US News World Report Best Grad Schools 2021
US News World Report Best Grad Schools 2021

UNC Greensboro School of Education’s Counseling and Educational Development (CED) department was named No. 3 nationally and No. 1 in North Carolina in the U.S. News & World Report’s 2021 Best Graduate Schools rankings, jumping from No. 6 last year. The CED department has consistently been recognized as a top graduate school by the U.S. News & World Report, ranking in the Top 8 list for more than two decades.

“This ranking validates the hard work conducted by our faculty, staff, and students,” says Dr. Kelly Wester, Chair of the CED department. “While we value where our program has been, we also look forward to growth and new initiatives, such as providing telehealth to UNCG students and members of the surrounding community, and the training we are creating for mental health and educational professionals outside of our department.”

CED is welcoming four new faculty this school year, and the department continues to be involved in active research and community projects. One particularly prevalent project is with Dr. Carrie Wachter Morris and Dr. L. DiAnne Borders, who have a grant with Rockingham County Schools (RCS) to explore social-emotional learning for its teachers, staff, and students. This year, multiple CED faculty and interns have provided mental health and trauma training to help prepare RCS teachers and staff for this school year, surrounding the stress of COVID-19, remote learning, and civil unrest.

Additionally, the Nicholas A. Vacc Counseling and Consulting Clinic (housed in the CED) is starting to provide telehealth services to students and local community members, a service that the department did not have available prior to this year. The Vacc Clinic is directed by Dr. Jennifer Cannon, and its new telehealth services are expected to be up and running by September 2020 — it will also serve as a free Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for RCS staff and teachers.

CED has started an initiative called the North Carolina Academy for Stress, Trauma and Resilience (NCA-STAR). There are three branches of the Academy (UNCG community, local community, and schools) in which it will be doing trainings, research, and service provision. This is particularly relevant given the increases in experiences of trauma, vicarious trauma, and mental health due to COVID-19 and civil unrest, and the disparities that COVID-19 has unearthed for some individuals/families.

To learn more about the CED department, visit