On Friday, May 29, the Department of Professional Counseling’s Counseling Alumni Connection (CAC) co-founders Matthew Tirrell ’13M, Jennifer Trimarchi ’10 ’14M, and Erica Lapid ’12M, along with their advisor Lisa Himelman ’13M, director of professional development and special projects in the Department of Professional Counseling, and graduate assistant Jeffrey Singh ’16, presented at the New Jersey Counseling Association (NJCA) Virtual Spring Conference.
Their presentation, titled “Connection: The Benefit of Alumni Engagement in Graduate Programs” highlighted the creation and implementation of the CAC, a well-established and active alumni organization, as well as their successful programs and initiatives. This was the first time this presentation was given at a statewide conference.
Attendees learned about how the initial idea of the CAC came to fruition, including an overview of the administrative facilitation, and how it has positively impacted professional counseling alumni, current students, the university community, and other professionals in helping disciplines.
“The motivation of this organization has always been the counseling tenet of altruism, with the primary goal of giving back to people within and outside of Monmouth University,” Himelman said.
The presenters shared this mission with other educators and clinicians, which is what brought them to participate in the NJCA conference. They also provided suggestions and resources for how this model could be adopted at other universities.
According to Himelman, the presentation was well received with a great turnout and feedback. “We are grateful to NJCA for giving us this opportunity, and to the department for their constant support and encouragement of the CAC. We hope to continue showcasing this important work at future conferences not just in New Jersey, but also nationally,” Himelman added.
About the presenters:
- Tirrell is a licensed professional counselor, director of field placement in the Department of Professional Counseling, and adjunct professor at Monmouth University.
- Himelman is the director of professional development and special projects in the Department of Professional Counseling.
- Trimarchi is a licensed professional counselor, owner of Awareness Within, LLC, and adjunct professor at Monmouth University.
- Lapid is a licensed professional counselor, owner of Way to Wellness, LLC, and an adjunct professor at Atlantic Cape Community College.
- Singh is a current student in the clinical mental health counseling master’s program and graduate assistant in the Department of Professional Counseling.
Questions about the CAC or how to get involved can be directed to Lisa Himelman at firstname.lastname@example.org.