Psychology majors support Mississippi Counseling Association in Jackson

Eight bright students from Alcorn State University’s Department of Education and Psychology experienced the process of getting a bill to swing in their favor.

The students, along with two psychology professors, traveled to Jackson, Miss. on Jan. 21 to attend the “Day at the Capitol” meeting, where they spoke with lawmakers about the issues that are important to the counseling and psychology profession. The topic of discussion was changing the current laws in reference to potential insurance providers, which would allow people in Mississippi to get more access to counselors.

The students learned how to properly advocate for their field as well as the process of lawmaking from members of congress. Assistant professor of psychology Dr. LaShawn Thompson believes that the students’ introduction to lawmaking will expose them to a skill set that can be learned outside of the classroom.

“Service learning activities, such as these, provide the students with an opportunity to be an active participant in their learning,” said Thompson. “It is imperative that education go beyond the classroom for a deeper understanding of the information being taught.”

The experience was an eye opener for senior psychology major Alyssa Brown. She left the capitol with newfound knowledge about how things work in the psychology profession.

“I learned that there is a strenuous process to getting a law passed,” said Brown. “I learned there is power in numbers and staying persistent will keep senators and representatives on watch for your concerns. The visit prepared me to advocate for psychology by keeping me aware of what goes on in the psychology and counseling arena.”

Junior psychology major Ari’Anna Magee has faith that the issues discussed will be resolved with hard work.

“I feel that the issues presented at the meeting will be fixed with much dedication,” said Magee. “It’s going to take me and other upcoming psychologists to carry on the dream by advocating for a change.”

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