The end of the academic year brought a special celebration for those graduating from the GSE’s mental health counseling program. In a ceremony attended by faculty, students and the dean that reflected on their journey to graduation, the soon-to-be graduates noted they had had a markedly different experience than students in previous years. The cohort entered the GSE, for the most part, when the world was shutting down due to COVID. Their studies went completely online, then to a hybrid model, and then finally back to being able to study together in person. However, these challenges also created a great bond and sense of community among them.
The celebratory program was hosted by SAM (Student Association for Mental Health Counseling). SAM supports team building, social activities, professional development events, and opportunities for students in the mental health counseling program. The organization also provides exposure to clinical and career pathways.