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Department of Special Education and Rehabilitation Counseling Honors Graduates from Florida

A recognition ceremony was held recently in Melbourne, Fla., to honor six graduates of the Web-based master’s degree in Rehabilitation Counseling Program. Department of Special Education and Rehabilitation Counseling faculty members Ralph Crystal and Sonja Feist-Price took part in the celebration as the six rehabilitation counselors with the Florida Division of Vocational Rehabilitation received their master’s degrees from UK.

“It was a wonderful event, something these students and professionals have worked hard to earn,” Crystal said. “It was quite a pleasure to meet these counselors in person and share in their success.”

Over 40 family members and friends attended the ceremony, and Crystal and Feist-Price spoke to those in attendance about the importance of education and the leadership roles these new graduates now hold.

“It is always great to see new graduates of the programs here in the College of Education,” said Interim Dean Rosetta Sandidge. “It is especially gratifying to see these professionals who already are devoting much of their time to their careers in rehabilitation counseling working to enhance their education and skills by earning their master’s degree through our Web-based program.”

Thanks in part to the generosity and support of UK College of Education benefactor Helen Hill, Crystal and the Rehabilitation Counseling Program have developed one of the nation’s solely Web-based master’s programs in rehabilitation counseling and one of the few fully online Web master’s degree programs at UK.

The distance education program, which was started in 1996, serves master’s degree candidates from all over the country and was started in response to a federal mandate that rehabilitation counselors employed by state agencies hold a master’s degree. The Web-based program was implemented in January 2004, and to date more than 200 students from 25 states have graduated from this program.