Our final alumni highlight series will comprise of professionals on the career track of psychology & creativity, as well as some bonus highlights including alumni working as medical, education, research, or clinical and counseling professionals! Our bonus features intend to remind readers of a few of the many career tracks that we have shared throughout the series. As always, Roanoke students are encouraged to reach out for career advice. The Psychology Department is a great place to start — talk to your academic advisor, your course instructors, etc.! PLACE office also offers a range of resources, including career counseling, resume and cover letter assistance, job search strategies, and networking opportunities. In conjunction with PLACE, the Alumni Relations office can connect students with alumni mentors in their field of interest. Whether you’re exploring your options or preparing for your next steps after graduation, the Roanoke College community is here to support you on your journey. Check out some of the resources available to you on Roanoke’s “Preparing for Life After Graduation” webpage!

Let’s now delve into the journeys of some professionals in the psychology field as we introduce our featured alumni for this week!

How would Kinsey describe her role as a Resident in Counseling? 

“I am a Resident in counseling which means I am working with clients every day to meet the direct hour requirements to become a licensed professional Counselor. I utilize Play Therapy to help children build self-confidence, understand their emotions, and resolve inner conflicts. I counsel all ages from 3 years old to 80 years old but my main focus is children.”

How did Carly become a Kids Like Us Counselor? 

“I got my Master of Arts in Art Therapy from The George Washington University in 2023. While I was there, I interned as an art therapist with a residential substance abuse rehabilitation center in DC, Washington DC Public Schools, the GW Art Therapy Clinic, and worked for GW as an Academic Coach. All of these provided such valuable opportunities for me to work with clients, learn how to use art for healing, process traumatic and stressful experiences with clients, and provide ethical and competent services. Working with folks in recovery also provided me with a deeper compassion for the youth that I serve and the ones in their lives that they worry about. All of these surely nurtured my passion for the work as well. In order to get my job, I talked to as many art therapists and counselors as I could find to get advice and wisdom related to their job searching. My networking really helped, and landed me an interview, a kind recommendation, and my current position. Since graduating, I have been working towards obtaining licensure for Counseling and Art Therapy in the DMV, as well as national certification for Art Therapy. All of this has been super helpful for me to find my way in the field.”

What has Victoria been working on most recently?

“I made great progress on a trilogy I’ve been working on for several years, the first two books of which can be found on Amazon under my pen name Victory Parsons – ‘The Forgotten Prince’ and ‘Forerunners.’ The final installment still needs a lot of work before it may be exposed to the public eye. The trilogy follows beings who can time travel and the tolls that such abilities can take on the mind, which basically means any major mental illness you can think of. Throughout the books, I play with other concepts like dreams, memory, consciousness, mortality, loss/grief, parenting and attachment styles, even drug abuse and some psychedelic ideas.”

What does Sophia appreciate most about her current position? 

“I’m a high risk Labor and Delivery nurse. I assist women during their labor and birth process… I love working with students and new nurses teaching and sharing the knowledge I have learned along the way. I have grown to appreciate working at a teaching hospital because of the collaboration with different members of the medical team (Residents, RTs, pharmacist) and using new products and research that enhance our patients’ experiences. I think birth is so fascinating and I don’t think I will ever stop being in awe of the human body! I also gave birth to my first child on the unit where I work so I have an all new appreciation for my coworkers!”

What are some of Ally’s roles and responsibilities at Colorado State University?

“I am a fully-integrated member of our department with an 80% teaching load, 15% research and 5% service (not adjunct). I teach undergraduate and graduate courses related to adult development and aging and lifespan development, and maintain a small research program as well. I typically teach about 4 classes per semester (Fall and Spring) and 1-2 in summer. My main courses include HDFS 201 Perspectives in Gerontology, HDFS 312 Adult Development and Aging, HDFS 412 Mental, Physical Health in Adulthood, and HDFS 434 Risk and Resilience Across the Lifespan, and HDFS 613 Adult Development and Aging (graduate level)… My research focuses on the connection between the subjective experiences of aging (e.g., age stereotypes and self-perceptions of aging) and how they affect health, mental health, and longevity… I also collaborate with community partners and CSU Extension professionals to conduct community-engaged research. For instance, I am working with Extension partners on the program evaluation of a farmers’ market-based program, in which we are also developing intergenerational learning opportunities to connect college students with older adults around fresh produce and healthy aging.”

How did Bree become a Senior Multifamily Researcher?

After earning her master’s degree from Nova Southeastern university in Program Development, she took a Child Life Exam during her clinical internship at Broward Health. She then worked as an Emergency Room Child Life Specialist at Inova Health System, and then at Bon Secours St Mary’s Hospital. She included, “I created a sensory friendly program at the hospital and started analyzing data from the sensory friendly program to make a difference in children’s healthcare experience and loved seeing results from that study so I then decided to  transition into higher paying research/analyst position at costar group / but still have the opportunity to make a difference in investor and stakeholder decisions on multimillion dollar transactions, so while it is not child development centered it still allows me to feel rewarded knowing I’m making a difference through research!”

What professional journey has Maya followed following her time at Roanoke College? 

“I attended Roanoke College and obtained an amazing background in psychology. I decided to attend graduate school to become a school counselor at Virginia Tech. I have become knowledgeable in group counseling, substance use, trauma-informed care, crisis intervention, expressive arts, multicultural competency, and more. I went to a job fair and was hired by Roanoke City as full-time school counselor in an elementary or middle school.”

From integrating Play and Art Therapies, to creative writing, these alumni showcase some of the many fulfilling careers that can await you following your psychology studies at Roanoke College.

We also asked our alumni to reflect on the Roanoke courses or experiences that have been most relevant to their current careers.

In terms of influential classes, alumni named PSYC-202 Research Methods, PSYC-204 Quantitative Methods, PSYC-221 Developmental Psychology, PSYC-321 Child Development, PSYC-344 Creative Thinking, PSYC-381 Abnormal Psychology, and PSYC-410 Research Seminar. Independent Fiction Author, Victoria Winnard included, “Basically I’ve incorporated a little bit of everything from the classes I took at Roanoke… Without a doubt my background in psychology has informed and deepened my writing.”

Kinsey Overflet and Maya Lamprinakos’ both shared experiences of volunteering and/or interning at the West End Center, and how that shaped their career goals and further prepared them for life after Roanoke. Maya’s volunteer work even led to an internship, and then her current job!

Additionally, Ally Brothers noted how she capitalized on experiential learning opportunities at Roanoke in saying, “Participating in Summer Scholars one year through the Honors Program and Psych department allowed me to do a deep independent study and customize my learning with close mentorship.” In reflecting on her internship, Ally added, “Dr. Jan Lynch served as the internship supervisor, and I remember that I did an internship with a brain injury rehabilitation center (such good experience). Dr Lynch and her husband invited all 15+ of us interns to their home and made us the best spaghetti with meat sauce, which we ate while gathering in their living room to discuss our internship experiences – we shared challenges, insights, and lots of laughter. The way she cared for and supported students was just remarkable!” 

We understand that choosing a career path can be hard, and you will likely even change your mind somewhere along your journey! Internships are a great way to immerse yourself in a field of interest to you and discern what you truly want your future career to entail. Sophia Bolton Jennings best highlighted this in saying, “I hadn’t considered nursing as a profession until the end of my Junior year at Roanoke. I was completing an internship at a local drug rehab facility where I found myself more drawn to the nurses workflow than that of the therapist I was working with. Upon this realization I went to my advisor, Dr. Powell, and she worked with me to get my pre-reqs in order (this included a summer at Roanoke doing the anatomy and physiology intensive course – which I loved!). The following fall I completed the application process. Even though I made the decision to go to nursing school later in my undergraduate career, the process of preparing for and applying to schools was made simple by the easy access to my advisors, something Roanoke prides itself on.”

Carly Schepacarter, MA, ATR-P, LGPC shared the immensely positive impact of undergraduate research on her professional journey. She wrote, “I cannot oversell the value of my research experience with Dr. Carter, my Honors in the Major project, and the extensive classroom instruction on research was to my success. It made research less scary and something that I feel confident in. This helped immensely in my graduate program to write my thesis and complete a research class, both of which were new and stressful tasks for the rest of my program. This has also helped in my job, where we are completing a 10-year longitudinal study and once again, my research knowledge and confidence has come in handy… It’s not something to be afraid of and knowing the ins and outs of a spreadsheet, literature review, and research study is one of my most valued assets.”

Before closing out our final week of alumni highlights, we want to extend our sincerest gratitude to all of our wonderful alumni who have shared reflections on their time at Roanoke College, as well as details about their professional roles! Their stories serve as a true testament to the breadth of opportunities available after studying psychology at Roanoke College. We also want to thank you, our readers, for joining us on this journey of discovery and inspiration!

As you consider your own path, remember that your experiences at Roanoke College can provide a strong foundation for whatever career you choose to pursue. Whether you’re interested in counseling, research, education, or any other field, the skills and knowledge you gain here can help you make a positive impact in the world. Don’t hesitate to reach out to your professors or advisors for guidance as you navigate your future career path.

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Alumni Highlight: Industrial-Organizational Professionals!

Welcome to this week’s Alumni Highlights. We’re back to featuring a single incredible track in psychology: Industrial-Organizational. There are several career fields in which psychology is blended with other disciplines and Industrial-Organizational is one of those fields. Specifically, the Industrial-Organizational field blends knowledge from the disciplines of psychology and business! 

How did Jordan become a Human Resources Generalist?

Human resources was never really the position I thought I’d end up being in as a psychology major. I learned so much while earning my degree that I knew there were multiple paths that I could choose from. After receiving my degree from Roanoke, I went on to obtain my Master of Science degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Northern Kentucky University. I/O Psychology is about the study of the workplace and learning about employee performance, employee satisfaction, organizational development, training and development, and much more. I learned more about how statistics is used in a workplace setting and what types of workplace processes and policies can come from data obtained by my employees. While earning my degree, I realized that human resources was a position in which encompassed a lot of what I learned and was a gateway into being able to make more of a difference for employees in a workplace setting.”

What does Laura enjoy most about her role as a Senior Recruiter?

Helping candidates navigate our interview process and eventually being able to extend offers! Creating that positive experience and being a part of their journey is extremely rewarding. I love that we can offer these programs and knowing this opportunity can change someone’s life is everything.”

What is Kaitlin’s favorite part about being an Associate Consultant?

Every project is different, and I really like that it allows me to constantly learn something new every day! One day, I might score an employee assessment or interview to predict who will be a good hire for an organization. Another day, I might work on writing development reports that focus on employees’ strengths and development areas for rising leaders in an organization. Some days I might help with brainstorming and creating a selection system with a client to ensure employees are being hired fairly and accurately. These are just a few of the many things I’ve worked on, and I really enjoy the close-knit team setting that makes this work fun!”

What are some of Destinee’s duties as an Organization Development/Human Resources Coordinator?

I assist and support in the design, implementation, delivery, and ongoing maintenance of people programs that improve employee experience and organizational effectiveness in various areas such as employee engagement, performance management, leadership development, career development, HR initiatives, and culture.”

What responsibilities fall under Jessica’s role as a Personnel Psychologist? 

“Essentially I work with a lot of data and concepts related to the human element of work. A few example topic areas I may cover include understanding what skills are needed for a certain position, how to best evaluate if a training is effective, ensuring that selection systems are valid, analyzing exit survey data, and designing a data management system for personnel related data.  These are just a few examples, but essentially if you think about data Human resources might collect, it is likely that someone in my field would be involved in some way!”

From senior recruiter and Human Resources staff, to personnel psychologist, our alumni showcase some of the many opportunities within the field of industrial and organizational psychology. By sharing their experiences, these alumni hope to inspire the next generation of I-O psychology folks to explore and pursue their passions. 

We also asked our alumni to reflect on the Roanoke courses or experiences that have been most relevant to their current careers.

In terms of influential classes, alumni named PSYC-202 Research Methods in Psychology, PSYC-204 Quantitative Methods, PSYC-382 Industrial-Organizational Psychology, and PSYC-251 Social Psychology. 

Several alumni noted how instrumental the Roanoke College faculty mentors have been to their success. Many of them had never known about the field of Industrial and Organizational Psychology before they were exposed to it either in their coursework, or through individual professional development conversations with faculty. 

Alumni also highlighted specific research and internship experiences they had during their time at Roanoke that helped facilitate their successes after graduation. Kaitlin Busse mentioned both when saying, “[In] Dr. Powell’s research lab… I was able conduct research on an I-O Psychology topic area and present findings at the Society for Industrial Organizational Psychology conference” and “I interned in a variety of HR roles during my summers (e.g., talent management, learning and development) where I gained practical knowledge of what it’s like to do this work in a real-life setting.”

Laura Pope, MS, sums up the sentiment shared by many of our alumni: “Truly, all of my experiences within the department helped set me up for success. I learned those invaluable ‘softer skills’ needed for a successful career (i.e., time management, problem-solving, working with others, achieving goals, etc), not to mention great general advice from professors.” These words echo the impact that Roanoke College’s psychology department and faculty have had on our alumni, emphasizing the value of both academic and personal development. 

If this series hasn’t highlighted it enough yet, we highly encourage you to seek out professors who inspire you and be open to learn from our very own experts in the field!

As Alumni Weekend approaches in just over one week, we look forward to showcasing our final set of alumni stories in the coming days. Stay tuned for next week’s spotlight on more than one exciting career path!

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Alumni Highlights: Human Services, Medical, and Peace & Justice Professionals! 

Welcome to this week’s Alumni Highlights, where we will feature not one, but three incredible career tracks in psychology: Human Services, Medical, and Peace & Justice. Following your read of this post, please feel free to explore the Roanoke Psychology Department’s Instagram and Facebook accounts as well. You will notice that we offer a more individualized highlight of each of our alumni on those platforms weekly! 

Before jumping into our alumni’s stories for this week, we again want to thank our wonderful alumni who have generously shared reflections on their time at Roanoke College, as well as details about their professional roles today. Their stories serve as a testament to the breadth of opportunities available in the field, and the positive influence that Roanoke College can have on your future. If, as an alum, you would like to share your story for inclusion in a future post, please reach out to Dr. Powell (

Get ready to meet some outstanding alumni in Human Services, Medical, and Peace & Justice fields in this week’s spotlight!

What does Victoria do as a Utilization Management Specialist?

“It’s a mix of quality control and coordinating treatment plans for children in and out of the community. I review the treatment level of every foster child in a private foster care placement and assess if the treatment level is appropriate to their current level of need. Every level of treatment is a different daily cost rate, so part of the big picture of what I call quality control is ensuring public tax dollars are being used appropriately. CSA funds are public funds that are then reimbursed by the state at a varying percentage of a match rate. Additionally, I monitor the placement and treatment of every child placed in a residential treatment facility, whether they’re a child in foster care or a just child from our community where their parents still retain custody.”

How did Allison earn her role as an APS Family Services Specialist?

“Upon graduating from Roanoke College in December of 2021, I immediately began working as an Adult Mental Health Case Manager at Blue Ridge Behavioral Healthcare. This position helped me to foster important skills in the field including case management, rapport building, communication, and time management. This experience led to my current opportunity in APS.”

What is Stephanie’s favorite part of her work?

“My favorite part of my position is having the opportunity to work with kiddos and families. When we go into work with a family, often they are in serious need of support. It is immensely rewarding being able to make a difference in their lives by increasing their kiddo’s communication skills, social skills, and independence.”

How would Alex describe her position to others?

“The unit I work on is called the Polytrauma Rehabilitation Center/Comprehensive Rehabilitation Center (PRC/CRC) and is one of only 5 in the country. The PRC/CRC is a 18-24 bed acute inpatient rehabilitation unit for Veterans or Active Duty Service members who very recently sustained a brain injury (traumatic brain injury, stroke, brain tumors, anoxia/hypoxia, encephalitis, etc.) as well as some who are receiving rehabilitation for more orthopedic injuries. My role is to provide neuropsychological and psychological support. I work with my patients on assessing their cognition, tracking their cognitive recovery throughout their stay, and providing psychoeducation about recovery trajectory and expectations. Simultaneously I provide support for these patients as they adjust to their new circumstances and cope with what is often one of the most difficult life experiences so far for these individuals. I also work on an interdisciplinary team with occupational therapists, physical therapists, speech and language pathologists, vision rehabilitation therapists, recreation therapy, social work, nursing, and physician/physiatrist. I am also a clinical supervisor and supervise interns and post doctoral fellows.”

What did Sydney’s path of professional development consist of?

I shaped my professional career around my passion to encourage healthy and safe relationships. I placed being an advocate for those experiencing sexual and/or gender-based violence at the forefront of my career. During my time at Roanoke College, I served as a student liaison for the Roanoke Rescue Mission, a local homeless shelter, while also working remotely as a legal intern for a family law firm. Then I worked for an immigration attorney whose primary practice involved those obtaining U-Visas as individuals who experienced sexual violence crimes while in the United States. Which led me to attend Delaware Law School, Widener University serving as a domestic violence and child abuse advocate and obtain my Juris Doctor degree. My professional career focused on sexual and gender-based misconduct which ultimately led me to my current position where I get to encourage those relationships but also provide everyone the equal opportunity to access their education without sexual and/or gender-based misconduct.”

What does Patrick enjoy most about his job?

“My favorite part of the position is getting to conduct research in the field. Whether it be a clerk’s office, prison, or school – I like getting to speak with the people who are most impacted by my work… In my research I use Virtual Reality technology to better understand criminal behavior. Most recently, I spent six months traveling across prisons in the state of Pennsylvania, having individuals with a criminal history of burglary scout a virtual neighborhood for burglary targets. Through this project we better understand how burglars determine if a house is a good house to break into or not.”

What does Naomi do in her role as a Graduate Teaching Assistant?

In this position, I am helping instructors with grading assignments, providing feedback to students regarding their progress throughout the course. I enjoy the behind-the-scenes look at how many classes are structured and maintained throughout the semester.”

The diverse and inspiring stories of our alumni in the Human Services, Medical, and Peace & Justice fields highlight the vast opportunities available across the field of psychology. From earning master’s degrees to becoming specialists and neuropsychologists, our alumni are finding great success following their time at Roanoke! Their journeys underscore the transformative impact of a Roanoke College education and serve as a testament to the countless ways one can make a meaningful difference in the world through the field of psychology.

We also asked our alumni to share what Roanoke courses or experiences have served to be most relevant to their current career. 

In terms of classes, alumni named PSYC-231 Biological Psychology, PSYC-251 Social Psychology, PSYC-321 Child Development, PSYC-322 Adolescent Development, PSYC-327 Interpersonal Relationships, PSYC-332 Drugs & Behavior, PSYC-381 Abnormal Psychology, and even statistics courses! Patrick McClanahan, PhD also included “Dr. Buchholz’s Social Psychology was one of the most influential classes I took. It really ignited my passion for research and wanting to understand how society and the individual interact, leading to different behaviors. Dr. Buccholz was always more than happy to sit with me and hear my questions and ideas.” Additional alumni also noted how impactful their concentrations have been throughout their careers, specifically the Human Development and Neuroscience concentrations. Concentrations are a great way to integrate a more specific area of study into your educational background!

Other beneficial experiences that were said to make our alumni stand out in their graduate school applications and job interviews included research experiences, attending conferences, fellowships, and building relationships with their professors. Naomi H. Painter shared that her participation in a research fellowship program at Roanoke College enabled her to develop the skills, experience, and awareness that ultimately led her to her current role as a Graduate Teaching Assistant. Also, Sydney Quantock, J.D. expressed her gratitude for being able to build such wonderful connections with faculty in the department. She wrote, “I cannot thank Dr. Darcey Powell enough for her support and encouragement throughout my time at Roanoke College – your professors and advisors are amongst your biggest supporters, engage with them!” Professors and advisors can serve as wonderful role models and mentors. The Psychology faculty at Roanoke have a strong reputation for the high quality mentoring and advising they provide to help students achieve their career goals. Be sure to capitalize on their willingness to support you in your journey during and after Roanoke College!

We look forward to sharing more alumni stories from the additional tracks in the coming weeks before Alumni Weekend. We hope you enjoyed this exciting three-track edition, and be sure to stay tuned for next week’s spotlight on another exciting career track!

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