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Samuel Gladding

Professor of Counseling

Gladding, an expert on family counseling, can address issues related to parenting, blended families, and family relationships.

Biography

Samuel Gladding, a former president of the American Counseling Association, can address issues related to single-parent families, blended families, and parent/child relationships. He can also comment on life transitions, such as going to school, getting married and dealing with death and loss. Gladding can offer coping strategies in the aftermath of tragedies such as mass… Read More »

Samuel Gladding, a former president of the American Counseling Association, can address issues related to single-parent families, blended families, and parent/child relationships. He can also comment on life transitions, such as going to school, getting married and dealing with death and loss. Gladding can offer coping strategies in the aftermath of tragedies such as mass shootings. He worked with the Red Cross in assisting families of those killed in the World Trade Center attacks on 9/11 and provided counseling after the Virginia Tech shootings. Gladding’s textbook, Counseling: A Comprehensive Profession, is in its seventh edition and is used by counseling faculty and students internationally. In addition, he can address the place of groups in counseling, therapy, and work settings and their functional and dysfunctional aspects. Gladding can address multiple aspects of creativity, as well, especially the use of humor, writing, and music in wellness. He is also well versed in counseling as a global phenomenon and how helping professions are structured in other countries outside the United States, especially Malaysia, Turkey, China, Mexico and South Africa.

He taught a two-day workshop on marriage and family therapy for counselors and psychologists for the Turkish Psychological Counseling and Guidance Association. He also gave about a dozen shorter workshops and presentations — on topics ranging from “The Creative Arts in Counseling” and “Humor and Mental Health” — at universities in Istanbul, Ankara and Izmir. In addition, he was a Fulbright Specialist in China and taught courses on theories of counseling, especially psychodrama, at Minnan Normal and Xiamen Universities. He also worked with the Red Cross in assisting families of those killed in the World Trade Center tragedy and at Virginia Tech..

Gladding has taught, researched and written about counseling for more than 30 years. He joined the Wake Forest faculty in 1990 as an assistant to then-President Thomas K. Hearn Jr., and later served as the University’s associate provost before being named chair of the new counseling department in 1996. Since then, he has taught undergraduate classes on the Creative Arts and Counseling and graduate courses on family counseling. A former president of the American Counseling Association, he was once cited as among the top 1% of contributors to the Journal of Counseling and Development, the flagship journal of the American Counseling Association.

Media Appearances

Making sense of the senseless violence

U.S. News & World Report

December 4, 2015

Mass shootings and the accompanying carnage have now become a regular part of life in America. And mental health experts warn that this steady drumbeat of violence could have major consequences for the nation’s psyche.

There have been 355 mass shootings in the United States so far this year — defined as incidents in which four or more victims were shot, though not necessarily killed, according to ShootingTracker.com, a crowd-sourced website that monitors U.S. gun violence.

Others might become angry and determined, and see the ongoing violence as a call to action – even if they aren’t exactly sure what they can do. Samuel Gladding, a professor of counseling at Wake Forest, agrees. “Those closest to the shootings are responding with an outpouring of altruistic acts,” he said. “In such communities there is more fear, but also more defiance and resolve to not let violence win.”

Ho-hum holiday? Maybe traditions need an update

The Chicago Tribune

November 30, 2015

The holidays are coming, and that often means falling into routine get-togethers with family and friends. While there are undoubtedly cherished traditions that everyone looks forward to, others can be as welcome as stale fruitcake.

First, lose the guilt if you would rather take a pass on the communal viewing of “It’s a Wonderful Life,” making holiday cookies nobody seems to want anymore or hosting that December party whose luster has faded. People who have “holiday burnout” shouldn’t feel bad, said Samuel T. Gladding, professor of counseling at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C.

“People get tired of doing the same thing year after year, day after day, holiday after holiday,” Gladding said.

A serving of holiday manners

The Chicago Tribune

November 5, 2013

“It’s not that we’ve forgotten as much as we’ve ignored it,” says Professor Samuel Gladding, who heads the department of counseling at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C. “The mode of communication — or the most popular these days — is indirect communication through Twitter or text on through, well, you name it.

“Communication is an art form, but it seems to be a lost art at times when people gather together,” he adds. “They look down instead of at one another.”

Emoticons deliver digital emotions, but “if we don’t read facial expression or hear voice tone, we don’t know if the person is really inquiring or being sarcastic or being empathic,” says Gladding. “We can’t hear it, and we can’t see the expression on the other individual’s face.”

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Areas of Expertise

  • Arts in Counseling
  • Creative Arts in Counseling
  • Creativity
  • Family Counseling
  • Group Counseling
  • International Counseling
  • Professional Orientation to Counseling
  • Wellness

Education

University of North Carolina at Greensboro: Ph.D., Human Development and Family Studies with cognates in Counselor Education and Psychology

Wake Forest University: M.A., Counseling

Yale University: M.A., Religion

Wake Forest University: B.A., History

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