Maggie Parker

Maggie Parker
Assistant Professor, Counseling and Human Development
(202) 994-8108

Maggie Parker is an Assistant Professor of Counseling and Human Development at George Washington University. Her research agenda focuses on the mental health needs of children and adolescents and developmental approaches to counseling. She is interesting in exploring the provision of play therapy services within school settings, and teaching play therapy skills to teachers and parents. Dr. Parker is also interested in exploring trauma, diversity, and expressive arts with children and adolescents.

Dr. Parker provided counseling services within diverse settings, including community mental health centers, juvenile detention centers, pre-schools, high schools, and elementary schools. She held several leadership positions within state and national associations. She hopes her research can help practitioners and scholars understand mental health needs of youth and enable greater access to counseling services for underrepresented students. Dr. Parker received her undergraduate degree from University of Richmond, her Masters in Mental Health Counseling from Southern Methodist University, and her PhD in Counselor Education, specializing in school counseling and diversity, from University of North Texas. She is a Registered Play Therapist, a Child Centered Play Therapist-Supervisor, and was a Licensed Professional Counselor-Supervisor in both Texas and Mississippi.

Ph.D., University of North Texas
M.A., Southern Methodist University
B.A., University of Richmond

This installment of the "Conversations that Matter" series was hosted by the Graduate School of Education and Human Development (GSEHD) at the George Washington University.

Moderated by Dr. Maggie Parker, Assistant Professor of Counseling at GSEHD

For months during COVID19, children have been navigating a strange world without playdates, in-person schooling, or physical interaction outside of their immediate families. And while parents may be at home, they cannot always engage with their kids during work hours. So, what will be the impact of this “pandemic life” on the mental health and wellbeing of our children? And how can parents and teachers--who are also feeling overwhelmed, exhausted and emotional--best support children during this time?

A panel of child development and mental health experts explores these questions, suggests developmentally appropriate ways to respond, and provides guidance about when therapy or additional support may be warranted.


  • Maggie M. Parker, PhD, LPC, BCS, RPT-S, CCPT-S,
    The George Washington University (moderator)
  • Kristie Opiola, PhD, LPC (Texas), RPT,
    University of North Carolina-Charlotte
  • Dee Ray, PhD, LPC-S, NCC, RPT-S,
    University of North Texas
  • Quinn K. Smelser, PhD, NCC, LPC, RPT,
    Loyola University
  • LaKaavia Taylor, PhD, LPC, NCC, RPT, CCPT,
    University of North Texas

In the News

Dr. Maggie Parker moderated a panel of experts the latest installment in GSEHD's Conversations that Matter series. If you weren't able to attend the live presentation, you can watch a video recording of the discussion about "The Impact of COVID19 on Childhood Mental Health."

Dr. Maggie Parker, Dr. Kenneth Hergenrather, GSEHD alumna Dr. Quinn Smelser, (PhD, Counseling), and GW student Catherine Kelly (PhD, Clinical Psychology) published a manuscript entitled, "Exploring child-centered play therapy and trauma: A systematic review of literature" in the International Journal of Play Therapy.

Drs. Maggie Parker and Ashley Stone published a manuscript entitled, "More Than Play: Benefits of Play Therapy Training for Undergraduates and Implications for Student Affairs" in the Journal of College Student Development.

Dr. Maggie Parker was named President-Elect of the Virginia Association of Play Therapy, and her term starts in March 2020. In addition, Dr.

Drs. Maggie Parker and Elizabeth Crunk published an article entitled "Exploring the Test-Retest Reliability of the Adlerian Personality Priority Assessment" in the Journal of Individual Psychology.