Gina Smith, M.A., LMFT

Adjunct Professor, MACC
Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist, LMFT #52269

Gina Smith joined the MACC Program as an adjunct faculty member in 2017. She came to PLNU with approximately 12-years of mental and behavioral health experience and over 12-years of financial management experience. Gina has served in a variety of clinical settings including inpatient and outpatient chemical dependency recovery programs, hospice care, and in private practice. Since 2014, Gina has served as a Consultant to the Department of Navy’s Civilian Workforce where she provides short-term, solution-focused counseling to civilian employees. She also provides behavioral and mental health consultation services to managers, supervisors, and executive leaders.  Gina also presents on a variety of health and wellness topics throughout San Diego County.  She spent 3-years teaching at the undergraduate level in PLNU’s Department of Psychology.  Gina is a licensed marriage and family therapist and has completed specialized training in chemical dependency.


  • Ph.D., Behavioral Health, Arizona State University, In Progress
  • M.A., Marital and Family Therapy, Bethel University, 2008
  • B.A., Business Administration, Point Loma Nazarene University, 1993

Specialized Training

  • Addiction, Trauma, and Co-occurring Disorders
  • CAADAC Level I Certification
  • EMDR Level II (Eye Movement and Desensitization Reprocessing)
  • Dream Interpretation and Analysis
  • Gestalt Play Therapy with Children (California Association for Play Therapy)

Courses Taught

PSY628  Abuse Assessment and Reporting
PSY645 Group Counseling
PSY675 Treatment of Substance Use Disorders

Experience in Field

Teaching Experience

  • Point Loma Nazarene University, Adjunct Professor, 2017-Present
  • Point Loma Nazarene University, Adjunct Professor, 2008-2011

Clinical Experience

  • Magellan Health Services, Consultant, 2014-Present
  • Center for Enriching Relationships, LMFT, 2008-Present
  • Sharp Healthcare, Sharp McDonald Center, Counselor/Medical Social Worker, 2009-2013
  • CRC Health Home Avenue Clinic, Counselor, 2008-2009
  • San Diego Hospice & Palliative Care, Counselor, 2007-2008

Awards and Honors

2015-2017 Service Excellence Recognition Program (SERP) Award, Magellan Healthcare

Achieved the SERP Award for 12-consecutive quarters which recognizes excellent performance in behavioral health consulting; including, delivery of service hours, client satisfaction surveys and chart audit reviews.

2013 Center of Recognized Excellence (CORE) Award Winner, Sharp Healthcare

Created, designed and implemented the Social Services Department’s intranet site which included an overview of the department’s core functions, a complete list of staff members, staff photos, contact information and biographies, and a list of department activities and achievements. This project was implemented to increase employee awareness of the department and enhance the team environment.

2011 Center of Recognized Excellence (CORE) Award Winner, Sharp Healthcare

Co-created and implemented the “Rock Out Ceremony” on the Chemical Dependency Unit. This program was developed to enhance the patient experience when discharging from the hospital. Patients are presented with a “SHARP U ROCK” polished stone as a memento for their early steps in recovery. Patients are provided with an opportunity to share their experience of hope and encouragement in recovery.

Dissertations, Presentations, and Publications

Bachman, I., Newsom, V., & Smith, G. (2017, September).  Motivational Interviewing: Refresher training course. Live webinar presentation for Magellan Healthcare Services.

Smith, G. (2014-2017).  Health & Wellness Seminar Topics: Addiction in the Workplace, Balancing Work and Personal Life, Burnout and Stress Management, Dealing with Challenging Interactions, Downsizing and Job Loss, Effective Communication, Civility in the Workplace, Mental Health in the Workplace, Suicide Awareness, Time Management, Transitions in the Workplace.  Guest presentation for the Department of Navy Civilian Employee Assistance Program, San Diego, CA.

Smith, G. (2011, Oct). Addiction and the family: Interventions, tools and resources for Family Members. Guest lecture presentation for the Sharp McDonald Center Chemical Dependency Speaker Series, San Diego, CA.

Smith, G. (2009-2011). Life skills in recovery: Creating and implementing an action plan. Guest lecture presentation at Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital, San Diego, CA.

Smith, G. (2009-2011).  A cognitive behavioral approach to treating chemical dependency. Guest lecture presentation at Sharp Mesa Vista Hospital, San Diego, CA.

Smith, G. (2008, Dec). Addiction counseling from a family systems perspective. Case study presentation, CRC Health Care, San Diego, CA.

Smith, G. (2007-2010). Preparing for graduate studies and a career in counseling psychology. Guest lecture presentation at Point Loma Nazarene University, San Diego, CA.

Smith, G. (2007, June). Survivors of suicide: Assessment and intervention. Family Case Presentation, San Diego Hospice & Palliative Care, San Diego, CA.

Clark, K., Irwin-Chase, H., Robertson, G., & Wostrel, K. (2007, April). Effects of study abroad on the identity formation process. Poster session presented at the 77th annual convention of the Rocky Mountain Psychological Association, Denver, CO.