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University professor publishes LGBT counseling book

Contributing reporter

Published: Monday, September 26, 2011

Updated: Monday, September 26, 2011 13:09

One of Roosevelt University's own faculty members in the counseling human services program, has published his first book, "Counseling LGBT Americans," this past summer.

The book is supplemental to a multicultural textbook that specifically talks about working with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender clients.

The book, written by Dennis Frank, holds a wide range of information—from the history of the LGBT movement as well as LGBT individuals to specific techniques for working in counseling individuals who might be seeking out mental health treatment.  

While training for his Ph.D. in counselor education at the College of William and Mary in Virginia, Frank became a family therapist. In that position, he met with families and couples for three years until he became a licensed counselor. The LGBT movement has been Frank's biggest area of study in research since graduating.

"Being a gay man, the topic of working with gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender individuals has always been important to me," Frank said. "From both my personal experiences from seeing counselors and working in the field, a lot of counselors just haven't been very well educated. They may be supportive, but they just aren't knowledgeable about the needs of the population."

Frank found the experience of writing his book to be an educational journey, learning more than he had predicted. He spoke of how he learned a lot about the history of the gay rights movement, where he thought he was well informed about already.

"Once I started looking into it and seeing the institutional oppression that has often come through society and how that has formed the views of many people, it was eye opening," Frank said. "I knew it existed, but I had never really delved into it."

In regards to his future, Frank is looking forward in continuing his writing career. He has recently been asked to write a book chapter in another book dealing with adolescent boys and men coming out, which he is currently working on with the author.

Right now, Frank hopes to stay at the University, continuing to educate the next generation of counselors—helping them to become a little more competent in working with difference and diversity.

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