The Counseling Psychology Program at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities Campus is committed to creating and supporting a multicultural training environment that brings together individuals and groups from diverse cultural backgrounds, acknowledges and respects individual and cultural diversity, and fosters personal and professional learning and growth in multicultural self-awareness, knowledge, skills, and experiences.
In accordance with the American Psychological Association, we view individual and cultural diversity as including, but not limited to, age, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, language, national origin, race, religion, culture, sexual orientation, and social economic status. Demographic distinctions are not the only markers of diversity; we also recognize that other groups of people have historically been underrepresented in higher education, including counseling psychology, and/or marginalized in society. As a graduate training program, we strive to maintain a faculty and student body that is inclusive of these diverse life experiences.
The Counseling Psychology program is committed to the recruitment and selection of students with a diversity of views and experiences, particularly individuals from underrepresented and marginalized groups in psychology and the larger field of behavioral sciences. Whenever possible, we nominate incoming graduate students for university-wide graduate fellowships, including the Diversity of Views and Experiences (DOVE) graduate fellowship for individuals of diverse ethnic, racial, economic, and educational backgrounds and experiences who have been traditionally underrepresented in graduate programs. Because of the outstanding caliber of the applicants to our program, students have been very successful in receiving these fellowships. Additionally, faculty and graduate students actively participate in a number of academic pipeline programs within the Department and University that encourage high school and college students to consider graduate education and careers in psychology through mentored research collaboration and summer training programs.
The Counseling Psychology program is committed to retaining and graduating students from diverse backgrounds and actively works with our admissions office and minority recruitment coordinator in the Department of Psychology, as well as with the College of Liberal Arts, the Graduate School, and the Office for Equity and Diversity. Just under half (42%) of our currently enrolled students identify themselves as ethnic/racial minorities or international students. Our current graduate students represent 16 undergraduate institutions, 10 states, and 3 countries.
We recognize that all students may be confronted with institutional, economic, social, cultural, and personal barriers that may impede their academic progress. We strive to create a nurturing and supportive environment that enables students to anticipate and overcome such barriers and to provide resources on campus and in the community that offer additional support. We also actively work with graduate students to compete for graduate funding designated for underrepresented groups seeking graduate education in psychology. In recent years, Counseling Psychology graduate students have received graduate funding from the APA Minority Fellowship Program and the MacArthur Scholars Program for the Study of Global Change.
Recent graduates of our program have pursued careers in academia at community colleges, professional psychology schools, and research universities; consultation and human resource management in the corporate sector; and counseling and therapy practices in community, hospital, and university settings.
The study of individual differences is a founding principle and a long tradition in the Department of Psychology and specifically within the Counseling Psychology Program. The faculty view individual and cultural diversity within this broad framework of individual differences and emphasize the importance of using strong methodologies to study individuals and groups within their unique social and cultural contexts. All core faculty members in the Program have conducted research and supervised graduate student research on racial/ethnic minority populations and other underserved, underrepresented groups.
The Counseling Psychology Program attempts to infuse multicultural issues into all core courses and practice experiences as best as possible and continually re-evaluates its effort to integrate cultural diversity into the curriculum. Additionally, graduate students are required to complete formal coursework in Multicultural Psychology (PSY 8541). Students have the opportunity to gain counseling practicum experiences in a variety of settings that include traditionally underserved populations. Sites available include community mental health centers that serve primarily ethnic minorities, immigrants, and low-income communities; a site that specializes in the treatment of torture victims and refugees; a counseling center for women; and a wide variety of specialty sites that address a range of client presenting concerns.
The Counseling Psychology Program strives to create a learning and research environment that encourages open discourse on all issues of individual and cultural diversity. As researchers, counselors, and instructors, faculty and students are expected to abide by the APA Guidelines for Multicultural Education, Training, Research, Practice, and Organizational Change for Psychologists, which recommend specific professional behaviors to aid in the provision of services for an increasingly diverse society. Faculty and students also are expected to foster an environment that actively acknowledges and values diversity and is free from racism, sexism, and other forms of prejudice, intolerance or harassment, as outlined by the University's Diversity, Equal Employment Opportunity, and Affirmative Action Policy.
Jo-Ida C. Hansen
N556 Elliott Hall