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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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NMSU's Department of Counseling and Educational Psychology wins $930,000 grant

The Ph.D. program in counseling psychology at New Mexico State University was recently awarded a $930,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The money will fund scholarships for students in the program.

"The NMSU Ph.D. program in counseling psychology was funded for this grant because we are providing cutting-edge training in primary care psychology," said Eve Adams, associate professor of counseling and educational psychology and director of training for the counseling psychology doctoral program.

The grant is funded through the Health Resources and Services Administration's (HRSA) Scholarships for Disadvantaged Students (SDS) program to increase diversity in health professions by providing grants to eligible programs for use in awarding scholarships to financially needy students from disadvantaged backgrounds.

This funding will provide 19 NMSU doctoral students in counseling psychology a yearly scholarship of $15,000 for four years, totaling $285,000 per year.

Initially more focused on traditional health care professions, such as nursing and medicine, the SDS program recently expanded their eligibility requirements to include behavioral health disciplines working in primary care settings.

"I wrote the grant with the assistance of Dr. Sandy Newsome. Dr. Newsome coordinates the admissions for the doctoral program and we both knew how important this grant would be in recruiting Ph.D. students to NMSU," Adams said.

The SDS grant addresses a major barrier to disadvantaged students' access to health professions education ? specifically, high tuition costs. The program gives funding priority to health professions with certain percentages of full-time underrepresented minorities, graduates practicing in primary care and graduates working in medically underserved communities.

The department was also awarded another HRSA grant through the Graduate Psychology Education Program, in 2004. This program prepares students to provide multicultural and multidisciplinary health care to residents living in medically underserved communities.

"Dr. Jared Cox, who is funded by our Graduate Psychology Education grant, is teaching and supervising our doctoral students to provide much needed behavioral health care to the medically underserved in Dona Ana County," Adams said.