Hi, I am Milton Montes de Oca.
I'm the newest member of the IAG Clinical Team, and I feel proud to serve among some of the finest clinicians and coaches in South Florida! I am currently finishing my Master's degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and completing my required internship hours studying, learning, growing, and practicing under the expert tutelage of this fine team of professionals.
I would describe myself as outgoing and friendly with a solid drive to succeed and serve.
I am a retired Commander of Police after 32 years of service with the City of Miami Police Department.
During my 32 years of working in Law Enforcement, I was called on many occasions to resolve issues that involved individuals experiencing a mental health crisis, substance use/abuse problems, marital discord, child abuse and/ or neglect, and suicidal ideation, among other life changing emotional events.
As an unskilled helper, my primary function was to ensure the safety of all involved and resolve the issue to the best of my ability. This resolution usually resulted in de-escalation of the behavior, referral, or arrest. These were the only tools at my disposal.
Law enforcement personnel have little to no training in resolving mental health issues other than applying what is available to them by the law. I noticed that this lack of training harbored a lack of empathy towards the population in mental distress. Essentially, a "quick fix" to the presenting problem was expected. Many times, there was recidivism.
My passion for mental health counseling began years before embarking on a career in Law Enforcement. However, experiencing and interacting in situations that warranted a mental health professional intervention, fueled the desire to pursue a second career in mental health counseling.
So, here I am.
The Clinical Mental Health Counseling Master's program warrants a practicum and internship in the field of Mental Health Counseling to achieve this graduate degree. I find that the work done by Its All Grief as an organization offers an environment that aligns with the goals and experience I envision as being conducive to proper professional training... these guys know their stuff!
I believe that my life span and past professional experiences will contribute to the notable and essential work being done by this clinical team.
I currently hold a Bachelor’s degree in Administration of Criminal Justice and I am in the last semesters as a student in the Master’s program in Clinical Mental Health Counseling (C.M.H.C.).
Both degrees are from Union Institute and University located in Cincinnati, Ohio. This University is C.A.C.R.E.P. accredited.
Fun Fact: Our Clinical Director, Antwan graduated from the same program!
Our CFO, Daniel, and one of our Life Coaches, Earlene, are also alumni of UI&U!
I am working under the direct clinical supervision of Mr. McKenzie-Plez and my Practicum & Internship Coordinator, Dr. Covia Boyd, LPC.
I am motivated to help the client populations which may be reluctant to seek therapeutic help on emotional issues due to stigmas associated with mental health counseling.
These would include cultural stigmas as well as social stigmas.
An example would be individuals who work in stressful environments, such as first responders and critical health professionals. There are often mental health issues associated with these types of professionals, including substance use disorder and/or PTSD, that go untreated.
I offer an empathetic and non-judgmental approach to mental health counseling, emphasizing unconditional positive regard toward the client population.
As an advocate for those suffering from mental distress, I am eager to learn from my supervisors, cohort, colleagues, and most of all from YOU... the client, as we work towards the mutual goal of helping you to live your best life now.
I am also interested in working with pre-teens, teens, and young adults around issues of grief and loss, trauma, and emotional/ behavioral challenges.
As a Student-Intern, I do not take insurance.
However, I am able to offer therapy services to the community at little-to-no cost, depending upon the needs of the client and whether or not we are a good fit.
Below is a list of my services, along with my rates for Private Pay:
Individual Therapy (50-minute Session)- $35.00
Couples Therapy (90-minute Session)- $50.00
Family Therapy Session (90-minute Session)- $75.00
I do offer Sliding Scale and pro bono with demonstrated need... just ask!
I also offer FREE MENTAL HEALTH SCREENINGS to help individuals determine if there is a need for mental health therapy services!!
You've made an important first step in your healing journey. Come on in, look around, checkout our flavor and style as therapists and coaches, and let's see if we're a good fit...