Congratulations to Professor Laurie Dickstein-Fischer of the School of Education at Salem State who has been awarded a Marion and Jasper Whiting Fellowship Award for her project, “Bridging Student Success Through Collaborative Relationships with School Counselors in Spain.”
Dickstein-Fischer became interested in the idea of international school counseling in 2017 when she attended the International School Counseling Association (ISCA) Conference in Prague. As the program director for the Masters of Education in School Counseling at Salem State, she had noticed many students were beginning to look outside the US for opportunities in counseling.
Since the international market offers lots of growth and job opportunities for counselors, Dickstein-Fischer wanted to learn how to tailor the training offered at Salem State to work with an international population. She believes the initiative will “support the globalization of our field.” Dickstein-Fischer says that she wants to prepare students to go abroad if they choose to, and the question she had to ask herself was: are the skills being taught at Salem State transferable to other countries?
Through this project, Dickstein-Fischer will travel to Spain, visiting several International Schools in areas such as Valencia, Castilla La Mancha, Andalucia, and Catalunya. She is hoping to make the trip this fall during her sabbatical and spend a few weeks learning the role of an international counselor and enhancing her own cultural competence to help raise the cultural awareness of her students. Dickstein-Fischer plans to tour the different facilities in the region, meet with counselors, attend classes, and sit down with students to ask them about their experiences.
Dickstein-Fischer also hopes to use this trip to build a collaborative partnership with the schools that she visits. As part of the school counseling graduate program at Salem State, students are required to complete clinical hours, and Dickstein-Fischer would love to offer future Salem State students the opportunity to travel abroad at these international schools as part of their experiences.
Dickstein-Fischer says she is so thankful to the Marion and Jasper Whiting Foundation for the award and the opportunity, and so “grateful that awards like this exist to help professors improve their pedagogy.”
Congratulations, Professor Dickstein-Fischer!
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