We had the opportunity to sit down and interview Kristi Kline, USF Sacramento MFT graduate. Kristi does a lot for her hospital and is very busy, so we were thrilled that she took the time to speak with us!
After earning her bachelor degree from University of California Santa Barbara, Kristi Kline attended an information meeting at the USF Sacramento Campus seeking to join the MFT program. Kristi felt the environment of the Sacramento Campus was warm and inviting. The MFT program sounded like a convenient way to get a masters degree.
After being accepted into the MFT program, Kristi enjoyed having great instructors and a supportive cohort network to accompany her on the journey. Since graduating, Kristi has worked with Sacramento Medical Counseling for Kids and Adults, worked as a non-public school ASA Therapist, in a private practice helping autism spectrum disorders, in the ER doing psychiatric assessments, and at Heritage Oaks working with out-patient and in-patient therapy needs.
Today, Kristi Kline is the Director of Psychological Services for Sierra Vista Hospital. She oversees social services, group clinicians, therapeutic activities, and chemical dependency departments. Kristi also developed a contract with USF for Sierra Vista to allow current MFT students to do their traineeship at the hospital. She oversees these interns and gives them clinical supervision. The goal with training interns is to have them function as regular hospital staff so when it comes time to hire, they are ready.
Getting her master’s degree helped Kristi establish her career and set the foundation for her current career and future. She found the MFT program to be a great clinical program that helps you really understand theory and being hands-on with the patients, learn how to diagnosis, and how to create treatment plans. Kristi stated that the program, “Really prepares people for the real world.”
The most exciting part of Kristi’s job is there are always problems to solve. She really enjoys brainstorming, researching and finding out what needs to be done to help the patient. In the MFT profession, Kristi works really closely with other clinicians as a team to solve problems. She also enjoys the excitement of being able to cross over to different disciplines. Kristi says, “Sierra Vista is a very rich and close environment. The biggest reward is also the biggest challenge: ‘How can I help this patient within the framework.’ It’s always different and new!”
Kristi’s team is her inspiration and seeing the cohesive teamwork is truly amazing. Coming together for the common good is what this profession is all about. Seeing the differences in patients is extremely rewarding. When asked for her best piece of advice for MFT students, her response was: “Be open to opportunities.” She imagined being in a private practice but really loves working in the hospital environment. You never know what opportunities will come.
Kristi is living the career she loves and still keeps in touch with students from her cohort and professors. She thinks it’s really cool that everyone is still such a strong support system. Being a LMFT and MFC can be very stressful, and feels it is so helpful to have people that know what it is like to work in that daily life.
We thank you, Kristi Kline, for taking the time to speak with us and share your story as a USF Alum. We thank you for all that you do and continue to do to support USF, our students, your staff, clinicians, patients and more! You truly are an inspiration and we wish you the very best!