vice chancellor for University Relations, 308.865.8529; Glennis Nagel, director of Media Communications, 308.865.8454
University of Nebraska at Kearney student Catherine Hock, from Kearney, was recently named the national winner of the graduate student essay contest in the professions of counseling and psychology.
Dr. Julie Dinsmore, a professor in the Department of Counseling and School Psychology, said, “Needless to say, this is a great honor for her as an individual, but it also speaks well of the department and UNK as a whole.”
The winning essay was published in the flagship publication of the American Counseling Association (ACA). In her essay, Hock addressed the issues of defining who counselors are and the need for clarity about counselors’ roles, training and credentials. For her first place finish, Hock received a $500 prize and a one-year membership in ACA.
Dr. Dinsmore also said, “It is always nice to have UNK achieve national prominence through the talent and hard work of one of our students.”
Addressing what she wrote in her essay, Hock said, “The most important issues facing me in the next decade of my career happened to also be, in my opinion, the most important issues facing the profession as a whole.”
The ACA has sponsored the essay competition for graduate students for more than 10 years, and this year, nearly 130 students submitted essays. Students are asked to submit an essay of no more than 750 words. The essays are critiqued based on creative relevance, idea development and writing style.
Hock plans to graduate from UNK with a master’s in community counseling in December. At UNK, she is an active member of Chi Sigma Iota and the Nebraska Counseling Association. She has also been a presenter at the ACA Conference and Exposition for the last two years.