Anna Sincock is a grief, anxiety, and couples counselor at her private practice Resplendence Counseling in Grand Rapids, Michigan. As a wife and mother of four, Anna has found counseling to be an ideal career for her busy life. Not only does her job come with flexibility and allow her to make her own schedule, but Anna gets to leave the office every day knowing that the work she does matters.
How did Anna find herself in such an ideal situation, you ask? It all began with a google search for online Christian counseling degrees.
1. Looking back, what would you have told yourself when you were just enrolling in the online Christian counseling degree?
Looking back, I wish I realized just how valuable the rigorous nature of the program would be for my education and career. When I began the program, I remember feeling so overwhelmed during my first residency as I realized just how rigorous and challenging the counseling program really is. It is tough. However, as I continued in the program, I realized that the rigorous nature of the program was exactly what I needed to become a skilled and grounded professional. During my clinical internship, it all came together as I realized that my knowledge and clinical skills were already head and shoulders above those I interned alongside (students attending other programs). Why? Because of the rigor of Grace’s program. Now that I have graduated and I am working in the field, I recognize that what I value the most about my education is the rigor & quality of the program. I have no doubt that I’m a more skilled, grounded, and competent counselor because of Grace’s program and the professors who set the bar high and encouraged me to reach it. While it was challenging, it was absolutely worth it, and I am so grateful!
2. What was it like to search for mental health counseling graduate programs? What drew you to Grace’s program?
After I received my undergraduate degree in psychology in 2012, I got married and decided to take a year off to adjust to married life and work in a clinical setting prior to beginning my graduate education. That year was incredibly valuable! In 2013, I decided to research online Christian counseling degrees because I valued the integration of Christianity in my counseling education. Because I was working full-time, I also needed an online program. Through a simple Google Search, I found the online Christian counseling degree at Grace College and immediately realized how affordable it was compared to other mental health counseling graduate programs. Then, once I read about the hybrid and cohort nature of the program, I knew it was the right choice for me!
3. What was most beneficial for you about the program?
The Marriage and Family course was absolutely the highlight of the program for me. This course provided me with a couples counseling certification as an intern, which is uncommon! The skills I learned in that course combined with the certification prepared me to confidently and skillfully work with couples upon graduation. I still use the skills and techniques from the certification in my work with couples today!
Additionally, the emphasis that Grace’s program places on learning how to correctly diagnose mental disorders was invaluable! As I entered the workforce, I quickly realized that my training provided me with the skills to confidently diagnose mental disorders compared to colleagues who had less rigorous training.
4. Why was the Residency helpful for you?
Truthfully, the residency was most helpful to build relationships with my cohort and faculty. As a cohort, we attended every class together throughout the entire program. Meeting those individuals in person was key to building quality, meaningful relationships.
5. What year did you graduate, and what are you doing now?
I graduated with my online Christian counseling degree in 2016, with my one-year-old and husband by my side. We now have three young boys and a baby girl. I own a small private practice in Grand Rapids, Michigan, called Resplendence Counseling, which I opened in 2018. Running my own practice has provided me the freedom to create my own schedule and work part-time so that I can spend the majority of my time with my family & discipling my children. I love that counseling is such a flexible career! At my counseling practice, I specialize in grief, anxiety, and couples counseling. I enjoy all three of those specialties, but the pandemic shifted my emphasis to anxiety. I love my career & look forward to serving my clients every week. I’d like to become a clinical supervisor in early 2022 and hope to expand my practice to bring on other like-minded, Christ-centered, skilled clinicians. The world needs more counselors who love Jesus and share His hope & life with others, and that’s exactly what I hope my practice will do!
Does Anna’s experience pique your interest in online Christian counseling degrees? Learn more today!