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GladiatHers® Spotlight: Leah Howard — PhD Student and Counselor

From college athlete, to working adult, to present PhD student, Leah Howard is this week’s GladiatHers® Spotlight. Howard is currently a graduate student working towards her PhD in Counselor Education. She has a passion for teaching and counseling, currently teaching master’s level counseling students at Mercer University.

In addition to this role, Howard is the Chief Intern at Grady Hospital Behavioral Health serving Downtown and Metro Atlanta. Howard’s impressive work does not end there as she also provides counseling services via private practices at Open Arms Counseling Center. A major part of her roles and responsibilities include providing counseling and wellness strategies to clients, many of which include young adult populations and athletes.

Experiencing her own hardships when the athletic department was disbanded her sophomore year as captain of the tennis team, Howard credits her experiences of being an student-athlete as the reason she wants to support the athletic community. Howard is not only using her education to pursue her passion for helping others, in her free time she promotes advocacy surrounding destigmatizing mental health through social media. Howard is a huge advocate for knowing and understanding why athletes need mental health providers, services, and prioritizations.

As an aspiring sports counselor, Howard is working hard to inspire athletes to speak up on mental health issues. Although there is still much work to be done with intersecting the world of sports and mental health, with her vision, passion and pursuit of more this GladiatHer is well on her way to achieve her goals and make a difference!

To learn more about or connect with Leah Howard, you can follow her @thesportscounselor or visit


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