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UW Counseling Student Receives National Scholarship

May 4, 2018
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Jessica Ryan

A University of Wyoming College of Education graduate student has received an $8,000 rural scholarship from the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) Foundation.

Jessica Ryan, from Grove City, Pa., is pursuing her master’s degree in counseling at UW. The rural scholarship is awarded to counseling students who are from rural communities and commit to practicing in rural areas upon graduation.

Ryan plans to integrate her counseling degree with her yoga, life-coaching and wellness experiences to serve rural populations and address topics such as trauma, suicide prevention, grief, resilience and intergenerational trauma in underserved areas. She already holds trauma-informed, evidence-based, holistic, mind-body and self-regulation classes.

With her degree, Ryan hopes to expand her one-on-one services and group trainings, and offer continuing education to other professionals so these tools can be offered in rural practices across Wyoming and the nation. As a first-generation college student from a rural area, Ryan has a passion for community building, networking and social justice issues, and she hopes to use this award to advocate for quality mental health and healing opportunities for those underserved in rural regions.

The mission of the NBCC Foundation is to leverage the power of counseling by strategically focusing resources for positive change. The foundation created the rural scholarship in 2009 to improve access to counseling services in rural communities, which suffer disproportionately from a lack of mental health care. More than 75 students from across the country applied for the six 2018 rural scholarships.

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