Dr. Rachel Copeland
Dr. Rachel Copeland
It's nice to meet you.
I am a licensed clinical social worker in private practice. The key to successful therapy is creating a warm, empathic, and sincere connection with your counselor. I believe that the relationship between counselor and client is the most important part of therapy, and I work to create a safe and comfortable environment where you can explore your most important needs.
I practice from a person-centered perspective, focusing on your current issues in context of your life experiences, relationships, and future goals. I also use cognitive-behavioral techniques to help explore how thinking can help or impede healing. When working with children, I use play therapy to help them communicate in the way that is easiest for them. When working with adolescents, I use a range of techniques to address their unique developmental stage.
Adults, children, and adolescents are welcome in my practice. I am experienced in working with couples who are dealing with conflict and infidelity as well as families who are struggling with relationships, behavioral problems, and conflict. When working with individuals, I specialize in treating anxiety, depression, trauma, relationship difficulties, and attachment issues.
Dr. Rachel Copeland is an assistant professor of social work in Birmingham, Alabama. She completed her PhD at New York University’s Silver School of Social Work in May of 2015. In her career Dr. Copeland has more than 14 years of experience as a clinical social worker specializing in treating a variety of issues, including trauma, attachment, anxiety, and conflict in marriages and families.
Dr. Copeland began her career in Birmingham, Alabama working with children and adolescents in the foster care system. After accepting a position at the Prescott House Child Advocacy Center, she worked in a dual role as a counselor and a forensic interviewer. She also began specializing in therapy with victims of trauma and earned a credential as a Registered Play Therapist Supervisor.
Dr. Copeland opened a private practice and expanded her focus from children and families to include adults and couples. Her practice work led to a relationship with the Big Oak Ranch and Pathways Professional Counseling, where she worked as a part-time therapist. In these endeavors Dr. Copeland began to concentrate her work on anxiety, depression, and attachment-related disorders.
Dr. Copeland moved to New York City to pursue her PhD at New York University. While at NYU, she taught Clinical Practice with Individuals and Families and Conflict Resolution as an adjunct instructor. She also worked on a research project based at Sloan Kettering Hospital where she provided therapy for women with cancer. For her dissertation, Dr. Copeland examined the role of support as a protective factor for adolescent mothers.
Dr. Copeland returned to her roots in child forensic interviewing when she accepted a position as the Director of Forensic and Clinical Services at the Manhattan Child Advocacy Center. In that role she trained and supervised several interviewers and therapists while working closely with the NYPD’s Special Victims Unit and the Manhattan District Attorney’s office.
After earning her PhD, Dr. Copeland returned to Birmingham to work as an assistant professor in a social work program. She continues to see individual clients in her practice while using her role at Samford to develop future social workers.
Ph.D., social work, New York University
M.S.W, social work, University of Alabama
B.A., psychology, Wheaton College
While at Pathways, Rachel worked with couples going through marital difficulties; individuals dealing with anxiety, depression, and trauma; and adopted children with attachment issues.
At the Big Oak Ranch, Rachel provided individual and family counseling services related child sexual abuse, trauma, and attachment. She also worked with the house parents to manage behavioral problems and promote family connection.
Rachel has worked at The Prescott House in Birmingham, Alabama and at The Manhattan Child Advocacy Center in New York City. Prescott House is the nation’s second oldest child advocacy center and was a pioneer in the use of child forensic interviewing as a tool in the investigation and prosecution of child sexual abuse. In her work as a forensic interviewer, Rachel has conducted more than 600 child forensic interviews. She has also testified as an expert witness in criminal proceedings and child custody cases.