New counselor says students can drop in whenever they need to
She hails from the United Kingdom and has lived in France, South Africa, Hong Kong, and Turkey, but now she finds herself… deep in the heart of Wisconsin cornfields?
Alex Liosatos is Lakeland College’s new part time counselor, filling in for full-time counselor Cary Knier on Fridays. Considering her sheer passion for travel, as well as her background in both social anthropology and international affairs, it is no wonder Liosatos harbors such a deep appreciation for other cultures and the people that partake in them.
Liosatos is also serving as an adjunct instructor in Lakeland’s Kellett School’s counseling department, particularly in the field of multicultural counseling. Liosatos believes multicultural awareness has a positive impact on counseling in general.
“It is important to remain completely open and to ask the right questions so that you can figure out what you need to know to help a person and what you need to know about that person’s culture so that you can help them in the best way—this actually applies to all counseling, but in multicultural counseling you may have to ask a lot more questions,” Liosatos said.
Though some might find it odd that one with such an interest in the world at large would settle down in a quiet Wisconsin community, Liosatos says that she is by no means bored in her current situation—in fact, it may be one of her greatest adventures yet, and one that was years in the making.
Liosatos has a personal connection to Lakeland as she graduated from its Kellett School with a master’s degree in counseling.
She has wanted to work at Lakeland ever since her husband, Professor of History Richard Dodgson, was hired by the school five years ago—in fact, his decision to take the job was influenced by their knowing the campus had a counseling department in which Liosatos would someday like to work.
Liosatos is eager to meet the students and is already fascinated by Lakeland’s own little ‘culture’. “There is even a culture on campus,” Liosatos said with a laugh. “The different groups all have their own ways of dressing and talking.”
Liosatos hopes more students will drop in and take advantage of the resource, and believes more will do so once they truly understand what its offerings are.
“We have people coming in with problems ranging from academic stress to relationship problems to more serious things like depression,” Liosatos says.
“But, I think it is important for students to know that they can drop in whenever they need someone to talk to. Sometimes people think that to see a counselor they must have a mental illness, but that isn’t the case. Counselors are also here just for supportive talks and to serve as a listening ear,” Liosatos said.
In addition to her duties at Lakeland, Liosatos serves at Novo Counseling and BridgePoint Health in Sheboygan, as well as facilitating a weekly group for at risk teenage girls.
In regard to offering any discouraged student advice, Liosatos said, “This too shall pass… but, it may pass more quickly if you reach out for help!”