I moved to Edmonton from Regina Saskatchewan over 15 years ago to begin graduate school after completing my Honours Degree in Psychology at the University of Regina.
Inspired by the work of existential psychiatrist Victor Frankl, I sought to learn more about the use of existential psychotherapy in a counselling setting.
I aspired to help people make meaning out of their time on this earth and became fascinated by the idea of our inevitable death being both paralyzing and motivating as we strive to live a life of purpose.
Both my Master’s and Ph.D. research were funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) and focussed on death anxiety specifically.
I conducted social psychology experiments with hundreds of young adults and older adults that explored how death anxiety impacts our behaviour during different developmental periods.
I went on to publish articles on death anxiety in older adults as well as how to apply what I learned to the counselling setting when clients seek support in managing death anxiety specifically.
While I no longer conduct research, my work as a psychologist will forever be impacted and inspired by existentialism.
I now work within many models and frameworks of psychotherapy but will always be grounded in a sensitivity regarding the human condition and the power of meaning making when faced with life’s challenges.
Dr. Rochelle Major - Registered Psychologist
- Ph.D. in Counselling Psychology from the University of Alberta
- Vice President of the United Cultures of Canada Association
- Adjunct Professor at the University of Alberta providing guest lectures and supervision of Ph.D. students
- Published author and researcher on topics regarding aging, death anxiety, adult romantic attachment relationships, parenting, psychotherapy, domestic violence, and interprofessional learning in university settings
- Trained by the world’s leading experts in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Existential Humanistic Therapy, Mindfulness Based Therapy, Emotion Focussed Therapy, Emotionally Focused Couples Therapy, Prolonged Exposure Therapy for Trauma, Exposure and Response Prevention for OCD, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
- Facilitated group therapy sessions in areas including depression, social anxiety, grief, anger management, break-ups, eating disorders, and dementia
- Worked in a range of clinical settings including:
- group living programs for vulnerable youth
- social service agencies providing in-home interventions
- non-profit organizations
- Counselling and Clinical Services at the University of Alberta
- Alzheimer Society of Alberta and Northwest Territories
- private practice