This fall, the School of Education welcomes three new faculty members. Today, we introduce Coralis Solomon, who joins us as a clinical assistant professor in the online Clinical Mental Health Counseling program.
Tell us a little about your background and what brought you to W&M.
I was born and raised in the beautiful island of Puerto Rico and moved to Orlando, FL at the age of 17. I pursued my undergraduate degree in psychology at the University of Central Florida, my master’s degree in counseling psychology at Troy University, and my Ph.D. in counselor education back at the University of Central Florida. As a licensed mental health counselor, my work with clients aims at body and mind interventions with a focus in multicultural counseling, mindfulness, self-compassion and trauma healing. I am a trained trauma sensitive yoga instructor and certified Laughter Yoga Instructor.
I was drawn to join William & Mary for its values in social justice and commitment to diversity. The focus of the School of Education on valuing different multicultural viewpoints was especially meaningful to me. I am proud of my Latin background and view the world through a multicultural lens with the purpose to infuse reflections and discussions of social justice influences into my work with students and clients. This is a very exciting time for me to be able to continue this work at W&M.
What’s your area of research and what question are you most passionate about answering right now?
My training and research with self-compassion practices have focused on working to prevent emotional burnout in teachers. Currently, I want to explore using self-compassion interventions to increase emotional resilience to address racial battle fatigue for teachers of color in the schools. I believe that to address antiracism in organizations, we also must create systems to heal the individuals that are already carrying the wounds from past and ongoing racial aggressions.
What else are you hoping to get involved with on-campus or in the community?
Institutions thrive and excel best when there is community inclusion and development of partnerships across the different departments. Due to the pandemic, the current difficult times that we are navigating, I hope that I can contribute with my research and training expertise in vulnerable areas of the community such as schools and low-income communities with the support of W&M. As a remote faculty, I also look forward to connecting with the online networking groups and collaborating with organizations that promote diversity and inclusivity.
Anything else you’d like to share?
We live in a society where practicing self-compassion can be seen as selfish or nonproductive and the recent research has shown that is quite the opposite. The more we care about ourselves, the more successful and compassionate towards others we can be. During my time at W&M, I look forward to collaborating in promoting a culture of kindness and compassion among staff, faculty, and students where showing vulnerability will be encouraged as an act of strength.