In February 2017, I received a life-changing phone call telling me I received a fellowship I’d applied for some months prior. I was numb. I was in shock. And I’m pretty sure I stopped breathing for about 10 seconds.
Further, in March 2017, a press release was sent out through various listservs, newspapers, and pages highlighting my newest accomplishment — I was named a National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) Minority Fellow.
I feel like I didn’t really believe it up until this point…. A “fellow”? Me? I’ve held many titles in life, but “fellow” has never been one of them…. Well then the University of Central Florida College of Education released an article as well! The excitement….
This fellowship was a huge deal for me. The overarching goal of the program is to aide counselors-in-training in serving minority transition-age (16-25) youth. I was already doing the work, so I felt affirmed and appreciated in being formally recognized for it on a national level, and supported from so many different angles in moving forward.
Just what was this program about, and what did I learn/accomplish?
The NBCC Fellowship Program has many different tracks/types. I was awarded the Master’s Mental Health Fellowship, which most accurately reflects my status as a master’s student (at the time) and career path.
As part of the MFP, I was required to attend an official symposium and awards ceremony to kick off my fellowship year.
At the Symposium, new Fellows were guided in developing a strategic plan for the fellowship year, which consisted of two specific goals and related objectives to build up to those goals. We were prompted to identify resources, trainings, and support we felt that we needed in order to accomplish the goals and objectives. We were able to request a mentor to help us through the fellowship year, and were granted access to all types of trainings, conferences, networks, and webinars aimed at pouring new knowledge and experiences into us. We also got these shiny plaques! (Ooohhh!)
All in all, I’ve had an amazing year of learning and growth! However, my fellowship year has come to an end. 😦
I am proud to report that I achieved each one of my objectives and goals that I set out for myself in May 2017 at my initial Symposium. With the help of my NBCC mentor, the resources, trainings, and networks provided by the NBCC, as well as financial support, I was given the opportunity to experience a growth and professional development like no other. The NBCC Minority Fellowship Program took my career to new heights and prepared me for my doctoral education that is to come. I will forever be grateful.
If you are a counseling student, dedicated to serving minorities in your practice, and are seeking an opportunity for growth and professional development, I strongly encourage visiting the NBCC Foundation website to learn more about the different programs and applications. Feel free to reach out to me if you have any specific questions!
2017 NBCC Fellow, out. ♥