USM Graduate Psychology Student Earns Prestigious Fellowship Honor

6/28/2012 12:00:00 AM

Susan Lawol is USM’s First Recipient of the Boren Fellowship for International Study


Susan Lawol

(Leavenworth, Kan.)—Susan Lawol, a student in the Master’s of Arts-Counseling Psychology program at the University of Saint Mary, has been named USM’s first recipient of the prestigious Boren Fellowship for International Study.
The fellowship is sponsored by the National Security Education Program (NSEP), a major federal initiative that enables graduate students to further their foreign language skills and broaden their international experience through work in countries critical to national security.
Lawol, of Westwood, Kan., will use her Boren fellowship to study the Acholi language in Northern Uganda and research psychological interventions for communities who have been impacted by armed conflict. Lawol says she is specifically interested in using her fieldwork as a basis for designing and implementing more culturally sensitive psychological programs for children who have sustained emotional trauma due to the ongoing crisis in Uganda.
Lawol is currently doing her practicum at the Family Service and Guidance Center in Topeka, Kan., where she works in a psychosocial group focused on providing therapeutic services to children with serious emotional disturbances. Lawol said she first became interested in psychosocial rehabilitation during volunteer trips to Cape Town, South Africa, and Port Au Prince, Haiti.
“Susan is an excellent student who has demonstrated a high level of dedication to serving those in need,” said Dr. Les Hemphill, director of graduate psychology programs for the University of Saint Mary. “We’re proud of her accomplishments.”
Prior to attending USM, Lawol earned her bachelor’s from Hunter College of the City University of New York. Following the completion of her fellowship, Lawol will pursue a Ph.D. in international psychology at the Chicago School of Professional Psychology. The Boren Fellowship carries with it an NSEP service requirement, which Lawol plans on fulfilling by working for a federal agency that coordinates global humanitarian relief efforts.
Go to to learn more about the Boren Fellowship.
USM’s Master’s in Counseling Psychology is one of five graduate programs offered by the University of Saint Mary at the university’s Overland Park Campus and online, including offerings in education and the Saint Mary MBA. Learn more about USM’s evening and graduate programs at

The University of Saint Mary is a Catholic co-educational applied liberal arts university founded and sponsored by the Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth. The University of Saint Mary is located at 4100 South 4th Street, Leavenworth, Kan., with additional locations in Overland Park and Kansas City, Kan. Visit for more information.