Humanity in homelessness: A social justice consultation course for counseling psychology students

Alyssa L. Clements-Hickman, Zachary Dschaak, Candice Nicole Hargons, Cheryl Kwok, Carolyn Meiller, Todd Ryser-Oatman, Doug Spiker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Students in counseling psychology have cited a desire for more opportunities to engage in social justice within their programs. Pressing national issues, such as homelessness, offer an opportunity to use transferrable psychology skills, such as consultation, to address and prevent systemic oppression, while affording students necessary training. This paper describes a doctoral level counseling psychology course on social justice consultation and evaluation. The students and faculty undertook a consultation project with the city's Office of Homelessness Prevention and Intervention (OHPI), where they applied a strengths-based social justice consultation model to the goal of providing recommendations to prevent homelessness. First, we set the context for homelessness in Lexington, Kentucky. We then outline the course's social justice consultation process and preparation/ presentation of a formal report for OHPI officials, including successful outcomes from the consultation. Finally, we discuss lessons learned from the consultation project and recommendations for students and faculty who plan to implement social justice consultation into their graduate programs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35-48
Number of pages14
JournalJournal for Social Action in Counseling and Psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Clements-Hickman, Dschaak, Hargons, Kwok, Meiller, Ryser-Oatman, & Spiker.


  • Counseling Psychology
  • Homelessness
  • Social Justice
  • Training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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