Work Hard, Dare Greatly, Care about the World: a Q&A with Heidi Schibuk

IMG_6088Heidi Schibuk is a doctoral student in the Counseling Psychology program. Recently, she discussed her research interests, why she came to Fordham, and how she is like a pair of shoes.

What are your research interests? How did you get interested in those topics?
My main research interests are mindfulness, social-emotional learning, and the treatment of chronic stress in youth and young adults.

I became interested in these topics working as a City Year AmeriCorps Member at a middle school in the South Bronx. Working there, I saw how promoting students’ social-emotional development could buffer the toxic effects of poverty and build resilience. I found practicing mindfulness to be one of the most effective ways of promoting social-emotional skills – not only for the students I worked with, but for myself as well.

I was motivated to do research in mindfulness when I had the opportunity to feel the benefits of the practice first hand. I completed a Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) course and found that it not only improved my own well-being but it made me more effective in my ability to help others.

Currently, I am supporting one of Dr. Jennie Park-Taylor’s research teams. Our team is exploring the relationship between mindfulness and social justice.

What is your academic background?
I studied Psychology as an undergraduate at McGill University. I studied a variety of research topics there such as language development in infants, internet addiction, and the relationship between learning disabilities and ADHD.

Why should prospective students consider Fordham GSE and, specifically, the Counseling Psychology doctoral program?
Students should consider GSE because it is a learning community of compassionate and dedicated leaders who are striving to make the world a better place.

Students interested in pursuing a doctorate in Counseling should consider GSE because it is a program that will provide the support you need to help you reach your potential. My advice is to consider the kind of learning community you want to be a part of.

What is your personal philosophy? How do you define success?
To work hard, dare greatly, and care about the world and the people in it.

When you get to spend your days completely absorbed in what you love. I think success is demonstrated by a willingness to understand, to grow, and to demonstrate passionate persistence in the face of challenge.

What is the best book you have ever read?
Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor Frankl…and Harry Potter.

If you were an object, what would you be and why?
I think I would be a pair of shoes because they keep you grounded, they protect your feet and they like to explore new places.



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