Dr. Margaret Glenn of the WVU College of Education and Human Services and the clinical rehabilitation and mental health counseling program has received nearly $1 million from the U.S. Department of Education’s Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA).

The funding will go toward developing an online program of study to reach students in various states as well as in rural and underserviced areas of West Virginia. It will increase the number of qualified rehabilitation counselors working to help people with disabilities.

“Dr. Glenn’s work lies at the very core of West Virginia University’s Land-Grant Mission,” said CEHS Dean Gypsy Denzine. “We are thrilled with Dr. Glenn’s commitment to providing such a high quality professional preparation for future rehabilitation counselors who will work primarily in rural communities.”

In 1955, West Virginia University was one of the first universities in the United States to receive funding from the RSA. The initiative, officially called ‘RSA Long-Term Training for Rehabilitation Counseling,’ represents Glenn’s fourth successfully funded scholarship program.

Since joining the WVU College of Education and Human Services in 2001, Glenn has provided full scholarships to 78 certified rehabilitation counselors who are living their career dream of helping people with disabilities.

“As a consequence of Dr. Glenn’s outstanding commitment to providing access to higher education, thousands of people across the United States have benefited from the services and care they receive from a certified rehabilitation counselor,” said Denzine.

Initially conceived as a response to the specific needs of the federal and state vocational rehabilitation system, Glenn worked closely with state agencies in the development of curriculum and services to ensure that the initiative served the needs of both students and local rehabilitation programs. She is particularly enthusiastic about the opportunities this funding will provide for WVU’s future rehabilitation counselors and people with disabilities who live in underserviced areas.

The current RSA program will cover tuition and stipends for 18 full-time students to participate in the program and become vocational rehabilitation counselors. It will also provide funding for resources like academic support and counseling, internships in state vocational rehabilitation agencies or related agencies, career counseling and professional development, and communication strategies. In addition, the grant proposal lays out plans for curriculum development, student recruitment strategies, and avenues for program evaluation.

Though all coursework will be completed online through WVU eCampus, the program also aims to provide students with real-life experiences through partnerships with state vocational rehabilitation agencies and community-based rehabilitation programs. The proposal includes provisions for training internship supervisors in vocational rehabilitation agencies, to enhance the students’ learning experience while on the job.

Glenn began her career as a vocational rehabilitation counselor; she cites that experience as the most influential aspect of her career. She hopes the current funding provides students with the opportunity to set her students on a path to pursue their dreams, too—while effectively serving the needs of people with disabilities in the process.

“This project is a win for our program, for our students, and ultimately, for people with disabilities who deserve passionate, qualified assistance,” said Glenn.



CONTACT: Christie Zachary, Director of Marketing and Communication, College of Education and Human Services
Phone: 304-293-0224, Christie.Zachary@mail.wvu.edu

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