Hi there! I am Shelby Clark. My own humanity shapes the way I approach my work. My mission as a scholar, educator, and practicing therapist is to transform our society. Social work is change work. I’m sure it sounds lofty… and maybe even unattainable to some. I do my change work in the world one small corner (and heart) at a time; starting with my own corner and heart and working outwards. I prioritize and elevate the strengths of those I work with in my research, teaching, and practice. I believe change is rooted in relationships. Therefore, relationships are central to all components of my work.
Presently, I am a doctoral candidate at The University of Kansas School of Social Welfare. As a part of my studies, I work under the direction of Dr. Becci Akin on a federally funded research collaborative aimed at improving child welfare practice and policy. Broadly, my research interests focus on the use of contemplative practices (i.e. mindfulness, meditation, yoga, compassion and self-compassion, etc.). as interventions to address traumatic stress. As a social work scholar, I use information to inspire more fulfilled living for people, communities, and society at large.
In my decade of social work practice, I have worked with children, adolescents, and families in both the non-profit and private practice sectors. I have trained in a variety of therapeutic modalities including cognitive behavioral therapy, acceptance and commitment therapy, and dialectical behavioral therapy. I am also a registered yoga teacher and incorporate mind-body interventions in my work with clients. Currently, I spend a few hours a week managing a small private, therapy practice where I primarily work with adolescents and emerging adults and their parents.
I am an avid yoga and mindfulness practitioner, lover of cheese (can’t beat a creamy brie paired with warm bread and fruit), a voracious reader (give me all the inspiring memoirs), and, from time to time, a Netflix binger (where my Schitt’s Creek people at?). I am also a spouse, mama to two, daughter, sister, aunt, neighbor, engaged community member, and a woman of faith in Jesus Christ. My positionality as a Christian and my ethical guidelines as a social worker encourage me to honor the autonomy and center the inherent dignity and worth of all people. I affirm the rights and agency of LGBTQIA+ individuals. I also believe firmly that Black Lives Matter (if this statement brings up defensive reactions for you- let’s talk about it). I have a deeply held belief that we are all intrinsically connected to one another. This belief drives my actions to work towards a compassionate, just, equitable, and sustainable world.
I am a human working alongside other humans. If you’d like to work together, check out my services page for more information about my research, courses, or to request a session.
All the best,