Meet Ekta Kumar! Ekta currently is a Psychology Intern at the new USC Engemann Student Counseling Center. She is from the University of Indianapolis and is now in her last year of doctoral training (PsyD). Starting today, Ekta will be serving as a professional counselor in the LGBT Resource Center’s new signature program: Drop In & Chat. Learn more about what Ekta and the program has to offer for students at USC.
Describe the Drop In & Chat program.
This is a program designed to better serve the LGBTQA community at USC. These consultation hours provide students with immediate access to speak with a professional counselor about any difficulties they are experiencing. Consultation hours provide confidential support, and in certain cases, recommendations for the next step (e.g., an appointment at Student Counseling Center). These services are 30-minute consultations versus a 50-minute therapy session.
How long have you been working with the LGBTQ & Ally community?
Although I have been trained as a generalist, I have been forming a specialization in providing LGBTQ-affirmative services for the past 4.5 years. My experiences include specific clinical work with LGBTQ individuals, organizing program-wide LGBTQ trainings, running LGBTQ therapy groups, my doctoral thesis on South Asian gay men, and political activism for equal civil rights.
What inspired your interest in the Drop In & Chat program?
I am currently the SCS Liaison to the LGBT Resource Center. I sought this liaison relationship due to my passion for LGBTQ issues and worked with Vincent to better serve USC student needs.
What do you hope students will get out of this program?
I hope students will be able to use these hours as a resource and another way to receive support in their lives. In certain cases, I hope these hours will serve as a stepping stone to seek psychological services at the Engemann Student Counseling Center.
Schedule: For the Spring of 2013, Ekta will be available to talk to students about anything and offer confidential support on Fridays from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the LGBT Resource Center (STU 202B). Students are not required to make an appointment but rather, they can drop in for a brief meeting.