Field Work

New grad incorporated goats into her thesis

Teri Berbel


For Teri Berbel (’23 MSW), one of UTA’s newest grads, her classroom was the outdoors. Some of her classmates? Goats.

Berbel says that goat yoga, where you practice surrounded by the four-legged creatures, helped with her own self-healing following a divorce. A certified yoga instructor herself, she taught the Charity Goat Yoga class at her advanced field placement at The Hope Place in Mansfield.

As part of her thesis, she studied how goats in a yoga class can affect mental well-being.

Berbel credited Professor Regina T. Praetorius, who chaired Berbel’s thesis committee, for her mentorship, along with other social work faculty for giving her the tools to help others on their own journeys.

“Dr. Praetorius provided invaluable insight and guidance for me to get the most from my time in the School of Social Work,” Berbel says.

Praetorius had her own kind words, praising Berbel for using her own mental health journey to help others looking for similar healing.

“Many times, people drawn to social work want to jump into helping without first helping themselves,” Praetorius says. “That just doesn’t work. Our healing journey has to continue as we walk with our clients in their healing. Teri has a very good handle on this.”

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Winter 2024 Magazine

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