Student Training

Afg Guidance Center offers an intensive 11-month training program for doctoral students in clinical psychology who are completing their Ph.D. or Psy.D. graduate educational requirements. Students completing their Diagnostic and Advanced Externships, under the direct supervision of the licensed psychologists at our practice, conduct clinical interviews; administer, score, and interpret neuropsychological and psychoeducational assessment measures. The trainees also work collaboratively with their supervisors to prepare psychological evaluation reports; and provide feedback to parents, clients, other members of the treatment team. Additionally, students completing their Advanced externship provide therapy services, again under the supervision of a licensed clinical psychologist within the practice. Outside of the clinical work that they complete, trainees participate in a weekly team-led meeting designed to advance their developing assessment, therapeutic, and professional skills.

Diagnostic Assessment Externs

This year’s assessment externs, from left to right, are Katherine Pace, Kowsar Hijazi, Georgene Acquaah, Kaleigh Urban, and Samara Al Omaishi.

diagnostic externs.


Katherine Pace, MA

Hey y’all! My name is Katherine (Kate) Pace and I am a 2nd year Clinical Psychology Doctoral student at Midwestern University. I am a late-deafened adult, and I use hearing aids, American Sign Language, and/or lip reading to communicate. I am Louisiana born and raised, and I received both my bachelor’s and master’s degrees in psychology at LSU (geaux tigers!) and ULM, respectively. Some of my areas of interest include: equine-assisted therapy, psychopharmacology, and physical disabilities. In my free time, you can find me reading fiction, walking my two dogs, or weightlifting at the gym!

Kowsar Hijazi, MA

I am a 2nd year Clinical Psychology Doctoral student studying at Midwestern University with an interest in working with children, adolescence, and young adults. I received my Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology in 2018 from the Michigan School of Psychology and have had past experience in working with individuals 5 years and older administering neuropsychological testing. In my free time, I enjoy binge-watching Netflix and shopping!

Georgene Acquaah, MA

Hi everyone! My name is Georgene Acquaah and I am a 4th-year Clinical Psychology Doctoral student (Psy.D) at Adler University. I am originally from the north suburbs of Chicago. An area of interest for me is providing therapy and assessment services to the child & adolescent population with various emotional and learning challenges. In my free time, I enjoy learning and cooking new food recipes!

Kaleigh Urban, MA

I am in my 4th year at Adler University, working on my doctoral degree with an emphasis in Child & Adolescent psychology. I currently have my masters in clinical psychology from Adler University and work as a milieu therapist at a child and adolescent inpatient unit, where I help provide therapy and services for patients suffering from severe mental illness. I enjoy listening to music and working on various art projects in my free time.

Samara Al Omaishi

I am a 2nd year Psy.D student at Adler University. As a Clinical Psychology Doctoral student, I am interested in learning about traumatic stress in adolescents and young adults. My clinical experience involves leading support groups for adults with PTSD and mood disorders, as well as working as a crisis intervention-trained counselor for youth and adolescents with traumatic brain injuries and severe developmental disorders. I am originally from Toronto, Canada and am thrilled to be living in the Chicagoland area. In my free time, I enjoy reading mystery-thriller novels, baking, and cooking!

Therapy Externs

This year’s therapy externs, from left to right, are Spencer Carrol, Andrea Barrios, Isabel Zepeda, Ali Charnov, Emily Maue, and Alyssa Smolke.

therapy externs.

Spencer Carrol

Spencer Carrol is a student at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, seeking his master’s in clinical mental health counseling. He is originally from Irving, Texas. Spencer is a former teacher seeking a new way to enrich the lives of children and adolescents through counseling. In his free time, Spencer likes to play video games and tabletop role-playing games, as well as explore the outdoors. He is extremely excited to be part of the AFG team.

Andrea Barrios

As a Master’s of Clinical Mental Health Counseling student at Adler, I love learning about development, the pursuit of meaning, and how unique everyone’s minds and experiences can be. I have worked with children and adolescents for about 6 years of my life. In my free time, I love listening to music and podcasts, watching reality tv, spending time with my cat Lulu, taking walks, and playing games.

Isabel Zepeda

I am currently part of the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. I obtained my bachelor’s degree in medical humanities and health studies at Indiana University- Purdue University Indianapolis. In my free time, I love to read, attempt to create latte art, and practice Muay Thai. I am so excited to learn and grow with the AFG Family this year!

Ali Charnov

My name is Ali Charnov and I am currently a student at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program. I graduated from the University of Illinois in 2014 and grew up in Deerfield where I attended Deerfield High School. I have been working with kids for the past six years through my volunteer experience at Experience Camps, a national, no-cost program for grieving children who have experienced the death of a parent, sibling or primary caregiver. I am ecstatic to begin doing this work full-time as a mental health professional. In my free time I especially love baking, hiking, reading, and cuddling with my parents’ golden retriever! If I could only eat one thing for the rest of my life it would be chocolate chip pancakes with extra whipped cream.

Emily Maue

My name is Emily and I’m so excited to intern at AFG!

My experience with kids and teens spans over 15 years (daycares, nannying, camp counseling, teen homeless shelters, schools, partial hospitalization). I worked as a licensed social worker until 2017, when I decided to move to Chicago to pursue a graduate degree in psychology.

When I’m not working on school, I’m a yoga teacher, fitness trainer, reader, podcast-binger, and a snuggler of my kitties. I look forward to working with your family!

Alyssa Smolke

My name is Alyssa and I am in my last year at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. I have a concentration in children and adolescents and have worked with children for approximately 10 years. In my free time, I like to spend time with friends and family, try new restaurants, and do yoga.