About Pamela Dean
I earned my Master of Social Work from Arizona State University in 1997 and initially found myself working with inpatients at Charter Hospital. After Charter closed, I went to work for Superstition Mountain Mental Health Center in Apache Junction, eventually working my way up to Outpatient Director. Then in 2006 I was ready to launch into private practice and I have been thrilled with my decision to take that risk.
Prior to starting work on my master's degree I earned a bachelor of psychology from ASU and I completed a Certificate in Chemical Dependency Counseling program at Rio Salado Community College, which was a two-year program. I always knew I wanted to have a career in behavioral health and every experience on my journey helped to prepare me for the work I do now. I started by working in group homes for developmentally disabled clients, both children and adults, many of whom were aggressive and did not speak. This helped me to improve my observational and defusing skills like nothing else! I knew I wanted to do more so that led me to the chemical dependency program, but that also felt too limiting as far as helping folks. Completing the master's degree has given me the skills, knowledge and freedom to work on my own and to help a wide variety of people.
During my career I have also worked with inpatient adolescents and children, inpatient general psychiatric, inpatient substance abuse, adolescent boys in a group home, people court ordered to substance abuse education and domestic violence counseling, people designated as seriously mentally ill, and children and adults in a community mental health setting.
About My Work
Making the decision to seek therapy can be quite difficult and my goal is to make each therapy experience safe and rewarding. I am a natural teacher so much of my work involves teaching about interpersonal concepts, thereby empowering people with knowledge. Along with education comes practice, to help create new habits and patterns, so I frequently give therapy homework.
Therapy is an interactive process, we work together to both identify and solve problems. I strive for a balance between listening, supporting, engaging people in their own problem solving process and offering suggestions based on my knowledge.
What Is A Clinical Social Worker?
Clinical social workers commonly hold a master's degree in social work and have completed two years of supervised practice to obtain an independent clinical license. They may use a variety of therapeutic techniques, including cognitive-behavioral, family systems, group and many other types of therapy.