Fusako Yamagiwa

Position at CCPH: Psychiatric Social Worker

Year Joined UMass: 2023

Education: M.S.W., Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, MA; B.A. in Journalism & Creative Writing, Baruch College, City University of New York, N.Y.

Clinical Interests: PTSD, Complex Trauma, Intergenerational Trauma, Immigration/Acculturation Issues, 1st Generation College students, Racial and Cultural Identity Development

As a trauma treatment specialist and EMDR practitioner, I see symptoms such as anxiety, depression, or addiction develop as the mind’s way to cope with life challenges. My first goal as your therapist is to provide a place to listen without judgment. Next, I work with clients to develop alternative coping mechanisms, enabling them to create a space for insight-oriented work. On a deeper level, I utilize somatic therapy tools such as Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Progressive Counting Therapy to assist clients in healing past wounds and fostering Post-traumatic Growth. I also incorporate Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Therapy (MBSR) and other body-centered approaches in sessions to guide clients in employing self-calming skills.

Clinical Experiences: Private practice offering Intensive Trauma-Focused Therapy; Outpatient clinic therapist, Outreach, Clinical case management in community mental health, Western MA; Clinical training as Rape Crisis Counselor Advocate at Center for Women and Community, UMass Amherst; Domestic Violence Shelter Advocate, Safe Passage, Northampton, MA.

Certifications/Licenses: Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker. Certified in Progressive Counting and Trauma-Informed Psychotherapy through Trauma Institute and Child Trauma Institute, Northampton MA. EMDR Certified (EMDRIA).

More about me: I grew up in Japan and first came to the United States over 20 years ago as an adult on a cultural exchange program to teach Japanese in a public high school in the Midwest. I earned a bachelor's degree in journalism at a public college in Manhattan. Partly inspired by my own experience of finding healing from trauma through therapy, I attended Smith College School of Social Work. Now, I am grateful to be able to use my life experiences and professional skills to help UMass students. My goal is to create a welcoming, peaceful, and supportive oasis for students during these frenetic and stressful times.

In my spare time, I like to visit family in Japan, learn ballroom dancing, and hike and photograph the natural beauty of the mountains and woodlands of Western Massachusetts.