Open Sky is thrilled to introduce Sebastiaan Zuidweg as Clinical Director and Clinical Therapist! Sebastiaan is a Licensed Professional Counselor and has a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology with an emphasis in Wilderness Therapy from Naropa University. Prior to Open Sky, Sebastiaan gained years of clinical and managerial experience in wilderness therapy, community mental health, and higher education.
At Open Sky, Sebastiaan is returning to his passion for counseling youth and families. As a clinician, he works from a solution-oriented and strengths-based philosophy. His therapeutic techniques stem from Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), and Motivational Interviewing (MI). Sebastiaan’s focus is on creating authentic therapeutic relationships with youth and families to help motivate lasting change.
As Clinical Director, Sebastiaan will utilize his skills and experience in leadership and management, leading the Clinical Team in Open Sky’s holistic family systems approach. His values align with Open Sky’s, based on the foundational belief that every individual has the capacity to thrive.
Formerly, Sebastiaan worked as a lead therapist for Catherine Freer Wilderness Therapy Programs. During this time, Sebastiaan’s belief in the wilderness therapy model solidified and his enthusiasm grew. He worked with adolescents, providing clinical assessment, individual and group therapy, and aftercare planning.
Sebastiaan then transitioned into the community mental health arena, working at The Center for Mental Health in Gunnison, Colorado. As an Emergency Crisis Clinician and later, the Regional Manager, Sebastiaan carried a clinical caseload, provided community support and education, and clinical oversight of the community mental health clinic and local university counseling center.
“A grounded, humble, and experienced leader, Sebastiaan holds a deep belief in the healing power of wilderness and relationships,” said Emily Fernandes, Executive Director, “and his approach to his clinical work and leadership resonates with Open Sky’s humanistic, strengths-based philosophy and approach. We are thrilled for everything Sebastiaan brings to this key role, as a professional and a person.”