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School Psychology Doc Student Named Tops in Texas [12/02/2020]


Brandon Parker

Brandon Parker, doctoral student in School Psychology (Photo by Baylor Photography)

Brandon Parker, a third-year PhD student in School Psychology, was awarded the 2020 Texas Association of School Psychology (TASP) Outstanding Graduate Doctoral Student Award.

Parker was nominated by his current practicum supervisor, Lindsay Shockley, BA ’06 (psychology), EdS ’09 (School Psychology), a school psychologist for Lorena ISD, south of Waco. At Lorena ISD, Parker provides individual counseling services to students placed in special education.

“I help students work on increasing positive thoughts, feelings, and behaviors,” Parker said. “I help them with social skills and study skills, and I help them with emotional regulation and anger management.”

Parker noted that a crucial component of his work with students is the therapeutic relationship, explaining, “An additional facet of my meeting with these students is to be a trusted individual they can confide in and talk to in a school setting. I also conduct assessments to help determine student eligibility for special education placement and related services (such as counseling) they may need.”

The practicum experience is an integral part of the Baylor School Psychology graduate program, providing the student with the opportunity to begin supervised practice as a school psychologist. Third-year students in the program work in a full-time practicum that allows them to begin developing a clear professional identity and explore the responsibilities of a practicing school psychologist, while having solid supervisory and consultative support from an experienced field supervisor.

Dr. Julie Ivey, associate professor in the School Psychology program in the Department of Educational Psychology, said Parker is a hardworking, bright student. “Brandon is approachable and a team player,” she said. “He is loved by the students he serves at this practicum site, and he is very deserving of this award.”

The award was announced at a virtual TASP conference in October. According to TASP, winners of the award deserve recognition for providing exemplary school psychological services.

“When I received the email from TASP, I was both shocked and humbled,” Parker said. “I was filled with gratitude for the experiences I have had at Baylor and at Lorena ISD. I have been blessed with excellent professors and an excellent practicum supervisor, who have guided me and contributed to my growth. I think what was most impactful was learning of how my students responded to this award. To know that they feel I’ve made a positive impact in their lives is the most rewarding thing.”

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For more than 100 years, Baylor educators have carried the mission and practices of the School of Education to classrooms and beyond as teachers, leaders in K12 and higher education, psychologists, academics/scholars and more. With more than 50 full-time faculty members, the school’s growing research portfolio complements its long-standing commitment to excellence in teaching and student mentoring. Baylor’s undergraduate program in teacher education has earned national distinction for innovative partnerships with local schools that provide future teachers deep clinical preparation, while graduate programs culminating in both the Ed.D. and Ph.D. prepare outstanding leaders, teachers and clinicians through an intentional blend of theory and practice. Visit to learn more.

Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 16,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.

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