Whether you are looking to go on to graduate work or immediately to the workplace, a counseling degree will help you analyze what causes growth and what causes problems and will promote guidance on how to improve your relationships—all from a biblical vantage-point.
The Counseling major focuses on counseling through a biblical set of “glasses” in order to help you see what God intended for proper function, what goes wrong, and how to help people get back to God’s design. Grace College is one of the very few schools, Christian or secular, to offer an undergraduate degree in counseling. This major is designed to prepare students for graduate work in both counseling and clinical psychology.
Examples of courses in this major:
An introduction to the major theories in counseling including secular and Christian approaches. The methodology of each approach will be analyzed based upon the respective theory of psychopathology. Special attention will be given to various skills, techniques and applications of these approaches.
An introductory study of the principles and techniques of investigation and data collection in the social sciences. The course will deal with techniques of organizing, conducting, analyzing and presenting such data.
This course will examine the relationship between the fields of psychology and theology. A theory of integration will be presented, along with discussions concerning specific psychological topics (i.e., self-esteem, anxiety, etc.) from a biblical vantage point.
An introduction to the major theories of personality and how it develops, including psychoanalysis, humanistic, existential and behavioristic approaches.
This course develops a theoretical base for evaluating human problems within a biblical framework. Once this has been accomplished, practical techniques will be discussed to help counselors structure the counseling session and implement change.
The individuals who will challenge you to learn:
B.A. in Psychology, Grace College; M.A. in Biblical Counseling, Grace College; M.Div., Grace Theological Seminary; Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, Ball State University
Thomas Edgington joined the Grace College faculty in 1992. He is a licensed psychologist and mental health counselor, who has practiced in community health centers, church counseling centers and private practice. He is involved in ongoing research and has interests in marriage counseling and counseling depression and anxiety.
B.S. in Psychology, Grace College; M.A. in Counseling, Colorado Christian; Psy.D. in Counseling Psychology, Adler School of Psychology.
Joe Graham began teaching in the Behavioral Science Department in 2011. He brings a wealth of experience as a counselor, including work in group homes, community mental health centers and a church counseling center. As a licensed psychologist, Graham specializes in adolescents and marital therapy and has eight years of teaching experience.
B.S. in Criminal Justice and Psychology, Grace College; M.A. in Counseling, Grace College; Psy.D., Adler School of Professional Psychology
Kevin Roberts' special interests include integrated healthcare practices and behavioral medicine and addiction treatment. In addition, he is working with the Kosciusko County Health Department on a two–year research grant from the K21 Foundation to study behavioral health intervention in the treatment of diabetes. The basic hypothesis driving the research purports that it is possible to improve the long-term health outcomes of individuals diagnosed with Type II Diabetes by adding a psychological component to their treatment. His research is driving toward improved patient outcomes and health care efficiency through integrated care practices.
B.A. in Psychology, Grace College; M.A. in Counseling and Personnel, Western Michigan University
Cindy Sisson joined Grace in 2002, and is currently the V.P. of Enrollment Management. She also teaches in the college's School of Behavioral Science and School of Adult and Community Education. She and her husband have three children, and they attend Warsaw Community Church.
B.M., William Tyndale College; M.A. in Counseling, Eastern Michigan University; Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration and Educational Leadership, Western Michigan University
Jim Swanson, vice president for Academic and Student Services, joined the Grace College faculty in 1995. In addition to his role in student life, he is an instructor in the GOAL Program and for the School of Behavioral Sciences. He has professional counseling licenses in Michigan and Indiana. His special interests include marriage and family, addictions, statistics and crisis intervention.
B.A. in Psychology, University of Michigan; M.S. in Clinical Psychology, Baylor University; Psy.D. Baylor University
Lisa Wooley joins the Grace faculty as assistant professor of behavioral science. She received her master's degree and doctorate in clinical psychology from Baylor University and is a licensed psychologist in Indiana. She has worked for the Bowen Center for the past 15 years and has training in parent interactional training, with specialization in play therapy, child and adolescent therapy, trauma, sexual abuse, anxiety, attachment disorders and ADHD. Her theoretical orientation is on object relations, and her primary research interests include play therapy, attachment issues and trauma.
Some of the positions you can obtain:
Treatment and care of the emotional, psychological and spiritual well-being of young adults within a college or university setting.
In either a small group setting or with clients individually, you will help people deal with their problems, whether they be personal, social, vocational, physical, educational or spiritual in manner.
Working under the direction of a social worker or psychologist, human services assistants help clients obtain benefits or services, monitor case records of clients, and report progress of the clients to the supervisor.
Manage client inquiries by gathering information and responding to questions. Work to research and resolve problems in a timely manner. Assist members in understanding and maximizing the benefits and use of their program.
Provide support to ensure that both the psychiatric and physical care needs of patients are met. Promote and maintain a healthy, safe and therapeutic treatment setting that allows the recovery process to occur within the individual. This may involve evaluating or intervening and providing therapeutic, one-on-one interaction with patients.
Be responsible for creating a safe, supportive, therapeutic environment for at-risk young people through positive role modeling, implementing behavioral management techniques and teaching relational boundaries.
Lead an art program within the healthcare community to fulfill the physical and psychological needs of clients and promote their well-being. Instructs individuals and groups in use of various art materials, such as paint and clay, assessing their progress and recovery.
Evaluate, counsel and advise individuals and groups with special behavioral needs. Psychologist are also trained to conduct research and teach.
Provide individual, marital and family counseling services to adults and children to assist clients in identifying and working through personal and interactive problems.
Typically as a member of the pastoral staff, provide counseling services within a church setting that integrates biblical values in the restoration process with clients.
Coordinate the orientation and registration of students during the middle school and/or high school years. Assist students in thinking about and planning for their near future, whether that be work or college.
Addictions counselors help patients who have problems with addiction. In its classical definition, addictions counselors work with people who have problems with alcohol or drugs. Many now accept an expanded definition of addiction, and addictions counselors often treat people with gambling problems and eating disorders as well as alcohol, and legal and illegal drugs. Addictions counselors assist patients through one-on-one, group and family therapy and, when needed, make referrals to psychiatrists, psychologist and doctors.
Providing wellness coaching, education, support and referrals to various health and wellness programs. Use techniques such as motivational interviewing, behavior change, and cognitive behavioral therapy techniques to help people achieve optimal health and well being.
School psychology is an excellent field for those who want to work with youth and feel a drive to make a positive difference in lives. It is a great field for those who want to work in education, but do not necessarily want to teach a classroom of students. School psychologists are qualified to provide a broad range of skills to address student needs in a variety of areas. The school psychologist will work with students, parents and teachers to promote academic, emotional and behavioral success. Their skills enable them to offer comprehensive psychological evaluations, as well as consult with school personnel in relation to students’ learning, behavior and environments. They provide individual, group and organizational interventions, including counseling.
What others are saying:
I am so grateful for my experience in Grace’s undergrad counseling program. Courses examine psychology in light of God’s Word about man and his condition with the ultimate goal of helping people. Students gain a firm foundation of Scripture and the ability to apply these truths to a broken world. Professors draw from years of experience, which adds depth of understanding to each classroom discussion. I was personally challenged and grew not only in my thinking, but also in my faith and relational world as well. I feel Grace’s counseling program equipped me with the skills and knowledge needed to function comfortably in the helping profession.
- Erin Slater, B.S., Counseling
I am a recent graduate of Grace, and looking back on my years at Grace makes me realize how blessed I am to have gone there. Grace has impacted my life in many ways, but it is the professors who made the greatest impact. The professors went above their job requirements to invest in my life. They encouraged me when I needed it most, they pushed me to achieve my goals, and they prepared me for life out of college. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am or who I am.
- Cassie Patterson, B.S., Counseling and Criminal Justice