Dr. Leigh Kwasny, Coordinator of the Encompass Program, is a psychologist at CBC where she works with children, adolescents, adults, and families. Leigh has intensive training in both Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT). Leigh has experience providing evidence-based treatment to youth and adults in a variety of settings, including community mental health clinics, private boarding schools, and hospital settings. Leigh has a particular interest in working with youth and adults who present with trauma-related disorders, suicidality, and mood disorders. Leigh received her BA in psychology from Marist College in Poughkeepsie, New York. She earned both her master’s degree and her doctoral degree in clinical psychology from La Salle University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
During Leigh’s graduate training, she completed an externship at the Outpatient Psychiatry Center (OPC) at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and provided comprehensive treatment to adults. Leigh provided therapy using both CBT and Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy to clients with a range of psychopathology, including mood and anxiety disorders, PTSD, personality disorders, adjustment difficulties, substance abuse, and co-occurring health problems. Leigh also completed an externship at Westtown School, a college preparatory boarding school. She provided evidence-based treatment, crisis interventions, and psychoeducational testing to youth presenting with mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and perfectionism. Leigh completed her final externship at Penn Medicine Princeton House at the Teen Girls program, where she provided DBT to youth and their families presenting with mood disorders, trauma, self-harm, suicidality and disordered eating.
Leigh also participated as a student clinician on two specialty outpatient mental health treatment teams, including the La Salle University CBT Depression/Post-partum team where she provided CBT to adults with mood disorders. She also served on the La Salle University Evaluation and Assessment team, where she provided psychoeducational and psychodiagnostic assessments to adults with a wide range of psychopathology and learning difficulties. Further, Leigh was elected to be chief extern of two additional specialty treatment teams at La Salle University, providing peer supervision to student clinicians working with youth and their families, as well as with adults.
Leigh completed her pre-doctoral internship at Penn Medicine Princeton House, NJ, where she completed two six-month rotations in a partial hospitalization and an intensive outpatient setting. Her first rotation was at the Women’s program, in which she provided DBT and trauma-informed care dedicated to the treatment of adult women presenting with trauma related disorders, borderline personality disorder, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, dissociative disorders, substance abuse, and eating disorders. She conducted individual DBT therapy and led DBT skills training groups, as well as seeking safety, compassion-focused therapy, and CBT. Within the DBT track, she led and co-led DBT skills and homework groups and implemented milieu coaching. On her second rotation, Leigh worked with young adults with a range of disorders administering CBT & DBT. She also worked extensively in the Men’s trauma track, providing individual and group-based treatment to men presenting with trauma related disorders, mood disorders, substance abuse, and personality disorders. Leigh also conducted psychoeducational and psychodiagnostic testing for clients presenting with a variety of concerns.
Leigh’s research interests include examining the effects of social media usage on adolescents’ sense of self. Leigh’s doctoral dissertation specifically examined the role tone of feedback and emotional connectedness to Facebook played in the association between Facebook usage and social self-concept in adolescents. She also views clinical research as an integral tool when providing treatment to her clients, using research to guide and inform her therapeutic approach. Leigh is an active member of multiple professional organizations, including the American Psychological Association (APA) and the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (ABCT).