For the second straight year, a student in Seminary of the Southwest’s counseling program has been awarded the prestigious National Board for Certified Counselors Minority Fellowship Award for Master’s Mental Health Counselors. Senior Jane Obi was chosen to be a 2023 fellow, following in the footsteps of 2023 graduate Kevin Overton-Hadnot, who won the award in 2022.
“I am so honored to receive this amazing opportunity and receive the baton from 2023 graduate, Kevin Overton-Hadnot,” said Obi. “With this fellowship, I received $10,000 and 3 all expense paid conference trips to Atlanta, North Carolina, and Washington D.C. This fellowship allows me to learn from and be around amazing therapists of color and it is truly so inspiring.”
“In Jane receiving the NBCC Minority Fellowship, the world is being given the gift of having Jane’s voice, passion, and commitment to the counseling profession amplified in such a way that we will all be better for it,” said Dr. Maria Reyna, Assistant Professor of Counseling Education. “Her platform and access to professional mentorship has now grown and the counseling faculty are so grateful to have her among us.”
Dr. Reyna is the faculty sponsor of the nationally recognized chapter of Counselors for Social Justice that Obi and Overton-Hadnot helped found at Seminary of the Southwest. Obi currently serves as co-president of the chapter, as well as being a member of the Southwest student council, and the 2023-24 Student Representative to the Seminary of the Southwest Board of Trustees.
Unsurprisingly, given her impact in just a few years among the Southwest student community, Obi has her eyes set on what lay ahead. “With this fellowship, I am required to complete a project and my project is on Black Women and Rest,” said Obi. As an SIC scholar at Southwest, we are currently exploring the topic of Spirituality and Rest so there is a lot of crossover and that makes me really excited. I am so eager to work on this project with the support of my wonderful professors here at Southwest, especially my mentor, Dr. Awa Jangha. I look forward to (hopefully) passing on the baton to another Seminary of the Southwest counseling student next year. “