I have been a graphic designer and a teacher, but my passion, as the oldest of three and mother of three, is children. I graduated from the University of North Florida with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications in 1998 then focused on creative work in various positions including freelance.
In 2013, I graduated from Florida State University with a Masters in Social Work while teaching. After teaching middle school for seven years in Duval County, FL and working as a school-based clinical counselor for Children’s Home Society of Northeast Florida, I am now an education consultant with a focus on mental health.
As a former teacher and social worker, I will always be an educator. I’m able to assist with strategies to create a more flexible, empathetic and comfortable learning environment for educators and students.
My goal is to merge clinical social work and education strategies with students to enhance their opportunities for success in the classroom and in the real world. It is equally important to work alongside educators and discuss the importance of achieving work-life balance.
MY WHY | The reason I help teachers become change agents in their schools and community is because they spend as many daytime hours with children as parents and I believe teaching them about mental health, related issues, and how it translates to emotions and behaviors of both students and teachers is overdue. Many in the school system are overwhelmed and feel unsupported when it comes to student behavior. So much focus is placed on scores and data that signs and symptoms of developmental and emotional challenges are overlooked or dismissed. Once educators and students are seen for more than what they produce, they will become more confident in reaching their true potential.
In my down time I love to enjoy nature, watch movies, read, listen to podcasts, line dance and listen to live music.
“Erica has a knack for helping you come to yourself and finding your grounding. When everything was feeling like a whirlwind of emotions and feelings while I was trying to find where I fit into the education world and my new role, when I needed help she always stepped in with great advice and helpful tips on how to handle the next moment and how not to beat myself up on the little things. Erica has a big heart and always puts the betterment of others at the forefront of her work.”M. Russell, 2nd Grade Reading