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Free Military Psychology Clinic at Duquesne Welcomes Veterans, Families

A former paratrooper and psychology professor at Duquesne University, Dr. Roger Brooke brings both experience and knowledge to the new military psychology clinic at Duquesne University.

The clinic for veterans and their families, which opened in September, provides free services for a variety of issues, such as psychological assessments, counseling, group support, and family and children's service, and focuses on helping to make the transition from military to civilian life.

"The clinic is keen to reaching out to those vets not suffering psychiatric problems that meet diagnostic criteria but who are simply finding that they are having difficulty fitting into this strange and confusing culture of civilian life," Brooke said.

A special service that the clinic offers, and one that Brooke says they are very excited about, is a short course of eight sessions aimed at promoting family reintegration, communication skills and family strengths.

"One of the challenges we face is reaching vets for whom the culture of resilience and self-sufficiency runs deep, where asking for help is felt as failure," Brooke said. "This is one reason we are reaching out to families as well as vets."

In addition to the family programs the clinic offers, Brooke cited a number of other services and elements of the clinic that make it unique.

"We have no affiliation with the Veterans Administration or the military," he said. "We do not require diagnoses or insurance records for services to be provided. We are open to families, and can even work directly with the children of vets. Our perspective is holistic, and our services are free."

Although the clinic doesn't promote a religious belief, Brooke said the fact that the clinic is housed within a Catholic institution also distinguishes it.

"Our Catholic context means that we have a spiritual and ethical commitment to honor those who consult us, and that we understand the spiritual questions that are often raised in time of war," he said.

Duquesne's psychology department is nationally recognized for training doctoral students, some of whom focus specifically on working with veterans and their families.

Brooke's experience as a paratrooper in the South African army and as the father of a soldier who has been in Iraq every year since 200, provides a special connection to military clients. He wanted to bring this experience and knowledge to the University that, he says, served as his spiritual and intellectual home for many years before he ever came here. Brooke joined the Duquesne faculty in 1994 as a professor of psychology and director of clinical training. In this position, he was instrumental in obtaining American Psychological Association accreditation of the doctoral program and reaccreditation in 2006.

For more information on the military clinic, call 412.396.6562, email pasqualino@duq.edu or visit www.duq.edu/psychology-clinic.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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