Dr. Sarah Halawani Montes

Dr. Sarah Halawani Montes


Dr. Sarah Halawani Montes, Ph.D. (U.S.A.)

Counseling Psychologist

Sarah Montes (Ph.D.) is a Counseling Psychologist trained in the USA. She has over 15 years of experience addressing a wide variety of clinical concerns. Sarah’s therapeutic approach is integrative, incorporating cognitive-behavioral, person-centered and mindfulness practices. She values developing authentic, collaborative relationships with her clients, helping them tap into their own strengths while developing new coping strategies to become their best selves.

Short and long-term counseling for Teenagers and Adults.
Group counseling.

I am a Jordanian/American Doctoral-level Counseling Psychologist with more than 15 years of experience working in the USA and the UAE. I specialize in working with teenagers and adults facing various challenges.

Services offered in English and Arabic.

I am a CDA-licensed Counseling Psychologist. I earned my master’s degree in Organisational and Social Psychology from the London School of Economics in 2003. I subsequently obtained my Doctoral degree in Counseling Psychology from The University of Memphis in 2014. I did a full-time one-year internship at New Mexico State University’s Counseling Center. During that internship, I worked with students who were facing various challenges and different mental health concerns.

I have extensive training back in the U.S., experience with individual and group supervision, I speak different languages, and have diverse work experiences in terms of settings. I worked at a community mental health center, at a hospital, at multiple university counseling centers across the USA, and at schools. I worked with clients from diverse backgrounds and ones who presented with a variety of mental health difficulties. I’ve lived in different parts of the world (Jordan, UK, USA, and the UAE) and adopt a multicultural understanding of my clients and appreciate their diverse worldviews.

Sarah uses a strengths-based and collaborative approach to meet the unique needs of each client. She emphasizes on creating strong, genuine, collaborative, and open working relationships with her clients to help them develop, address, and maintain progress towards their personal goals in therapy. She seeks to decrease distress, increase coping strategies, and build on the client’s strengths. She focuses on the therapy relationship while incorporating different tools and practical strategies to help her clients improve coping and perform at their very best.

She draws from Cognitive-Behavioral, Family Systems, Humanistic, Mindfulness, Solution-Focused, and Interpersonal Treatment Approaches.

Her clinical and professional interests include treating anxiety, depression, trauma, relationship concerns, addictions, grief, group therapy, conducting a variety of personality and cognitive assessments, and vocational/career concerns.

  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Mood Disorders
  • Perfectionism and Imposter Syndrome
  • Trauma
  • Grief and loss
  • Interpersonal difficulties
  • Eating concerns
  • Addictions
  • Identity issues
  • Anger management
  • Vocational and career-related concerns
  • Group counseling
  • Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy) in Counseling Psychology from the University of Memphis (USA), 2014.
  • MSc. (Master of Science) in Organisational and Social Psychology from The London School of Economics (United Kingdom), 2004.
  • Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Psychology from Al-Ahliyya Amman University (Jordan), 1999.

I am licensed by the Community Development Authority (CDA) in Dubai since 2023. Since I was trained in the USA, I abide by the rules and regulations guiding the ethical practice set out by the American Psychological Association (APA) as well as the CDA.

  • Montes, S. H. (2014). The relationship between parenting and depressive symptomology in young Jordanian adults: Is attachment a mediator variable? (Publication No. 3648440) [Doctoral dissertation, The University of Memphis]. ProQuest Dissertations and Theses database.
  • Lease, S. H., Montes, S. H., Badgett, L. R., Sawyer, R. J., Fleming, K. M., Hampton, A. B., Ovrebo, E., Boyraz, G. (2013). A cross-cultural exploration of masculinity and relationships in men from Turkey, Norway, and the United States. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 44, 84-105.doi:10.1177/0022022111432293
  • Lease, S. H., Hampton, A. B., Fleming, K. M., Baggett, L. R., Montes, S., & Sawyer, R. J. (2010). Masculinity and interpersonal competencies: Contrasting White and African-American men. Psychology of Men & Masculinity, 11,195-207. doi:10.1037/a0018092
  • Montes, S. H., Karakashian, M., Schiro-Geist, C., Broadbent, E., & Drabowicz, J. A. (2009). The value of a study abroad program for graduate students in psychology. Psychology International, 20, 7-9. APA International Directorate Newsletter: HTTP://WWW.APA.ORG/INTERNATIONAL/PI
  • Lease, S. H., Hampton, A. B., Fleming, K. M., Baggett, L. R., Sawyer, R. J., Montes, S. H., Ovrebo, E., Ciftci, A., & Boyraz, G. (2009, August).  Masculinity and intimate relationships: Comparing U.S., Norwegian, & Turkish Men. Poster presented at the American Psychological Association Conference in Toronto, Ontario.
  • Lease, S. H., Ovrebo, E., Hampton, A. B., Baggett, L. R., Fleming, K. M., Montes, S., Sawyer, R. J. (2009, July). Masculinity attitudes and relationships: Cultural differences and meanings. Poster presented at the European Congress of Psychology in Oslo, Norway.