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U.S. Department of Health & Human Services

June Fellow of the Month

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Ellie Potts

June 2024 Fellow of the Month Profile Photo
Ellie Potts is a 2023-2024 doctoral fellow with the National Board of Certified Counselors (NBCC). She received a bachelor’s degree in communications from Mercer University in 2004 and a master’s degree in clinical rehabilitation counseling from Georgia State University in 2021. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in counselor education and supervision at the University of Georgia (UGA), where she also works as a graduate research assistant. Ellie has faced challenges in her career path that have led her to where she is today. Ellie has cerebral palsy, which affects all four of her major extremities. Her personal and professional experiences have given Ellie a unique perspective on accessibility in education and counseling. She is passionate about increasing awareness and advocating for fair and accessible treatment for physically and intellectually diverse communities.

Ellie was drawn to the MFP because of the opportunities to expand her network with like-minded professionals. She shared, “I wanted to build a network of researchers who were interested in the same things that I am. I wanted to get to know other people from marginalized communities who are active in research.”

When reflecting on how the MFP has enriched her academic and professional career, Ellie shared that her experience as a fellow provides opportunities and support for her professional growth and development. She stated, “The MFP has supported my conference travel and will be important in supporting my dissertation research.”

In addition to her studies and work as a research assistant, Ellie is developing an innovative program to promote advocacy and awareness for counseling access. She shared, “I am working on a program to implement Universal Design for Learning (UDL) in counselor education. I want to help make counseling a more accessible profession and help counselors to better communicate with diverse clients. I'm also working to help students with intellectual disabilities at UGA gain access to the same counseling resources as other students on campus.”

Ellie plans to apply the knowledge and skills acquired through the MFP to her practice as a professional counselor, educator, and advocate. She shared, “I want to use the things I'm learning about in research and teaching to make the counseling profession more welcoming to people with disabilities and all marginalized communities.”

After completing her Ph.D., Ellie plans to become a professor and remain actively involved in advocating for therapy for marginalized communities . She explained “I want to be a professor and conduct research on issues surrounding disability in counseling. I also want to teach and advocate for and with people from marginalized communities.”

When asked her advice for anyone thinking about applying to the MFP, Ellie provided these inspiring words, “Do it! It's an awesome program and the connections that you make with people will help you continue to excel in your work.”

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