Keep Dr. Pollard-Kosidowski on the Indiana University of Pennsylvania Counseling Faculty

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Without the brilliance, guidance, patience, and genuine care and support that Dr. Brittany Pollard-Kosidowski has given me, I would not be anywhere near where I am today. Over a year before I joined the program, she spoke with me on the phone several times to give me information about the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program at IUP and helped me make the right decisions. As my advisor, she has held my hand through many a crisis, whether academic or personal, and has never once expressed a hint of judgment (though lord knows I've probably given her reason to). She has empowered me to take part in activism for issues that I care about, pushed me to do more and better, and has never let my motherhood and pregnancy become a barrier to my goals. Truthfully, she has at times been the only thing keeping me from running scared from the program because she believes in what I can do, helps me believe it too, and gives me the tools to get there.

I am a better developing counselor because of this woman's excellence, and Indiana University of Pennsylvania wants to get rid of her due to retrenchment (aka some bullshit cuts to faculty). This is an incredibly misguided attempt at financial sustainability that the university insists supports their "move towards a STEM focus," which is a slap in the face to all of their non-STEM students.

There are also several other lower-level counseling faculty members who will be affected by these cuts -- ones that we cannot afford to lose! Our counseling department is like a family and we do not take these losses lightly. We need the strengths, insights, and experience that each and every one of them bring to the table. 

I am calling IUP to focus on being student-centered first and their bottom line second -- but either way, focusing on students will save their bottom line anyway. Keeping Dr. PK on the faculty is an invaluable investment in the counseling program and its students. As much as I love and respect all of the other members of the IUP counseling staff, without Dr. PK, I will definitely be seeking other schools for my doctorate.