The faculty of the counselor education program is dedicated to educating and training counselor education professionals to function in culturally diverse settings. Lenoir-Rhyne University is located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and has a large urban population; yet, we also serve suburban and rural communities. From this unique vantage point, we recognize the need to address the economic, educational, and social inequalities that prevail in our community.
The program acknowledges a commitment both to the students who will pursue preparation as professional counselors and to the larger public served by our graduates, for whom we all share a responsibility. It is due to this commitment that the faculty holds high standards in the process of training professional counselors. As a result, we expect our students to develop a commitment to service to others, and to the pursuit of excellence in the counseling profession.
The programs are designed to provide a challenging, yet supportive environment that promotes professional orientation, development of a counseling identity, practice, commitment to inquiry, and self-awareness. Graduate education in the Counselor Education program is designed to help students realize their potential as practicing counselor and administrators, engage in professional relationships, and develop a set of meaningful professional values. To this end, the program reflects current knowledge from lay and professional groups concerning current and projected counseling and human development needs of a pluralistic society. Cultural considerations are emphasized so that the experiences provided will be rewarded and useful in today's ever-changing society.
The faculty is dedicated to the recruitment, retention, education, and training of diverse counseling professionals. The faculty select, encourage and retain students in the counselor education specialties who exhibit the potential to become competent counselors and administrators. In order to prepare competent practitioners, the faculty, through a program of planned educational experiences, attempts to assist our students in becoming knowledgeable, ethical, collegial and self-actualizing agents of change.
The counselor education program is based on the model that effective counselor must be more than technicians. Rather, they must be professionals who are aware of their personal values, beliefs, and biases, as well as possess vast knowledge and skills related to the profession of counseling. They must be able to analyze, synthesize, and apply their knowledge and skills, utilize research for professional judgments, and assess the effectiveness of their work in order to function as competent, ethical, reflective, practitioner-scientists.
The counselor education program seeks to develop such professionals through active learning experiences, course work that covers a variety of content areas, and integrated field experiences that provide counseling services to a wide range of clients/students. Multicultural and diversity issues are integrated throughout the program.