We have settled into our new home in the Health Professions Building, and most (not all, but most) of our boxes are unpacked.
Those of us with south-facing windows get to watch the construction of the Foundational Sciences Building, right behind ours. Come Fall 2021, with its completion, the East Quad will look very different.
We have hosted several events in the building, including receptions for Roger Hutchinson and for the Ball State University-wide psychologists in the Fall. This winter we have hosted two more events: a workshop on Rapid Resolution Therapy (taught by one of our alumna, LaDonna Hayden), and the doctoral program’s on-campus interview day.
We have also had random visits from various alumni – some coming by to show off our campus to their children who are college shopping, while others were just passing through town and stopped to say hello. We love having visitors and getting the opportunity to show off the new space!
In other news, we are in the middle of a very busy Spring Semester (well, really, they are all busy, but this one feels particularly fast).
Besides the workshop I already mentioned, we may have a second workshop in the works for spring or early summer. We have a wide variety of conferences coming up in the next couple of months.
Dr. Kite and some students will be traveling to MISTOP (Midwest Institute for Students and Teachers of Psychology at the College of DuPage in Illinois in early March.
Dr. Thiem will travel with students to the Midwestern Psychological Association convention in Chicago in late April.
The Indiana Counseling Association conference is in June this year, at the University of Indianapolis (not sure who is attending that one just yet).
In addition, many of the doctoral students and faculty will be in New Orleans in early April for the 2020 Counseling Psychology Conference. This one only occurs every 6 years, and so it feels like a family reunion. The conference hotel is in the French Quarter, and there is at least one festival happening in the Quarter at the same time, which will make things just a little crazy!
One last thing before I finish this off.
We have faith that our alumni will go out and do well in the world, but we don’t always get to hear what they have done. One exception to that rule is that of Father Andre Sylvestre, Haitian resident, Catholic Priest, and graduate of Ball State’s MA program in counseling.
When he finished the program in January 2010, he prepared for his return home. Just before he left, Haiti was rocked with a particularly devastating earthquake. Father Andre headed home as quickly as he could, and went to work in an overwhelming situation: high needs, few resources (human or material), and constant fear of repeat tremors.
He knew there weren’t enough counselors to help manage all of the trauma. So, he contacted several of the faculty and some of his peers to ask for support and resources as he started training young medical students to be peer professional counselors.
He did so much, at the drop of a hat. In the ensuing years, he achieved his dream of opening setting up an orphanage, which is still going strong. I believe several of his peers have stayed in contact, raising funds for the orphanage or taking students to Haiti to do some work.
Father Andre is an example of social change in motion, and we are so proud of him!
Best wishes to you all in 2020!