National School Counseling Week 2016, “School Counseling: The Recipe for Success,” is celebrated from Feb. 1-5, 2016, to focus public attention on the unique contribution of school counselors within U.S. school systems. National School Counseling Week, sponsored by American School Counselor Association, highlights the tremendous impact school counselors can have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career.
The special week honoring school counselors provides recognition for school counselors who “implement comprehensive school counseling programs, a vital part of the educational process for all students as they meet the challenges of the 21st century,” according to Deb Woodard, associate teaching professor and coordinator of the UMKC School of Education’s Professional School Counseling program.
In fact, Woodard, herself is bringing attention to NSCW by communicating daily with her students about a variety of activities focusing on student achievement, safe schools, multiculturalism, social justice, community partnerships and more.
“Our students are committed to their profession and are bringing positive outcomes to the students in our communities,” Woodard said. “It is important to recognize both our students and the professional school counselors in the field for their meaningful impact and commitment to students’ educational journeys.”
UMKC School of Education’s school counseling program well prepares students for their careers, requiring 700+ hours in practicum and internship, including 285-300 direct contact hours in local schools before graduation.
And, what do our alums say about their preparation and career choice?
“I love being a school counselor because I get to empower students daily and get to help them learn to manage their emotions and solve problems,” asserts Molly J. Beuke (M.A. ‘14) who serves at Stony Point South Elementary School in Kansas City, Kansas. “It is a wonderful experience to be able to be a positive influence in a child’s life. There is no one at school who is quite like the school counselor!”
Andrew Schuerman (M.A. ‘06) loves being a school counselor at Park Hill (Mo.) South High School because the best commission one can earn is helping others. “I learned early in my undergraduate years,” he explains, “that I wouldn’t be willing to be away from my family and work long hours for extra money, but I am willing to work hard as a helping professional.”
Rachel Haskamp (M.A. ‘14) school counselor for the Bunceton R-IV (Mo.) School District, echoes a similar sentiment. “I love problem solving with my students,” she says, “and how thoroughly the UMKC Counseling and Educational Psychology-School Counseling program prepares students and future practitioners.”
And Elisabeth Johnsrud (M.A. ’14) of John Fiske Elementary in Kansas City, Ks., believes school counseling gives her the “opportunity to teach kids social skills, emotional development and management while also providing the opportunity to show unconditional love to children who may not receive that kind of love at home.”
Visit us online for more information on the School’s counseling programs and additional quotes from program graduates.