Alumni Spotlight: Counseling alumna Katie Pritchett M.S. ’20
After Katie Pritchett M.S. ’20 got her counseling degree from Texas Wesleyan, she didn’t want to lose the connections and relationships she had built during her time in the counseling program. That’s why she and fellow counseling alumna Amanda Averbeck M.S. ’19 started a counseling alumni network.
Hear more about Katie’s experiences in the counseling program at TXWES, and what inspires her about her profession.
Tell us about your experience in the TXWES counseling program.
I had a wonderful time while I was in the TXWES counseling program. Everything from the interview process, to the classroom instruction and friends I made was a wonderful experience. I think the best part of my time there was having access to the counseling center. Texas Wesleyan has a beautiful facility, supervisors and colleagues there any time you need assistance, so many different tools to use alongside the counseling process and a chance to “work” in a counseling setting on site.
Who was a favorite professor?
I loved all of my professors at Texas Wesleyan, but Dr. Bishop really had an impact on me while I was in the program. I was the only person in my cohort that was pursuing a Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Model, and Dr. Bishop was always right there to help me work through cases when I got stuck. He invited interesting and helpful speakers to class, always had a lot of interesting stories to share with the class, and genuinely cared about us being successful clinicians. I learned so much from Dr. Bishop.
Why did you want to become a counselor?
I wanted to become a counselor because I saw it as an opportunity to sit with people during some of their hardest times and help them sort through their stuff. It is an honor to work with individuals every day that are learning, growing, and recognizing the strengths within. I get to go to work every day with the goal in mind that I will be “fired” because my client has gained all the tools in their toolbox that they need to move forward in their life healthier than when they came in.
Why did you start the TXWES counseling alumni group?
We are all connected — past, present and future students — because we all have Texas Wesleyan Counseling in common. When I was a student, I would have loved to have had a forum to talk with students further along in the program or alumni. As a new student, talking to seasoned graduate students or clinicians can be a little intimidating. Having a voluntary group where we have common ground makes things more welcoming. I want everyone to feel welcome, seen and supported.
Why is it important to be a part of a counseling group, like our alumni group?
The alumni group provides support, resources, and a wonderful opportunity for networking. You can learn about upcoming CEUS, hear about job openings, discover resources others are using in practice, have your questions answered and so much more. You also have the opportunity to help others in areas that you have experience with.
What’s your favorite thing about your job?
I love seeing people improving and reaching their goals week to week. Sometimes, when people first come to see you, they are so defeated. There are many incredible moments along the way, and witnessing the change from slumped shoulders and sadness to walking in purpose and confidence is an overwhelming feeling. And that doesn’t even have to do with me as a counselor. It has to do with this amazing individual sitting in front of me, doing the work in and outside of therapy, and changing their life. I just get to foster a safe, secure place for that to happen.