We’re excited to introduce you to the always interesting and insightful Kate Jennings. We hope you’ll enjoy our conversation with Kate below.
Kate, thanks for joining us, excited to have you contributing your stories and insights. What did your parents do right and how has that impacted you in your life and career?
My parents always encouraged me to “be the change you wish to see in the world.” It wasn’t enough to want change or wish for a difference- if I wanted something to change, I have implement that change. As children, the #1 protective factor against thoughts of self-harm and suicide are reliable and trustworthy adults. They were reliable adults in my world who I knew I could count on 100% no matter what I do well or how big I mess up. They are both hard workers- they worked full-time as I grew up, and they taught me the importance of determination. Lastly, and perhaps as a therapist, most importantly, they taught me the value of being a confidante to others and the importance of trustworthiness.
Awesome – so before we get into the rest of our questions, can you briefly introduce yourself to our readers.
My name is Kate Jennings, and I am a Licensed Professional Counselor. I am a child & teen therapist, and I am honored to walk alongside your children in their journey to improved mental health. I’m also here to help support you on this roller coaster ride of parenting.
A Fort Worth Country Day School “Original,” I graduated from high school in 2004 after thirteen years with my best friends. I attended the University of Texas at Austin where I earned my undergraduate degree in psychology with a minor in education. After jumping in the fountain and leaving the burnt orange tower behind, I moved back to my hometown of Fort Worth where I re-branded myself as a Longhorned Frog and went to graduate school at TCU for my Masters of Education in Counseling.
The day after I graduated from grad school I was hired at Cook Children’s where I spent the next eleven years gaining the bulk of my therapy experience. Most recently I had the pleasure of being the first clinical therapist to serve the Gastroenterology Clinic where I focused on the brain/gut relationship, and I helped patients learn about how their mental health and physical health are intertwined. It was in this role that I became passionate about helping children who have been diagnosed with chronic illnesses. My focus in GI was primarily on patients with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, collectively known as Inflammatory Bowel Disease or “IBD,” but I have experience in helping children with other things such as chronic abdominal pain, Celiac disease, and anxious tummies.
I am momma to both a 4 year old going on 14, “Junebug,” and the happiest toddler on the block, Wyatt Bee, named after his great-grandfather, Carl Bee… and therein lies the name of my practice and social media blog, The Bug and Bee. Follow me on Instagram, @thebugandbee !
Putting training and knowledge aside, what else do you think really matters in terms of succeeding in your field?
While of course a therapy license (therefor a Masters Degree) are necessary for a private practice counselor, I underestimated the amount of business knowledge I would need to run my practice. I feel it would be tremendously helpful for anyone considering a move into small business that you look into some business classes to help support your role.
How’d you build such a strong reputation within your market?
Truly, my reputation within my market has been purely word of mouth. People trust their friends, family, and peers. They don’t want referrals to random clinics or buildings- they want personal experiences and personal references. I have an innate ability to build rapport quickly with children and families, and I think people share that experience with others looking for mental health support.
- Website: www.thebugandbee.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thebugandbee/
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheBugandBeeFW
- Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kate-jennings-7b2210122/
- Other: Featured on: Fort Worth Woman: https://fortworthwoman.com/women-on-the-move/kate-jennings/ Voyage Dallas: http://voyagedallas.com/interview/check-kate-jenningss-story/ Shoutout DFW: https://shoutoutdfw.com/meet-kate-jennings-licensed-professional-counselor/ NBC: 1. https://www.nbcdfw.com/texas-today/talking-to-your-child-about-global-conflicts/2923514/ 2. https://www.nbcdfw.com/texas-today/teaching-your-kid-about-secrecy/2956095/
Nikki Caviness Photography Reverie Photography