February 2022, almost spring break. Just as I started off last spring’s note. This week, though, it is 45 degrees and deceptively sunny as I write this (you might think it was warm, until you stepped outside for a minute). We settle into this year’s version of “normal,” with 40+ master’s students seeing clients in the training clinic, along with 20+ doctoral students. That is a lot of folks to manage. Kudos to Drs. Lina Burkhart and Betsy Varner, who spearhead the process with the help of our practicum instructors and practicum supervisors.
In that vein, we have tried to step up our technology game. When I started teaching at BSU, long before Teachers College was remodeled, we actually had VCR cameras mounted in the clinic rooms to record sessions. If the counselor didn’t remember to hit start, the session was not recorded. How anyone could miss those giant machines (the size of a boom box, I tell you), is beyond me. Moving to our basement clinic, and MUCH smaller, digital recordings, was such an upgrade! Then moving to the Health Professions Building, and the use of iPads and B-line for recordings, has been life-changing – at least in comparison to having to protect boxes of VHR tapes (and periodically erase them). We have also stepped up our game in relation to digitizing paperwork, with the Sonia system for program management. We are still working out some of the snags, and it has taken longer than we hoped, but we absolutely will get it sorted out soon. It has taken 30+ years to get to this point; imagine the changes in another 10 years!
Earlier this month, I heard from a master’s program alumnus who wanted to consult on some issues related to telehealth in his private practice. I’ve also had several other conversations in the past two or three months with master’s and doctoral alums, some going back a “few” years. Some of these folks are announcing vacancies and hoping to hire BSU grads; others are just providing updates on how their careers and their families are doing. It is always a pleasure to hear from folks we have trained, and who are now out in the world doing what I always want you to do, to wit, making me and BSU proud. My super secret, not so secret, goal for CPSY and BSU to do good in the world is definitely happening! Thank you all for what YOU do every day.
As you may know, we have hired a new administrative coordinator (Barb Irvin) and a new graduate admissions coordinator (Rachel Pleasant). We are getting adjusted to having five people working in the office again (counting our assistants Carolyn Priebe and Alysse Wiggins), which means lots of chatter, lots of laughter, a feeling of normalcy. We are much happier now.
As you may also know, we hired a new faculty member, Dr. Nick Lee. He currently works at Open Door, and is teaching Family therapy this semester. We look forward to having him in the department full time come fall.
Side note – I am pleased to say that all of our current doctoral interns have landed jobs or post doc positions, while and all six of our 23-24 intern candidates landed an internship earlier this month. Next up are the soon-to-be- graduating master’s students who are seeking post-graduation positions or admission to doctoral programs. I look forward to hearing where they all land. Two years goes by very quickly!
I will wrap this up with a huge statement of respect for two people who hit milestones this year. Dr. Gerstein has been with BSU for 40 years, while Dr. Perrone has been here for 25 years. The university will acknowledge them later this semester, but I am sharing this with all of you now. Show them some positivity when you see them!
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