Jennifer Robohm, PhD
FMRWM Faculty - Behavioral Science
Where did you attend college?
I received my B.A. from Yale and my Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. Missoula reminds me a bit of Ann Arbor: a lovely, progressive college town with a lot of positive energy.
Did you do a residency?
We don’t have “residencies” in clinical psychology, but I completed a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in trauma at the Traumatic Stress Institute in South Windsor, CT.
Within psychology, do you have any specialty areas of practice that you particularly enjoy?
At different times in my career, I have really enjoyed working with trauma, women’s health, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) issues. In recent years, I’ve also been really excited about behavioral medicine and the potential and promise of integrating behavioral health and primary care services.
What do you most enjoy about practicing clinical psychology?
As a psychotherapist, I have been privileged to forge deep relationships with all sorts of people, to bear witness to their struggles, and to help them grow through difficult times or “stuck” places in their lives. The challenge in primary care is to make a meaningful connection and a significant impact in a shorter period of time, helping patients to find the strength in themselves to develop new coping skills and change long-standing health habits. Collaborating with other members of the medical treatment team, we can treat the whole patient and make a bigger difference in his or her life.
What do you enjoy most about teaching?
I was a a teacher and supervisor in UM’s Department of Psychology for close to 12 years, and I loved working with doctoral students and watching them grow as clinicians and as people. I learned so much from my students, and their enthusiasm and dedication were often infectious. Working with the medical residents has brought me the same satisfactions - they are driven to learn and dedicated to what they do, and their love for their work and each other is wonderful.
What brought you to Montana?
I moved my family from New York City after 9/11 to be closer to my twin sister and to raise my son in a beautiful place. My sister has since moved away, but we fell in love with Missoula and have made our home here.
Why did you choose to be part of the FMRWM?
It was very exciting to get in on the ‘ground floor’ of a new and dynamic program. (We’re no longer new, but we’re still dynamic!) The FMRWM faculty and residents recognize the importance of behavioral health in overall health and wellness. They appreciate the value of balance in our lives and in the lives of our patients. And they are committed to working with rural and underserved patients, which is inspiring. Since joining the FMRWM, I’ve also been able to introduce psychology graduate students into the clinic alongside the medical residents, as part of a field placement. It has been a great way to promote interprofessional education and prepare them all to work more collaboratively in inter-disciplinary and integrated care settings.
What are some of your interests outside of the clinic or classroom?
I love to get outside and to play all kinds of sports with my son - we share a passion for ice hockey! Hiking, camping, photography, canoeing, kayaking, fly fishing, and cross country skiing are all favorite activities.
I’m also passionate about climate change. I was recently named to the Board of Montana Health Professionals for a Healthy Climate and hope to increase my advocacy efforts in that area. I also want to bring climate change into the classroom: I’m collaborating with a colleague in the pharmacy department to develop on-line training for health professions students and practicing health professionals around the impacts of climate change, and I’ll be bringing climate change into our residency curriculum as well.
What do you love about Western Montana?
Natural beauty. Kind people. Great sense of community. There are a lot of “do gooders” here who I really respect and admire for their willingness to dig in and make a difference.
What is your favorite:
- Book? To Kill a Mockingbird
- Album? Too hard to pick just one: Bruce Springsteen, Catie Curtis, Cold Play, and Patty Griffin are all favorite artists of mine.
- Movie? The Full Monty, On Golden Pond, Lars and the Real Girl, to name a few. It just depends on my mood!