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College of Human Ecology

FSHS's one-of-a-kind financial therapy clinic to open in January

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Kansas State University's Institute of Personal Financial Planning will soon open what is thought to be the first clinic to offer financial therapy: the blending of financial counseling with marriage and family therapy to help individuals, couples and families struggling both financially and emotionally.

The clinic, to open in late January 2009, will be on the second floor of the Colony Square Building, 555 Poyntz Ave., in downtown Manhattan. It will be open on Wednesdays, with hours to be announced later. The Financial Therapy Clinic and Institute of Personal Financial Planning are part of the School of Family Studies and Human Services in K-State's College of Human Ecology.

"The clinic will bridge marriage and family therapy with financial counseling and planning to provide comprehensive treatment to people who have money issues that are causing conflict, depression or anxiety. We think it is the first clinic of its kind that we are aware of," said Kristy Archuleta, an assistant professor of family studies and human services and a faculty member of the Institute for Personal Financial Planning.

Archuleta is a licensed marriage and family therapist who specializes in therapy for rural and farm families, working with couples experiencing financial issues. She and other faculty from the Institute of Personal Financial Planning will work closely with the Financial Therapy Clinic.

"Researchers at K-State adopted the phrase 'financial therapy' to describe the integration of financial counseling with marriage and family therapy, focusing on the cause of destructive financial behaviors and finding solutions to negate those behaviors," Archuleta said. "Since so many couples struggle with financial issues throughout their relationship, it is important to train our future marriage and family therapists and financial counselors and planners to address these issues in their professional capacities."

While providing financial therapy services to the Manhattan area, Archuleta said one of the main missions of the clinic will be as a research facility in the areas of risk tolerance assessment evaluation, solution-focused financial therapy, investment profiling and financial knowledge, attitude and behaviors.

"Researchers interested in financial therapy will have the opportunity to test counseling and therapy techniques, as well as theoretical approaches to financial counseling and planning in a controlled and supervised environment," she said. "We want to find out what works and what doesn't in a financial planning session, and what is in the best interest of the client."

The clinic also will be a place where students, both graduate and undergraduate, can obtain practice and experience working with clients, using established counseling and therapy techniques in a supervised setting.

Archuleta also expects the clinic to become part of K-State's new doctoral program in personal financial planning. Applications are being accepted now for the program, which will start in August 2009. Although offered primarily online, students in the program will be required to come to campus for 10 days a year. Archuleta thinks there will be opportunities for the students, especially those from the Manhattan area, to gain hands-on experience at the clinic.

More information about the Financial Therapy Clinic, the Institute of Personal Financial Planning and the new doctoral program in personal financial planning are available at the K-State Institute of Personal Financial Planning web site.

Sources: Kristy Archuleta, 785-532-1474, kristy@k-state.edu; and John Grable, 785-532-1486, jgrable@k-state.edu
Web site: http://ipfp.k-state.edu
News release prepared by: Beth Bohn, 785-532-6415, bbohn@k-state.edu

This article was posted on Tuesday, November 25, 2008, and is filed under College News, Family Studies & Human Services.