Allison Kent, MSW welcomes clients of the following populations or topics: Marriage counseling, sex therapy, and healing from infidelity, domestic violence/intimate partner violence, self-harm, grief & loss, life changes, trauma, anxiety, depression, mood disorders, counseling focused on sexuality & intimacy enhancement and healing from sexual dysfunction, co-parenting, non-traditional or non-monogamous relationships, single parents, blended families, people with disabilities and chronic conditions, LGBTQIA, survivors of sexual assault/rape, formerly incarcerated people, parents of children with special needs, survivors of child abuse/neglect, family counseling for people who have experienced adoption or foster care; substance use & addiction.
Allison joins the Counseling & Wellness Center of Pittsburgh working with our sliding scale and cash-only clients in our Pittsburgh and Wexford Counseling Centers.
Allison is fluent in both English and American Sign Language and welcomes Deaf/Hard-of-Hearing clients and their family members.Allison utilizes strengths based, solution focused therapy in working with her patients. Allison leans on the research of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Dialectical Behavior Therapy. Her approach is both task-centered and supportive. Instead of focusing on “what’s wrong” with people, Allison seeks to explore what’s happening in their circumstances and develop resiliency. Just because someone experienced a bad situation it does not make them a bad person.
As a therapist, Allison is healing-centered and focused on the ‘now,’ as well as how past experiences can be a framework for strength and recovery. Allison believes that with support, people’s lives can be improved in big ways and small. Allison views therapy as necessary preventative maintenance and works to dismantle the stigma that people who seek out therapy are weak or broken.
Allison holds a Master’s in Social Welfare from the University of California, Los Angeles and a Master’s in Education from the University of Pittsburgh. Allison’s research areas are primarily focused on moral reasoning; the neurobiology of attachment and understanding how adverse childhood experiences can establish a framework for how we process the world as adults. For her MSW, Allison’s thesis project was entitled, “How Parents’ Adverse Childhood Experiences Increase Family Risk for Public Child Welfare Services.” During this time, Allison studied under Dr. Jorga Leap and participated in a longitudinal qualitative evaluation of a substance abuse treatment program. Allison’s capstone research for her M.Ed. was entitled, “Student Conduct and its Impact on Moral Reasoning.” Allison completed her undergraduate degree in Sociology at California State University, Northridge.
Allison’s training and previous experiences are in Social Work, which examines how people exist in their environment as well as outside the classroom education. Allison has worked for Goodwill SWPA, University of Pittsburgh’s Residential Life, University of California at Berkeley’s Residential Development, CCAC North Campus, Los Angeles County Children & Family Services, and the National Center on Deafness. Allison also volunteers at Camp Conrad Chinnok – a residential summer camp for children and teenagers with Type 1 Diabetes.
Allison is a Los Angeles, California native who first moved to Pittsburgh in 2011. She currently lives in Pittsburgh with her blended, modern family and enjoys all the that Western PA has to offer.