A delegation of five visitors from the Ministry of Education of the Sultanate of Oman with an interest in college advising and career counseling recently met with faculty from the College of Education’s Department of Student Development and Pupil Personnel Services under the auspices of the World Affairs Council of Western Massachusetts.
Each member of the delegation heads the Career Guidance Section for a particular region in Oman. The delegation specifically requested to meet with faculty from the School 's National Center for School Counseling Outcome Research (CSCOR), said Cynthia Melcher, World Affairs Council’s executive director.
During the morning meeting on the Amherst campus, the Omanis, aided by interpreters, discussed research-based school and career counseling practices in the U.S. with Drs. John C. Carey, Carey Dimmitt, and Richard Lapan, and assistant research fellow Karen Harrington. Over the course of three days the delegation also met with representatives from Holyoke Community College, Deerfield Academy and the Bement School in Deerfield, Roger L. Putnam Vocational Technical High School in Springfield, Holyoke Catholic High School in Chicopee, and Smith College in Northampton. They visited Omaha, NE, Raleigh, NC and Washington, D.C., before returning to Oman.
The Center for School Counseling Outcome Research is dedicated to improving the practice of school counseling by generating, identifying, and disseminating research related to the field, providing evaluation and consultation to support best practices, developing interventions with demonstrated efficacy and positive outcomes, and building the capacity of school counselors. CSCOR provides a range of services, including professional development training, intervention and program evaluation, and consultation.
The World Affairs Council is associated with the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) of the US Department of State that brings to the United States approximately 5,000 foreign nationals from all over the world to meet and confer with their professional counterparts and to experience America firsthand. Dozens of Chiefs of State and Current Heads of Government are IVLP Alumni, including Nicolas Sarkozy, Yukio Hatoyama, Gordon Brown, Morgan Tsvangirai, and Hamid Karzai.