Seattle, WA—The NBCC Foundation, an affiliate of the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC), recently selected Hangatu Umar Dawud of Seattle, Washington, for the NBCC Minority Fellowship Program-Mental Health Counseling-Master’s (MFP-MHC-M). As an NBCC MFP-MHC-M Fellow, Dawud will receive funding and training to support her education and facilitate her service to underserved populations.
The NBCC MFP-MHC-M is made possible by a grant awarded to the NBCC Foundation by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The NBCC Foundation administers the MFP-MHC-M, including training and collaboration activities, such as webinars, that are open to all board certified counselors. The goal of the program is to reduce health disparities and improve behavioral health care outcomes for racially and ethnically diverse populations by increasing the number of professional counselors providing effective, culturally competent services to underserved populations.
The NBCC Foundation will distribute $10,000 to Dawud and the other 29 master’s-level counseling students selected to receive the fellowship award. Dawud is a graduate of Western Washington University and is currently enrolled at Seattle University, where she is pursuing a master’s degree in the clinical mental health counseling program. Upon graduation, Dawud intends to work with diverse, underrepresented, underserved, marginalized, and disenfranchised members of her community. Her educational experience has expanded her understanding of the different practices that target improving access to mental health services.
Dawud is a Seattle native and an active member of the Oromo, Muslim community, which is in dire need of these types of resources. There is an epidemic of substance use disorder that is correlated with the trauma affecting her community members, especially the youth. These mental health disparities motivate and strengthen her passion for making a difference in her community. She aspires to work toward eliminating systemic barriers in providing holistic and patient-centered care to all her clients. She believes that when working with clients, it is critical to understand each client’s lived experience in order to provide them with the necessary tools and strategies to remove all barriers that may prevent them from achieving their ultimate well-being.
Dawud’s goal is to utilize a trusted and tailored approach for all of her clients. Earning this fellowship will provide her with the opportunity to attend counseling conferences that will allow her to establish a stronger professional identity as a counselor. It will also grant her the opportunity to expand her skills in order to better advocate for underserved populations. Lastly, it will ensure Dawud a national network of mental health practitioners.
The NBCC Foundation has also awarded 20 $20,000 doctoral fellowships through the MFP and 40 master’s-level fellowships of $15,000 through the MFP for Addictions Counselors (MFP-AC). The NBCC Foundation plans to open the next NBCC MFP-MHC-M application period in fall 2020. To learn more about the NBCC MFP and its fellows, please visit nbccf.org/Programs/Fellows.
*Biographical information provided by the awardee.
About the NBCC Foundation
The NBCC Foundation is the nonprofit affiliate of the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC), based in Greensboro, North Carolina. NBCC is the nation’s premier professional certification board devoted to credentialing counselors who meet standards for the general and specialty practices of professional counseling. Currently, there are more than 66,000 board certified counselors in the United States and over 50 countries. The NBCC Foundation’s mission is to leverage the power of counseling by strategically focusing resources for positive change.