Video sheds light on rehab counseling

By Jack Manning

Students are taking part in a program to spread awareness of rehabilitation counseling by creating a video to showcase the major.

The American Rehabilitation Counseling Association called on all rehab counseling programs to spread awareness of what rehabilitation counseling is. The campaign, called the Understand Rehabilitation Counseling Project, asks students to spread awareness through various mediums. The group from NIU is choosing to create a video to accomplish its goal.

“The goal is to create a very innovative way to spread awareness about it [rehab counseling], so we went right into the idea of a YouTube video,” said Sara Gibson, graduate rehabilitation counseling student. “The goal that they [the association] want is for this to reach at least 100 people, but we’re setting our goal to at least 500 people.”

The video the students are going to create will demonstrate the work rehabilitation counselors do and the support they provide.

Once the project is complete, the association’s board will review it and the group’s progress. Once a group reaches its goal, it is put into a drawing. Three groups will be randomly selected and reimbursed $1,000 to travel to Hawaii and attend an American Counseling Association conference to present their project.

“Hopefully it will give a bigger picture of what we do, who we support, that anybody that is perfectly physically able can become disabled at any point,” said Stephanie Van Autreve, graduate rehabilitation counseling student. “A lot of times when people do acquire a disability they don’t know where to turn, and our field is all about helping people that already have disabilities and people that acquire disabilities.”

Van Autreve said as a professional, her major is all about networking and being involved in professional organizations, so being involved with the association will help in her future career.

“I hope the video will help the field of rehabilitation counseling by getting the word out about our services, and in the end increasing the number of individuals that become our clients,” said Victoria Cancino, graduate rehabilitation counseling student.

Filming for the video will start in November, but exact dates aren’t finalized yet.