Fellow counselors and counselors-in-training:
As a committee, it has taken us time to respond to the events that have transpired in the past few months. Many committee members were impacted by the hateful acts and rhetoric toward communities of color and undocumented communities. Politics aside, before we are counselors, we are humans. Clinical training, research interests, and service aside, we are humans. It is through this humanity that the ACA Graduate Student Committee extends its support, compassion, and concern to and for those affected by recent events rooted in bigotry, hatred, and nationalism. As lives are stolen by gun violence and families are shattered by immigration policies, we acknowledge the pain and horror associated with such events. We personally struggle with how to be most helpful during these times, but we understand that one thing we can be is present. We are here for those feeling the emotional consequences of hate. This committee strives to provide a safe place for all people regardless of legal status, race, ethnicity, age, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, religion, or cultural identity.
ACA has multiple resources available that might be helpful for you, your clients, and/or your community members: https://www.counseling.org/knowledge-center/mental-health-resources. In addition, please consider this committee a resource for you. As a committee, we want to amplify voices for those of you who were impacted by these events and welcome comments on ways you want to see the ACA Graduate Student Committee focus initiatives to advocate as a profession for the betterment of all our clients. We want you to know that we have not forgotten about you. As a note, it is essential that we, as counselors, seek to find a space to process our own experiences in order to be fully present for our clients who may have been impacted.
Graduate Student and New Professional Blogs
We are all taking 12-15 credit hours per semester, participating in research opportunities, managing work schedules, maintaining a social/family life, or we just transitioned into our New Professional role and have no idea what we are doing! ACA’s Graduate Student and New Professional Blog offers real life vignettes of life, academics, and how to keep yourself afloat despite your crazy schedule. Any suggestions for what you would like to hear more about, please email the Graduate Student Committee.
Columns can be reprinted in full or in part with attribution to the American Counseling Association’s Graduate Student and New Professional Blog.