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Daigle receives national counseling award for vision, innovation

Michael Childs

September 2, 2014

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College of Education faculty member Jolie Daigle has received the 2014 Counseling Vision and Innovation Award from the Association for Counselor Education and Supervision (ACES). The award recognizes the work of a person who advances counseling practice in new and innovative ways, and advocates for transformed training.

Daigle, an associate professor and coordinator of the school counseling program in the Department of Counseling and Human Development Services, was recognized for her creative vision in transforming the service-learning requirements in the master's program in school counseling and her own service as a Professor-In-Residence at Rutland Academy.

Rutland Academy, one of 24 Georgia Network for Educational and Therapeutic Schools in the state, provides a therapeutic and educational environment that empowers K-12 students with emotional and/or behavioral disabilities to be academically, behaviorally, and socially successful. The school serves students from 13 surrounding school districts.

Daigle revised the program's curriculum to require all first-year master's degree students to be on-site to support Rutland Academy students. The change enhances the academic curriculum, engages graduate students meaningfully in the community, and contributes to school improvement and success.

"This gives our UGA students the opportunity to practice theory and skills with their coursework and engage in counseling interventions with Rutland Academy students," said Daigle.

The service-learning course is taught prior to their practicum and provides supportive experiences as all students work at the same site, with the same Rutland students. The students receive supervision on-site from Daigle prior to their more focused counseling practicum. This experience better prepares UGA students for the realities of the schools, the unpredictable nature of systems, the importance of building relationships, the challenge of managing student behavior, the integration of counseling theory into practice, and the significance of reflection, supervision, and consultation with faculty and peers.

Daigle was named a UGA Service-Learning Fellow for 2014-15. She joined the UGA faculty in 2005 after receiving her Ph.D. in counselor education and supervision from the University of New Orleans. The national award will be presented at the regional ACES conference in Birmingham, Ala., Oct. 9-12.