Emily Westerholm, Registered Mental Health Counseling Intern


Substance Abuse

Schedule an Appointment with Emily!

Emily Westerholm, Registered Mental Health Counseling Intern

My name is Emily Westerholm (she/her/hers). I am a nature/plant lover, amother, co-parent, and a Registered Mental Health Counselor Intern. I am anadvocate of unconditional positive regard but with an edge. Think Ted Lassomeets Mr. “T” but in the body of a cisgender, middle-aged woman.

I am worked in the Human Services field for two decades. In that time, Ihave focused on individuals in the following settings: prisons and jails,community mental health, transitional housing programs, schools, and healthcareclinics. I use evidence-based interventions and a client-centered approach thatcarves out space for strengths and empowerment.

I have lived in many places, from Texas to Alaska and several in between,but I fought hard to land in Gainesville and am ecstatic to live somewhere withsuch an ideal balance of beauty and grit. Living in Florida for all its glorycomes with many obstacles; historical and current oppressions, mosquitos, limitedhousing, and a political climate that can jeopardize ones sense of internal andexternal safety.

My Bachelor’s Degree was obtained in Human Services with a concentration inchemical dependency. For the last several years, I worked as a certified substanceabuse counselor in Virginia, specializing in opioid use and harm reduction. In2023 I graduated with my Master's degree in Mental Health Counseling with anemphasis on substance use disorders. After completing my clinical internship atAlachua County Crisis Center, I started a small local nonprofit named Released that supports thosethat have been incarcerated. As someone dedicated to the impact of trauma, Ireceived my Trauma Counseling Certification from the University of Milwaukee andwas certified in core competencies as an advocate with the Florida CoalitionAgainst Domestic Violence.

Many of us feel overwhelmed and isolated. As a counselor, I strive to hold aspace of compassion to address your unique journey and process what you bringinto the room using humor, silence, or gentle encouragement. I integratemindfulness, cultural and community integration, art, and storytelling, usingFeminist, Gestalt, and Systems theories in my counseling practice.

I look forward to meeting you and building a genuine therapeuticrelationship that allows for laughter, tears, and, most importantly, all thein-between moments of nuanced growth.