Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Counselor Education


Educational Leadership, Counseling, and Foundations

Major Professor

Christopher Belser


LPCs in Louisiana operate in multiple professional roles and maintain various responsibilities, including advocacy for clients. Although numerous advocacy opportunities occur when counselors are working with children, a minimal amount of research exists regarding advocacy training, as well as the associated intricacies and responsibilities of advocacy. Lack of awareness of advocacy issues is a prominent barrier to advocacy involvement and it is suggested that counselor education programs are infusing advocacy education into courses but are not necessarily teaching specific constructs of advocacy. Thus, relevant and existing advocacy literature is sparse.

The purpose of my qualitative phenomenological research is to understand advocacy experiences of LPCs who work with minors who are survivors of child abuse and neglect. I will explore LPCs’ experiences regarding advocacy in the following areas: (a) education, training, and competence; (b) collaboration with various professionals; and (c) difficulties and benefits of advocating for minors who are survivors of child abuse and neglect. The outcome of this research is important as it may uncover advocacy areas in need of further research, gaps in education and training, and a reflection of clinical competency related to advocacy experiences of Louisiana counselors who serve minor survivors of abuse and neglect. Improved actions of advocacy for this population may result in prevention of further traumatic experiences, access to needed resources, lack of gaps in services and improved self-advocacy. Knowledge produced by the research could also lead to more competent practices for clinicians, improved education and training, and improved collaboration with professionals.


The University of New Orleans and its agents retain the non-exclusive license to archive and make accessible this dissertation or thesis in whole or in part in all forms of media, now or hereafter known. The author retains all other ownership rights to the copyright of the thesis or dissertation.

Included in

Counseling Commons