Criminal Justice Major Katie Nolan Training to Become a Crisis Counselor

October is domestic violence awareness month and Seton Hill students are becoming involved with awareness efforts now more than ever before. Senior women’s basketball player Katie Nolan is a criminal justice major with a psychology minor. Not only is she involved on campus through the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) and the Criminal Justice Club, she is also completing an internship through the Blackburn Center. In addition, Katie is in the process of becoming a crisis counselor who aids those involved in domestic violence cases. Katie recently took the time out of her busy schedule to answer a few questions about becoming a counselor.

How did you get involved with the Blackburn Center and what made you want to become a crisis counselor?

I heard of this volunteer program through my academic advisor here at Seton Hill. I inquired and applied for the position and was lucky enough to get an interview. I am excited to become a crisis counselor because I want to help women, men and children who have suffered from domestic violence. I want to be a difference maker in their lives and help them to get past these difficulties. This is also really great experience for my future; I eventually want to obtain my Ph.D. in psychology.

Why do you think it is important for young people to get involved with domestic violence awareness and education on the subject?

I think it is very important because not everyone realizes that anyone - women, men and children - can be affected by domestic violence. I also think that there are some who individuals who are victims and do not even realize it and, unfortunately, there are some young abusers who do not realize that they are abusing people through their actions. Having the education to recognize the signs of domestic violence is not only beneficial to me but those around me. You never know whose life you might save by educating them. So, not only is it important for victims and abusers to become educated, but everyone.

What are some of your goals as a crisis counselor?

My main goals are to be able to help whoever calls in on the hotline and to become more educated on the issues that occur in domestic violence situations. I want to be more understanding of why people may choose to stay in unhealthy situations. I want to be a voice for those who have lost theirs. I hope this new experience gives me an opportunity to always learn something new and be able to help others to the best of my abilities.