Staff sheds light on anti-bullying work at conf.
Three UW-Parkside staff members attended the sixth national conference of the American College Counseling Association (ACCA). The three-day conference, appropriately titled "A Whole New World," was held in Orlando at the Disney Contemporary Resort.
The conference brings college counselors from around the nation together to share experiences, network, and attend workshops. Through this, guiding principles and standards for student services are revealed.
The three staff members attending were Marcy Hufendick, program manager and senior student health counselor; Vicki Wahler, student health counselor, and Ana Guerriero, LGBTQ Resource Center Director.
Their presentation, entitled "From the Shadows to the Light: How Collaboration Makes Our Rainbow Shine," highlighted the phenomenal work happening at UW-Parkside between the Student Health and Counseling Center and the LGBTQ Resource Center. The use of student testimonials added a powerful and personal touch to the presentation.
While Hufendick and Wahler have attended this annual conference for the past several years, this was the first visit for Guerriero.
"It was a fantastic experience," she exclaimed. "It was absolutely successful."
Guerriero felt the desire to attend this event due to her passionate dedication to anti-bullying, especially in the LGBTQ community.
"It's an epidemic across the nation, especially in high school and college," Guerriero stated. "The suicide rates for young LGBTQ people are astronomical"
Guerriero highlighted the importance of collaboration between the LGBTQ Resource Center and the Counseling Center, saying "It makes students more successful. The more support they feel, the higher their retention."
In order for this to happen, she explained, there must be an increase in support between different departments through the use of different mediums.
Guerriero hopes to adjust the presentation for future conferences so UW-Parkside can continue as a role-model for other colleges.
"What we do at Parkside is exemplary," she says proudly, "our students feel safe."The staff received funding from both the Academic Staff Professional Development Fund and the Faculty and Academic Staff Professional Opportunity Fund. Guerriero thanked the committees for allowing them the opportunity to guide students into a whole new world.