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The quality of Loyola school counselors as employees

I am Lucia Martin and I am an affiliate instructor in the school counseling program at Loyola University Maryland. I’ve worked at Loyola for almost seven years. Originally from South Carolina, I graduated from the University of South Carolina with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a Master of Education degree.

I have been a school counselor for 30 years.  As a practicing school counselor with Anne Arundel County Public Schools, many of my professional colleagues were graduates of the master’s in school counseling program at Loyola. Many of the supervising school counseling practicum students and interns were from the program as well. When I moved to a resource and then supervisory position at the central office, I interviewed many Loyola graduates for school counseling positions within the district. I also placed Loyola practicum and internship students with school counselors in the schools.

It’s always a pleasure to work with students from the program. What stood out to me most about the students, is that the graduates are knowledgeable in the field, and are able to apply their pedagogic knowledge to the actual practice of school counseling. Their skills in delivering mental health services and school counseling program services are exemplar. Generally, when we interviewed Loyola graduates from the program for jobs, it was clear they knew how to work as a professional school counselor. I should note, that when I was placing practicum students and interns with school counselors, they were always anxious to have Loyola students because they knew that they would be coming with good skills and background knowledge. 

The school counseling program at Loyola is different from other programs I’ve seen. It meets the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Education Programs (CACREP) standards at a higher level, so the students have good clinical skills when they leave the program. The program is also grounded in the American School Counselor Association (ASCA) National Model as a framework for delivery of a comprehensive school counseling program. Students develop an understanding of how a school counselor functions as a part of the school community; therefore, learning how to support students academically, behaviorally, and emotionally. 

The program at Loyola is well-known for being high quality and producing exceptional school counselors.