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Charmayne Adams, a PhD student in counselor education, has traveled the world, but this Vol knows she always has a home on Rocky Top.

Tell us a little about yourself.

Charmayne at a nutrition clinic in Guatemala.

I am originally from Grand Rapids, Michigan, but I completed my BA in psychology in Kentucky and my MA in clinical mental health counseling in North Carolina. I have an awesome dog named Lilly who has been with me throughout all my adventures. We love hiking, hanging out by the water, and traveling. I’ve been to Guatemala, the Dominican Republic, Iceland, the Bahamas, Mexico, Canada, and will be heading to Columbia this summer. South Africa is next on my list.

What makes you unique?

I came to the field of counseling and counselor education through a nontraditional route. I started as a conservation biology major, switched to special education, and finally landed in psychology. It took a lot of searching to find my home in counselor education, but now that I am here, I couldn’t imagine myself doing anything else. I love being able to research, supervisor counselors, teach, and continue my own clinical work.

What tips do you have for your fellow students?

  • Get plenty of rest.
  • Travel often—experiences are worth more than tangible objects.
  • Open yourself up to whatever life has in store; happenstance is real.
  • Push yourself outside of your comfort zone and experience different cultures, foods, and customs.
  • Work hard to find what fits, and don’t be discouraged if what you try doesn’t work out. Oftentimes figuring out what you don’t want to do can be just as valuable as figuring out exactly what you want to do.

What does the Volunteer spirit mean to you?

Charmayne (right) at her first-ever SEC football game.

Volunteer spirit means having a love for the university I attend and all that comes with it. There are some decisions that the university has made recently that I’m not proud of, but there is plenty going on that is worth shouting from the rooftop. I am so happy to be at the University of Tennessee and proud to say I went to my first football game this past season! I am looking forward to many more adventures here on Rocky Top as I finish my PhD.

Want to nominate someone to be featured in an upcoming “Meet Our Volunteer Family” spotlight? Nominate them here.