Date of Conferral







Susana Verdinelli


The Latino/a/x population in the United States continues to increase as does the need for mental health professionals who are bilingual and knowledgeable on multicultural issues. Spanish is the native language spoken in approximately 13% of the households in the United States, with 36% of Spanish-speakers seeking mental health treatment. Research on therapists serving Latino/a/x clients indicated that therapists struggled to provide culturally sensitive and linguistic appropriate interventions. While therapists’ challenges and experiences have been explored, little is known on the therapeutic experiences of Latino/a/x former clients. The purpose of this interpretative phenomenological analysis was to explore the therapeutic experiences of self-identifying Latino/a/x former mental health therapy clients, how they perceived cultural components in therapy, and how they evaluated the overall outcome of therapy. The conceptual framework for this study was based on an integrative framework in mental health treatment for Latinos. Data were collected from semi structured interviews with 10 former Latino/a/x clients. Results of thematic analysis indicated that participants found it helpful when therapists allowed for language switching, asked about their culture, and showed a genuine interest in it, shared the same or similar cultural background, and were of the same gender and close in age to the participant. The results of this study have the potential to be used for positive social change in the creation and implementation of culturally appropriate interventions for therapists who provide services to Latino/a/x clients.