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Lauren NaruseLauren Naruse

Maui, Hawaii  
Wheaton College  
Clinical Mental Health Counseling
Class of 2020  
lauren_naruse@williamjames.edu 

Aloha Prospective Students!  

I was born and raised in Maui, Hawaii and I moved to Massachusetts when I attended Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts. At Wheaton College, I earned a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Psychology with a minor in Public Health. During my undergraduate career, I was a four-year varsity athlete for the Women’s Swimming and Diving team. In addition to this, I worked as a research assistant in a psychology lab studying perception. I am currently a full-time student with a general emphasis in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling Program at William James College. 

After completing my undergraduate degree, I worked for three years at Franciscan Children’s where I worked as a Mental Health Specialist in the children and adolescent inpatient psychiatric unit. Through my work as a Mental Health Specialist, I worked with individuals who were in acute crisis and were at high risk to themselves or others. In addition to this, I collaboratively worked with a variety of professionals that were involved in the direct care for the patients on the unit. I feel that my time as a Mental Health Specialist has better prepared me for Graduate-level work, as it has provided me the opportunity to develop my skills as a counselor and encouraged me to foster a deeper sense of empathy for all.  

I was drawn to William James College because of their emphasis on experiential education. Students are working in placement sites while completing coursework. I am the type of person that learns by doing things and through this format, I found that I am better able to connect with material by applying what I have learned at my placement site the next day.  

William James College’s faculty-to-student ratio is ideal for a conducive learning environment. With smaller class sizes, I am better able to foster relationships with my professors and have enriching conversations with peers. All my professors have exceeded my expectations with how much care and support they provide for their students. They constantly push me to be the best clinician I can be and encourage me to ask every question I can think of.  

During my time in the Clinical Mental Health Counseling program, I have been able to sharpen my skills as a clinician through the coursework and enriching conversations with peers. I aim to work with children and adolescents in the future and in being in a general emphasis, this has allowed me to take courses that are in line with my future goal.     

Making the decision to move to a new area, whether it is a new state or a new continent, is incredibly intimidating and daunting.  I definitely got lost in the details of everything and found it was easy to let that seed of doubt grow, however, it was through the connections I made with friends and professors at William James College that I was able to get back on my feet again. I am proud to be a part of this community and look forward to my future as a graduate from this program. If you have any questions about anything, please feel free to reach out to me!

Mahalo nui loa.