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  • Nikki Claudette EMDR Scholarship

    At Distinctive Counseling & Consulting, PLLC, we are committed to expanding mental health services across Texas. As of 2022, there is only one EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) Certified Therapist in the Corpus Christi, Texas area. Given EMDR’s efficacy and ability to reduce a wide array of mental health symptoms in a short time frame, one of Distinctive’s mission is to expand EMDR services in the Coastal Bend and across Texas through this scholarship opportunity.

    Nikki Claudette EMDR Scholarship 2022 Recipient - Merideth Owens, MS, LPC-Associate (Supervised by Julie Thigpen, LPC-Supervisor, Registered Play Therapist Supervisor

    Merideth Owens is the 2022 recipient of the Nikki Claudette EMDR Scholarship, becoming Distinctive’s first associate-level play therapist to engage in EMDR Training. Merideth is a phenomenal counselor in training with a passion for helping clients and families move through challenges toward healing. She is excited about integrating EMDR into her work as a play therapist.  

    About the Nikki Claudette EMDR Scholarship

    This initiative was inspired by the owner’s own struggle with overcoming grief related to the loss of her sister, Nikki Claudette Aguilar (1986 – 2009). Nikki lost her life to suicide in 2009 after years of struggling with mental health and substance abuse issues. It took years before Nikki’s loved ones were able to overcome the grief finally finding relief and hope through EMDR treatment. EMDR was life changing and provided relief from symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder for Nikki’s mother and sister.

    In Nikki’s memory, the Nikki Claudette EMDR Scholarship was established to expand EMDR services and promote healing through the work of professional counselors working towards full licensure in Texas.

    The aim of this scholarship is to expand EMDR services in the Coastal Bend and in Texas virtually. Associate level counselors working at Distinctive Counseling & Consulting, PLLC are given the opportunity to apply for the scholarship. Applications are scored based on criteria met and are reviewed by two independent reviewers. 

    All Nikki Claudette EMDR Scholarship recipients selected for this scholarship also have an opportunity to become EMDR Certified through the EMDR International Association.

    *2022 scholarship funding supported by Nikki’s sister and brother-in-law, Joseph L. and Jinnelle V. Powell. 

    *2021 scholarship funding supported partially by Nikki’s parents, Roy and Lupita Aguilar.

    Nikki Claudette EMDR Scholarship 2021 Recipient - Paul Martinez, MS, LPC, LCDC

    Paul Martinez was awarded the Nikki Claudette EMDR Scholarship in 2021, becoming Distinctive’s first Associate level counselor to engage in EMDR Training. Paul is an exceptional counselor committed to his personal and professional growth while working to promote the healing of his clients.