Luke began working with adolescents as a residential counselor after earning his BA in psychology and art studio from SUNY Geneseo. He was an active participant in the recreational therapy program and participated in outdoor learning and adventure trips. Luke then pursued his Masters in creative arts therapy from Nazareth College where he continued to focus on working with children, adolescents, and families.
During graduate school, Luke became interested in animal-assisted therapy. He certified his border-collie, Tana, with Therapy Dogs International. In 2010, he and Tana moved to Montana where they worked in the school setting providing group, individual, and family therapy for students with emotional and behavioral concerns. While in Montana, Luke was able to complete training in equine-assisted therapy and enjoy the magnificence of the many outdoor recreational opportunities Montana offers.
In 2013, they relocated to Seattle. Luke has continued his mental health work with youth; gaining experience with students on the autism spectrum and providing prevention services for substance abuse.
Luke uses an eclectic style of counseling, working with clients and within systems to find an appropriate approach after building strong therapeutic relationships. Frequently, experiential elements and in vivo coaching are used to facilitate growth and learning. Art therapy techniques may be used for expressive or insight-oriented work; and cognitive-behavioral techniques may be incorporated with psycho-education information when appropriate. Luke attempts to provide flexible and an ‘outside the box’ approach to reduce the stigma of mental health.
Luke and Tana both love being active and spending time in nature. They are excited about their opportunity to work with Rites of Passage and help teenagers and young adults transform into their best self.