GSE counseling student receives national fellowship

marie-mcmahonPSU student Marie McMahon is the recipient of the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) Minority Fellowship. She is in the Clinical Mental Health program in the GSE and also working toward the GSE Certificate in Trauma-Informed Therapy. The NBCC award covers a substantial portion of her graduate-level tuition at PSU.

“We are all very proud of Marie’s efforts and thankful she is part of our program,” said Assistant Professor Joel Lane, who teaches in the program. “Marie has a creative spirit and an interest in using art as a therapeutic tool, which I think will be very powerful in her work with underserved transition-aged youth.” Continue reading

PSU school counseling alumna Holly Vaughn-Edmonds receives statewide honors

holly-vaughn-edmondsFranklin High School Counselor Holly Vaughn-Edmonds, ’02, was named the 2016 Oregon School Counselor of the Year by the Oregon School Counselor Association (OSCA). She received the honors at the organization’s fall conference in October. She is a graduate of the GSE’s School Counseling Program. She has been a practicing school counselor for 17 years, most recently at Franklin High School where she focuses on career and college readiness.

“Holly’s creative spirit and big heart make for strong collaboration with her colleagues, partners, and college resources,” said Juanita Valder, Franklin High School principal.

As the Oregon School Counselor of the Year, she is automatically a nominee for the American School Counselor Association National School Counselor of the Year. Continue reading

Associate Professor Lisa Aasheim receives statewide counseling award

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Lisa Aasheim is congratulated by incoming ORCA president and GSE faculty member Joel Lane

Associate Professor Lisa Aasheim is the 2016 recipient of the Leona Tyler Award from the Oregon Counseling Association (ORCA). This is the organization’s highest award and recognizes counselors who have made outstanding contributions to the profession and whose work has had statewide implications for counseling. She received the award at their fall conference in Portland, November 5, 2016.

Aasheim is an ’02 graduate of the PSU Marital, Couple & Family Counseling program and holds a PhD in counselor education and supervision from Oregon State University.

She teaches in PSU’s counseling program, is the director of the PSU Community Counseling Clinic that provides low-cost counseling services to the PSU community, and has a private practice in marriage and family counseling. Continue reading

Coloring book helps African children with grief

Susan Halverson bookImages of grieving orphans in Third World countries are common on the television, and while they may tug at our hearts, it’s difficult to find an appropriate response or know how to help. But the GSE’s Susan Halverson-Westerberg did just that.

In 2013, Halverson-Westerberg visited Kenya, where she met with Reverend David Chuchu, director of the Diakonia Compassionate Ministry in Kisumu, which provides support for children who have lost their parents due to conflict, famine, or illness. Halverson-Westerberg’s local church, Zion Lutheran of Portland, Oregon, supports this mission, and she and her husband Jim traveled there to see the newly built Rescue Center.

Susan Halvorson-WesterbergHalverson-Westerberg had another reason for her trip. As a faculty member in the Counselor Education Department, she researches the impact of grief and dying on children and families. She wanted to use this trip as an opportunity to better understand how another culture deals with grief and to gain insight to develop supports and curriculum for students and children in her work locally.

“When I visited Kenya in 2013, I was very taken with the many beautiful orphans who had lost one or both parents due to illness and accidents. If there are no other family members left to help, even losing one parent can land a child in an orphanage or rescue center since that one parent cannot work and care for the child,” Halverson-Westerberg said. “I felt there was a need to give something to these children to help them feel they are still part of a larger family, since family is so important in Africa.”

Halverson-Westerberg decided to write a book that could be used as a tool to develop dialog with children who have lost one or both parents. Her book, Margaret’s Family Tree: A Story of Hope and Belonging (2016), is a coloring book designed to help children work through their grief in a constructive way and to help them acknowledge feelings about their lost loved ones. The book is written in both English and Swahili. It is illustrated in black and white by Oregon artist Edna M. Kennel. Halvorson-Westerberg is offering it free for duplication to anyone working with children, especially in African countries. A second version in color is planned for release soon.

Halverson-Westerberg is an associate professor and coordinator of the Marital, Couple, and Family Counseling specialization. She has a PhD in counselor education from the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia, and has taught at PSU since 1999.

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PSU Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling program dual accredited

CACREPThe PSU Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling program has received dual accreditation by the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) and the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE). Students in the Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling Program complete 90 credits of rehabilitation counseling and mental health counseling coursework. The program is accredited through October 31, 2023. This master of science program is one of the first of its kind across the United States to achieve successful completion of the joint accreditation process.

“This is really good news,” Graduate School of Education Dean Randy Hitz said. “Our graduates will be eligible for hiring in key federal programs, including the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and TRICARE, the health care program for service members and their families, which have recently stipulated CACREP accreditation as an employment criterion.”

CORE has worked to match their curriculum standards equally to those of CACREP and has entered into a new relationship as a corporate affiliate. This gives PSU’s Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling graduates the opportunity to apply for federal jobs and includes graduates who have completed the program up to 18 months prior to this decision.

“The PSU Clinical Rehabilitation program trains counselors who specialize in chronic illness and disability,” said Tina Anctil, Counselor Education Department chair and Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling program coordinator. “Clinical rehabilitation counselors address the psychosocial, mental health, and career needs to help clients with disabilities achieve the highest quality of life possible. We are excited to receive this accreditation that reflects the high-quality training our program provides to meet the needs of our community.”

The PSU Clinical Rehabilitation program is ranked 18th in the country by US News and World Report.

GSE’s other entry-level counseling programs—Clinical Mental Health Counseling, and Marital, Couple and Family Counseling—are accredited by CACREP through March 31, 2018, and School Counseling is accredited through March 31, 2024.

To learn more about the GSE Counselor Education programs, contact the GSE or visit the Counselor Education website.

 

New grant will train diverse rehabilitation counselors

PSU_FlagThe PSU Graduate School of Education (GSE) has obtained a grant in the amount $998,650 to train 35 scholars for work in vocational rehabilitation agencies and community-based rehabilitation service providers. The Clinical Rehabilitation Counseling program (CLRC) grant is from the US Department of Education, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS).

The funding will allow the GSE to recruit higher numbers of graduate students who have backgrounds as members of groups traditionally underrepresented and underserved. “Providing more high-quality culturally competent counselors is essential to meet the growing demand in the clinical rehabilitation field,” says Principal Investigator Tina Anctil. “Our aging population and the continuing needs of groups such as veterans predict that the demand for clinical rehabilitation counselors will continue to grow.”

The CLRC is a 90-credit master’s program that is nationally accredited by the Council on Rehabilitation Education (CORE) and is under review by Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs (CACREP) for a new accreditation that became available recently. The PSU Rehabilitation Counseling program is well regarded in the country. In 2014 it was named 18th in the US by US News and World Report. The PSU Counselor Education program opened in 1968.