Carey Patrick Wertz
I have worked in various areas of education for the past 17 years. I started as a high school literature teacher in Georgia and now work as a college instructor in Human Services and Chemical Dependency Counseling for Aaniiih Nakoda College, a tribal community college in Fort Belknap, Montana. I hold a M.Ed. in English Education and a Ph.D. in Social Foundations of Education from the University of Georgia, and I completed my dissertation research on the personal, cultural relationships that people have with food in Beijing, China. I also worked as a teacher trainer and supervisor in both Beijing and Shanghai and will always carry a piece of China in my heart. Furthermore, during my Ph.D. program at UGA, I worked for three years as a research assistant for the College of Agricultural and Biological Engineering on research aimed to improve engineering education and increase student retention. I will always see teaching as part of my true essence and calling in life.
I completed my second master’s degree in counseling in May 2020 from Montana State University and currently serve as a mental health counselor for Aaniiih Nakoda College’s students and staff. I encountered the person-centered approach (PCA) in my counseling program and was immediately intrigued by PCA’s emphasis on genuineness, empathy, and unconditional positive regard. Foolishly, I thought my personal journey within myself was over; however, Rogers awakened me to a whole new array of intrapersonal depth, and I realized that the journey to know oneself is lifelong, as Rogers asserts. I continue to explore ways to embody Rogerian concepts in my professional work as a teacher and counselor, as well as in my personal life as a human being. Lastly, I am a strong LGBTQ advocate and strongly believe in the value of bringing PCA to the LGBTQ community.