Friday, July 03, 2009

Monday Parttime Course Finishes

Entry for 21 June 2009:

Like Billy Pilgrim in Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse 5, I’ve come unstuck in time, at least as far as my blog goes, and am only now getting to material that I wrote down in my Pukka Pad on the flight from Spain to Chile. So be it!

* * *
An exhausting final week of the Monday PT course, in which we met every day. Many tears shed; one of my students said that they’d cried more this week than the entire two years preceding. Meeting for this 5-day intensive raised the course to a level of intensity that seemed to facilitate the process of clarifying progress in development as a counsellor. Students read each other’s self-appraisal statements describing their journey and current levels of functioning, and met with their PPD groups on Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday was a very long day of presenting their decisions about whether to take the diploma (the course uses a self-assessment process). For me this was the emotional pivot of the week, powerful and moving. Thursday was a long large group in which the students each took 10 min to present and get feedback on their decision. This was more contained but had many powerful moments, especially when individual students broke out of the mold to present their decisions in creative ways. Friday began with a final unstructured large group that addressed some long-standing one running issues and provided one last opportunity to practice resolving relational ruptures. We worked right to the end, before breaking for a final party/celebration of the two years of the course and its conclusion. This week-long intensive format seemed to work quite well; I would recommend it as a format for ending a parttime course.

This was the second diploma course I’ve seen through to completion since coming to Strathclyde. I was personally very pleased with how the course turned out and feel that I’ve learned a lot about the training process and how to facilitate it.

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