Virginia Counselors Association 2018 Annual Convention! Norfolk, VA.

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Hello! My name is Jessica Bardenheier and I am a second year graduate student at Longwood University in the Counselor Education program, Mental Health Counseling Track. I recently attended the VCA Annual Convention in Norfolk, Virginia. It was an incredible experience! Many current students from the cohort attended as well as professors and alumni. I felt right at home with all the friendly faces!

The convention offered a wide variety of sessions, covering diverse topics in the field of counseling. As well, I attended an awards ceremony to be recognized by the Virginia Counselors Association Foundation as a 2018 Pete Warren Fellows. I got to receive the award from my current professor and Department Chair, Dr. Kevin Doyle. This made the whole experience feel like it came full-circle because of all the Lancer representation at the convention and awards ceremony! We filled two big tables!

My favorite sessions at the convention focused on trauma-informed care, self-care for clinicians, and utilizing the concept of “positive triggers” and compassion in crisis situations, in order to re-frame cognitions, and minimize traumatization on clients. I felt that everyone at the conference was like-minded in that there was a palpable passion for this helping profession being expressed and felt throughout. It was energizing to be around so many well-versed counselors from all over the Commonwealth of Virginia and to be able to learn and grow with them.

Specifically, it was especially refreshing to see so many sessions being presented by other graduate students, not just professors. This allowed me to see the depth of work that is being done at all levels of this profession and how many amazing, well-rounded Counselor Education programs there are in the state. I saw sessions from students at JMU, Virginia Tech, and others. Longwood was in good company at this convention! This also made me start thinking about doctoral programs once I graduate because of all the growth opportunities in this field.

I am very grateful for the opportunity to have received a travel grant from Longwood for this event. Without it, I would not have been able to engage in this caliber of professional development in such an intentional and meaningful way. I highly recommend seeking out professional development opportunities and avenues to represent the graduate cohorts within Longwood Graduate Studies! This opportunity allowed me to grown in my professional and therapeutic identity as a counselor and graduate student. I am looking forward to VCA’s 2019 convention and to have an even great Longwood turnout!

VSCA Conference 2018

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I had the opportunity to attend the Virginia School Counselor Association (VSCA) Conference on October 17th-October 19th in Hampton, Virginia.  As a school counselor, it was awesome to learn new ways to support students in achieving their social/emotional, academic, and career goals.  I also had the opportunity to learn new activities and techniques to utilize when working with students.  One of my favorite sessions was “Calm Down Smack Down” during this session the participants learned how to create calm down stations for students to utilize during the school day.  I  had the opportunity to create mindfulness bottles and stress balls as part of the “Calm Down Smack Down” session.  Lastly, it was nice to network with counselors from the elementary, middle, and high school level.   I am looking forward to attending the VSCA conference next year!!!

VSCA Conference Picture

VSCA 2018

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It was such a rewarding opportunity to be able to attend the Virginia School Counselor Association conference this year. It felt great to be around school counselors who were passionate about their jobs and students. As a graduate student, they had opportunities for us to mingle with current professionals each night. They even hosted a graduate student cafe for all current graduate students. At this cafe, I had the opportunity to have my resume reviewed by a current director of school counseling in Roanoke schools. She also provided helpful tips when at an interview. The sessions I attended provided multiple resources and information to help me in my future as a school counselor and in my current internship. I am grateful to the College of Graduate and Professional Studies for supporting me with this opportunity.

 

ASHA Conference 2018!

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Hello!

My name is Molly Dailey, and I am a 2nd year graduate student in the Communication Sciences and Disorders Masters program in hopes of becoming a speech-language pathologist. Recently, Longwood’s College of Graduate and Professional Studies provide me with the wonderful opportunity to travel to Boston, Massachusetts to present at our national conference on my thesis research. During the conference, I got the opportunity to connect with current professionals in my field, and listen to current evidence-based practice lectures on assessment methods and therapy tools to use in the future. Throughout the weekend, I felt it was most useful to listen to other well-known professionals talk about upcoming issues in our field that I may face upon graduation. For example, many sessions talked about the need to standardize our approaches for assessing and treating clients with swallowing disorders. It was interesting to listen and talk with a range of professionals about these various things that could potentially impact my future career. I also found it beneficial to reach out with future employers and professionals to begin networking and finding my place within our profession. I felt it was important to introduce myself and begin to make those connects for the development of my career later on. Overall, I found the entire conference to be very informative, and I would highly recommend all graduate and current professionals to attend in the future!

Agents of Change – VSCA 2018

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Hello! My name is Emory Read and I am a graduate student in the Counselor Education program and I am in the School Counseling Track. This past October, I had the opportunity to attend the 2018 Virginia School Counselor Association Conference. I was able to network with other school counselors and learn valuable information that will help me as a future school counselor. They had wonderful keynote speakers who spoke about how school counselors can make an impact. There were also representatives from various colleges/universities, companies, and programs who had information to give that would be helpful to us in the school counseling profession.

It was amazing to experience this conference with my classmates and be around so many people who are passionate about making a difference in the lives of students. There were various breakout sessions that we could attend that ranged from learning about classroom management to learning how to use mindfulness/yoga in the classroom. I went to a session called “How do you want to change the world”, which stood out to me because the purpose of this session was to change the way that we talk to students about what they want to do in the future.

I would recommend going to a professional conference if you get the opportunity because not only are they a great experience, but it really makes you appreciate the profession that you are going into. I am already looking forward to the VSCA conference for next year!

Virginia School Counselor Association (VSCA) Conference 2018

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I am Amy Ligon, second-year school counseling graduate student. I had the opportunity to attend the Virginia School Counselor Association’s annual conference in Hampton Virginia. I attended the conference with several of my fellow Longwood University school counseling classmates. It was a wonderful experience. I volunteered Wednesday afternoon at the registration booth where I got to meet several school counselors from around Virginia who were attending the conference as well. Thursday, we attended three to four breakout sessions covering topics pertaining to all levels of school counseling. I also had the opportunity to attend the graduate student career café where I received feedback on my resume and interview tips from seasoned school counselors from all over Virginia. On Friday we attended three more breakout sessions. I enjoyed the breakout sessions that were interactive and had fun take homes to bring back to my internship. I did actually end up using two activities that were introduced to me VSCA at my internship the following week. After the breakout sessions on Friday, we packed up and headed back to Farmville. All in all, VSCA was a great experience. I am already looking forward to the conference next year.

VSCA Conference

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I had the opportunity to attend the Virginia School Counselor Association (VSCA) Conference on October 17th-October 19th in Hampton, Virginia.  As a school counselor, it was awesome to learn new ways to support students in achieving their social/emotional, academic, and career goals.  I also had the opportunity to learn new activities and techniques to utilize when working with students.  One of my favorite sessions was “Calm Down Smack Down” during this session the participants learned how to create calm down stations for students to utilize during the school day.  I  had the opportunity to create mindfulness bottles and stress balls as part of the “Calm Down Smack Down” session.  Lastly, it was nice to network with counselors from the elementary, middle, and high school level.   I am looking forward to attending the VSCA conference next year!!!

VSCA Conference Picture

VSCA 2018 Conference: Agents of Change

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Experiencing my first Virginia School Counseling Association Conference was an amazing opportunity to network, gain knowledge on different topics, and receive practical resources to use at my internship.  My entire cohort attended the conference, where we had the chance to go to different sessions and share the information we learned to one another. The session that stuck out to me the most was called: “Suicide and Non-Suicidal Self-Injury: Prevention, Intervention, and Postvention”  presented by Melissa Reeves. One of the greatest takeaways was learning the differences between non-suicidal self injury and suicide and ways in which school counselors can promote suicide prevention. One example could be complete training with administrators and staff on Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training (ASIST).

One of my favorite parts of the conference was being able to volunteer with my classmate. We were given the role of check-in on the first day of the conference. It was a perfect opportunity to welcome each member to the conference. I also enjoyed introducing myself and hearing stories as a school counselor. I gained a lot of insight on the role of a school counselor, as well as, made connections with counselors in the field. Overall, I had an amazing time at the conference and I look forward to returning next year!

SHAV 2018

Going to the Speech-Language-Hearing Association of Virginia (SHAV) 2018 Conference was quite the experience. For the past few months, we have all been working diligently on perfecting our posters and presenting skills. Turns out all of that hard work paid off because Jalyn Taylor, Seraphina Chabinec, and I won first place for student poster presentations! Through my presenting at SHAV, I learned how to be confident in my work, and converse with professionals about my research in a professional way. I was also able to attend multiple sessions that not only taught me about topics that will impact my future practice, but that also got me excited about the career I have chosen. Let me know if you need some information about over-the-counter hearing aids!

SHAV Conference 2018

I’m so fortunate to have attended the Speech-Language- Hearing Association of Virginia conference in Williamsburg! During this conference, I learned about a variety of topics including augmentative-alternative communication, selective mutism, and collaboration within the school system. The session that was most interesting to me was about selective mutism, which according to the presenter, is a childhood anxiety disorder that inhibits a child’s inability to speak and communicate within social settings. The presenter discussed how the disorder gave the child “feelings of death” whenever they were required to speak and she provided some helpful therapy techniques that therapists can use when working with these children to help them overcome some of that anxiety. In addition to the sessions, I was also able to network and meet some great people who shared the same or similar interests. They provided me with ideas and techniques that I can utilize in my practice. I am so incredibly grateful to Longwood Graduate Studies for providing me the grant to attend this conference and I can’t wait to go again next year!

 

 

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