Recent Posts


Posted on May 18,2011 by sburnsmspp

It is sad to say that this is my final blog, as I have completed all of classes, turned in my Capstone paper, and will be graduating with my Master’s in Counseling Psychology on June 5th! Tomorrow is my last day at internship, so I’ve been busy all week saying goodbye to my clients and co-workers. I co-lead a women’s substance use group and they were so thoughtful in our group last night—everyone signed a card and the members brought me cupcakes and a plant (the plant is a pink polka dot plant and literally is pink…couldn’t have asked for a more appropriate plant for myself)!

On my last day of class on Monday my seminar professor took us to get pizza, which was fun and great to sit and socialize with my classmates outside of the classroom! That night our program organized a catered dinner for everyone in the M.A. Counseling and M.A. Forensic programs. It felt so nice to see everyone in one room and to say goodbye to all of my wonderful professors! I was completely shocked when the director of my program announced that they were starting an annual award to honor a student that demonstrated leadership in the program and they chose me. Everyone applauded for me and I was given a beautiful plaque that I can hang up in my future office. It was such an honor and I felt appreciated for all of the hard work I put in to participating in volunteer opportunities at school and representing my classmates as their class representative. What a great way to end my experience at MSPP! Here are some pictures of the dinner:

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Wrapping Up The Year With Some Big Changes!

Posted on May 11,2011 by sburnsmspp

I feel as though these past two weeks have been a whirlwind of changes, and it has both exhausted and excited me! In terms of school, I have just one day of classes left before graduation. My professor even offered to take us all out for pizza during lunch (those kinds of things don’t happen at a larger institution) and our program director organized a class dinner! My Capstone paper is due on Monday May 16th, so I’m in my final stages of editing and putting my reference page together. I finished my first draft over a month ago, and I submitted it to my professor in advance to get feedback, so now the changes I have to make are fairly small. The rest of my classmates presented their Capstone projects in class these past few weeks, and just two more get to share next week. I’ve enjoyed listening to my peers present because they chose topics very different than mine, so it has been both interesting and educational to learn about different issues, diagnoses, populations, and therapies.

In terms of my internship, I’ve been feeling stressed about terminating with my clients and ending our working relationships. I only have one week left at my site, so I’ve begun the termination process, however I am expecting that some clients are still struggling with the idea that I’m leaving. We spent one whole class in my Internship Seminar discussing termination and processing what it feels like to both terminate with our clients and with our classmates who will all be graduating. I had a fun idea to organize a peer supervision group after graduation for anyone in my class who wants to get together monthly to help with challenging clients—plus, it’s a great way to keep in touch!

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Tagged Counseling Psychology

Job Search

Posted on April 25,2011 by sburnsmspp

I have 3 weeks of classes left until I graduate with my M.A. in Mental Health Counseling! Now that my Capstone is out of the way, I can focus all of my attention on securing a job. Luckily, I have been asked on interviews and I have an offer lined up with my current internship site. I am grateful that so many of my professors have been available to me so that I can weigh the pros and cons of different positions with them. I was also able to meet individually with MSPP’s Director of Career Services, Tricia Krzywicki, and she also spoke to my Internship Seminar today about finding a job.

In case you’re wondering what types of jobs you can obtain before you are officially licensed as an LMHC (after you graduate with your M.A., you have to work for approximately 2 years under supervision before becoming eligible for licensure in Massachusetts), here is a list of agencies that were represented at a recent job fair I attended, which was sponsored by the Massachusetts Mental Health Counselor’s Association:

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Tagged Counseling Psychology

Capstone Presentation

Posted on April 12,2011 by sburnsmspp

I am feeling so extraordinarily relieved right now! I had my Capstone presentation yesterday in front of my class and the director of the M.A. Counseling program and it went better than I could have imaged!!!

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Tagged Counseling Psychology

April Showers Bring May Flowers

Posted on April 04,2011 by sburnsmspp

Today is raining. I drove home from my morning classes in a thunderstorm and it is only in the low 40s, so my house is chilly. Last week’s snow has washed away and my mood basically matches the weather. I want to take a nap, but I need to power through the rest of my afternoon and be productive. In just one short week I will be presenting my Capstone project! Although I’ve given my presentation a lot of thought, I have not created my PowerPoint and even though I have a full week, I feel as though I am procrastinating. I still need to attend my internship 3 days this week and I’m babysitting on Saturday, so realistically I do not have ample free time.

Amazingly, I have written a full rough draft of my Capstone paper—a whopping 75 pages without my references, which means I need to edit down. I feel EXTREMELY relieved that I have the bulk of this project completed, and I will feel even that much better once my presentation is out of the way next Monday! I heard that some of the professors who do not teach classes during my Capstone course attend different students’ presentations, so I definitely want to be prepared in case I have any visitors. The thought of spectators makes me nervous, but I suppose it will give me that extra nudge that I need at the end of my second year to do a stellar job!

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Why MSPP? Accepting Your Acceptance Letter!

Posted on March 25,2011 by sburnsmspp

Some of you may be deciding which school to attend after receiving multiple acceptance letters in the past few weeks! Personally, I chose MSPP because of the small community atmosphere, the individualized attention from professors, the field placement opportunities, and being able to take Continuing Education classes for free during my studies.

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Tagged Counseling Psychology, Applying to MSPP

Getting Involved at MSPP

Posted on March 15,2011 by sburnsmspp

As an MSPP student, you will have opportunities to get involved with many extracurricular activities. I’ve blogged before about social gatherings, volunteering at interview days, community service, attending Continuing Education programs, Student Coordinating Committee meetings, and participating in the Lucero Run, but there is still so much more! Here are some little blurbs about other activities that go on during the school year:

-ŸA luncheon for family members, loved ones, friends, veterans, or those currently serving in the military

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Tagged Social Responsibility, Counseling Psychology

A Day in the Life of an M.A. Counseling Student

Posted on March 09,2011 by sburnsmspp

This week I am going to blog briefly about what I’ve been up to in my classes because, as a prospective student, it may be helpful to have a sneak peek into the day in the life of an MSPP M.A. Counseling student!

This semester I am only taking two courses because I took an extra elective during the very hectic required summer courses. Right now in my Internship Seminar, students are doing case presentations on clients from their internship sites (keeping confidentially, of course). It’s very interesting to learn about other clients my classmates are treating because many of the sites have work with a specific population (i.e., substance abuse, teens, eating disorders, etc.) so they may have a type of client with which I have yet to work. During the presentation, we have to discuss our theoretical formulation, so it is helpful to hear what approach students chose, and then talk about what other types of therapy/perspectives may be helpful. At the end, we are required to discuss our growth as a counselor from working with these clients, so it is always nice to hear how much more confident students feel after being challenged by a new client.

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Tagged Counseling Psychology

An MSPP Filled Weekend!

Posted on March 03,2011 by sburnsmspp

This past weekend I was involved with MSPP academically, voluntarily, and socially! On Saturday I attended a very successful Interview Day. I was a student interviewer who helped to lead the group interview round, as well as five individual interviews. I was very impressed with the quality of applicants and their ability to answer difficult questions on the spot. Many of the interviewees had done ample amounts of volunteer work and some had challenging internship experiences that may help them during their first year at Practicum. The next Interview Day is March 12th. Check out my previous blog for some advice about what to expect on the big day (sadly, I will not be able to volunteer again)!

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Tagged Counseling Psychology, Applying to MSPP

Interview Day!

Posted on February 22,2011 by sburnsmspp

This weekend I am volunteering at MSPP for interview day! Along with a professor, I’ll be conducting interviews with M.A. Counseling applicants. If you’re one of the lucky folks attending interview day this Saturday, February 26th, how prepared are you? Here’s some information that will hopefully slow your heart rate and let you know what to expect:

1) Arrive at 8AM for breakfast (there’s usually a combination of things like bagels, Danishes, fruit, juice, coffee, etc). For a half hour you can eat and mingle with other applicants and current student chatters, who are there to help answer any questions.

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Tagged Counseling Psychology, Applying to MSPP