November 28, 2022

Department Spotlight: Emily Mellor

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Emily Mellor is a first year student in the USU School Counseling Education Program. After recognizing the power of social and emotional education in her own life, Emily decided to pursue a degree in school counseling to become an advocate and trusted support for the students in her community.

Why did you choose USU?
As a native Utahn, attending a Utah-based school was part of my plan in obtaining my Professional School Counseling degree. When looking at the various programs within the state, I felt that USU offered the best option for me because of the program’s long-standing success, the convenient extension site close by, and the affordable tuition. As I researched the career more extensively, nearly every school counselor I spoke to was a Utah State Alum and they all had wonderful things to say about the program. That was more than enough to make USU my top choice for graduate school. I am a proud Aggie!

Why did you decide to pursue a degree in school counselor education?
I have seen firsthand the power of social and emotional education in my life, and it has been the main contributing factor to my relational, career, and academic success. After seeing the immense positive impacts in my own life, I have a strong heartfelt desire to support and teach the children in my community the same things. I chose to pursue a degree in school counseling because I want to be an advocate and trusted support for students as they go through the emotional nuance of growing up and the rigors of academics.

What were your goals when you started the program? And how do those compare to your current aspirations?
My goal when I started the program was to survive, but it turns out that I have been able to thrive. The faculty and administrators of this program have offered great learning experiences with several areas of support. They have been transparent, collaborative, and accessible as I have gone through the program. I am certain that all of this will help me to become the kind of school counselor I want to be.

What is the most important thing you have learned in the school counselor education program?
The most important thing I have learned in the school counselor education program is to constantly evaluate and question my biases. I hope to always be teachable and willing to expand my understanding through others.

What advice do you have for other students in the school counselor education program, or for those considering applying?
I would recommend intentionally learning as much as you can. When I was researching to become a school counselor, I took the initiative to interview several different school counselors in my area to get a better understanding of the career. I have also sought a part-time job as a school counseling assistant to gain experience, better understand the students, and put my academic studies to work in the real world. These unique opportunities within my hometown have been rewarding as I have collaborated with the school counselors and become part of the educational community.

Who influenced you most during your time at USU?
The interactions with my cohort have been invaluable. The students in my cohort come from a variety of professional and personal backgrounds, I have learned so much from them and have built relationships with them that I look forward to having as a school counselor in the future.