A psychology degree often is the first step to a rewarding career counseling clients. As Beth Dahl discovered, it also can be the foundation to championing hope within an organization in unsuspecting ways.
Dahl, now the Rosecrance Jackson Centers grant coordinator, has found unique applications to clinical training in nearly 30 years with the organization. Beginning as one of the first therapists for the Women and Children’s Program when it opened in 1995, she led important efforts in technology development before taking oversight of key state-funded programs.
Rosecrance Jackson Centers’ longest-tenured employee credits the journey to leadership that approaches staff growth from a strengths-based perspective.
“It’s affirming to know that someone on the leadership team had confidence that I could learn these new skills at each step,” Dahl said. “Leadership saw qualities that I didn’t recognize at the time, and that allowed me to gain knowledge and skills that most people in these particular roles wouldn’t have.”
While serving clients as a counselor and conducting assessments for Rosecrance Jackson Centers’ intake team, she demonstrated the ability to learn treatment processes quickly, analyze data, and troubleshoot issues that occasionally arose.
This background proved valuable when Dahl was tabbed to lead the Iowa site’s IT team. During two-plus decades in that leadership role, she guided two major electronic system implementations and developed a new perspective on the systems that supported client care and increased counselor efficiency and satisfaction.
Dahl’s career came full-circle three years ago when she shifted to take responsibility for Rosecrance Jackson Centers’ grant-funded programs. While grant managers typically focus on data, details, and dollars, Dahl also oversees direct-care staff thanks to her early years as a clinician.
“I’m almost as involved in client care as when I started my career, and I enjoy that,” she said. “I understand where clients are coming from, as well as the systems and processes our teams rely on to provide the best care. That makes it easy to find areas for improvement and help our clinicians become even better at what they do.”