New programs become available at Aquinas College

Story by Tom Doetsch, The Saint Reporter
Photo courtesy of Brian Kelly

Aquinas has recently developed a couple new academic programs, from both undergraduate degrees and graduate programs. Among the new degrees are: Master of Art in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and English with Writing Emphasis.

The MA in Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program was created with an expectation that new jobs within the field would rapidly expand during the upcoming years. Dr.Daniel Cruikshanks, the Chair of the Psychology Department, established this program at Aquinas College.

Cruikshanks said, “Our program is different from others in this area. It is based on an intensive, hands-on approach to learning.  Students will receive high-quality instruction in brain-based, best practice models of mental health counseling.”

With every student that enters the program,  Aquinas will churn out professional counselors who will undoubtedly have a big impact on the world around them.  Cruikshanks said the first cohort of about twenty-five students would begin the program Fall of 2016.

Hopping over to the literary world, the English major has been revamped. The new program gives students an option to have an emphasis in writing.

Professor of English, Dr. Brent Chesley said, “…Aquinas added the new major, English with Writing Emphasis, because students want such a major.  I hope the [future] English major includes writing courses in young adult literature and children’s literature.”

It is beneficial that Aquinas is expanding this major because English is more than just Shakespeare and other canonical writers. Aquinas students want a chance to explore this field and not just stay within the confines of what’s been taught for centuries.

Junior Octavian Condet said, “I feel that they’ve added to the craft of the English major with the addition of the writing emphasis. I do think they’ll continue to improve each major to some degree to benefit the students.”

With the emergence of the recent Clinical in Mental Health Counseling graduate program and the gained benefits of the English major with the addition of the writing emphasis, Aquinas may become the home to other new majors  in the future.

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