Montana Skye Sewell, a University of Florida third-year master’s and educational specialist student in Counselor Education, has been chosen to receive the 2018 Outstanding Entry Level Student Award from Chi Sigma Iota (CSI), an international honor society for the counseling profession.
Sewell will be recognized for the honor in April at the American Counseling Association annual conference in Atlanta. She has been cited for her excellence in scholarship, extracurricular involvement, and service and commitment to UF’s CSI Beta Chapter and the counseling profession. Her chapter leadership has included serving as secretary and a member of the professional development and communications committees.
The UF chapter membership grew by 15 percent last year during Sewell’s term as co-chair of the membership and social committee.
“New Counselor Ed students report that the activities planned by Chi Sigma Iota under Montana’s leadership greatly contributed to their successful adjustment to graduate school,” said Counselor Education Associate Professor Jacqueline Swank, the faculty adviser for the CSI Beta chapter.
Sewell also helped plan the 2017 state conference of the Florida Society of Social Sciences and assisted with the recent UF Social Justice Summit co-hosted by the College of Education.
She currently carries a 3.96 GPA while working full time as an event planner for a local disc jockey-emcee entertainment company, serving a counseling internship at local Westwood Middle School, and caring for her mother who is battling cancer. The Gainesville native also has been an active volunteer at a local youth shelter.
“We recently organized a small group of UF counseling students and faculty to help with crisis counseling at one of our local schools. Montana was one of the few entry-level students we invited to come along because of her demonstrated excellence as a school counseling intern,” wrote Associate Professor Sondra Smith in her letter nominating Sewell for the CSI award. “Montana was there sitting and drawing with students and letting them talk. She was such a helpful addition to the team.”
Sewell says the passion of her Counselor Ed professors has reinforced her decision to make school counseling her chosen profession.
“I have learned the impact that feeling safe, seen and heard can have on education,” Sewell said, “and I aim to be that source of support to students in schools.”
WRITER / MEDIA RELATIONS: Larry Lansford, UF College of Education; 352-273-4137; firstname.lastname@example.org