Ilene Schroeder oral history interview, 2016-05-13

Karuna Counseling Oral History Project
Ilene Schroeder oral history interview, 2016-05-13
Schroeder, Ilene
Contributor to Resource:
Abbott, Franklin
Date of Original:
Women psychotherapists--United States--Georgia
Women--Social conditions
Jewish women--United States
Communal living--United States--Georgia
Feminists--United States--Georgia
Students--Political activity
United States, Georgia, Fulton County, Atlanta, 33.749, -84.38798
United States, Georgia, Fulton County, 33.79025, -84.46702
United States, Georgia, Clarke County, Athens, 33.96095, -83.37794
United States, Georgia, Clarke County, 33.9511683, -83.367332
United States, Georgia, Rabun County, Clayton, 34.8781479, -83.4009933
United States, Georgia, Rabun County, 34.8816822, -83.4021366
oral histories (literary works)
In this interview, Ilene Schroeder begins by talking about her family and briefly talks about her childhood. She describes moving to Georgia from Brooklyn and feeling like an outsider, then becoming more comfortable with herself while at the University of Georgia. She talks about the feminist and anti-war activism she engaged in as a college student. Schroeder talks about living in various parts of Georgia in a communal situation with some friends, including a stint in Clayton, Ga., where she and her housemates were threatened with violence. She describes feeling aimless after college, then gaining a sense of purpose when she began working as a counselor at the Community Crisis Center in Atlanta, which was founded by some of her friends, and after giving birth to her son Chad. Schroeder talks about her experiences, both positive and negative, at Karuna Counseling, and she and Franklin Abbott discuss the current state of the profession of psychotherapy. She also talks about her views on the current state of social and political life in the United States. She talks about her love of baseball, her parents' deaths, and her feelings about her own life and how they have changed as she has aged.
Established in 1974, the original mission of Karuna Counseling was to provide high quality, compassionate care for women. Over the years the practice has grown, developed and expanded its focus, and it now provides holistic psychotherapy services to men, women, adolescents, families, couples, businesses, and organizations in the Atlanta, Ga. area. The Karuna Counseling Oral History Project aims to document the history of the counseling practice through peer interviews with its therapists.
Ilene Schroeder was born in 1947 and grew up in Brooklyn, N.Y. Both sides of her family immigrated to New York from Eastern Europe. She moved to Georgia with her family after high school and enrolled at the University of Georgia. At UGA, she participated in anti-war activism and became interested in women's issues. After college, Schroeder spent some time working odd jobs and living with a group of friends in various parts of Georgia, then in 1970 she started working at the Community Crisis Center in Atlanta, where she eventually became director of counseling. Schroeder joined Karuna Counseling in 1974, the year it opened. She began working toward a PhD at Georgia State University in 1980 and left Karuna in 1981. She has practiced privately as a therapist since then.
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Bibliographic Citation (Cite As):
Schroeder, Ilene, interviewed by Franklin Abbott, May 13, 2016, Karuna Counseling Oral History Project, Archives for Research on Women and Gender. Special Collections and Archives, Georgia State University.
Holding Institution:
Georgia State University. Special Collections