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More than a mentor

WVU social work professor honored for mentorship

For Carrie Rishel, a mentor is someone who pushes others to strive to be the best they can be and who, no matter what, stands by his or her mentee through hardships.

Carrie Rishel

“I try to be that model for my students, not necessarily telling them what to do but serving as an example,” said Rishel, School of Social Work professor and director of the Integrated Mental and Behavior Health Training Program.

Rishel will be honored this fall as an effective mentor in the Council on Social Work Education’s Council on the Role and Status of Women in Social Work Education Mentor Recognition Program.

The program recognizes mentors who have made a difference in the field of social work and reflect the goals of the Women’s Council.

“The program recognizes people who have helped other women grow in their careers and move forward,” Rishel said. “I see a leader as someone who should set an example or be a model for others to follow, but also to be that support system alongside them.”

She and other mentors will be recognized during the Council on Social Work Education’s annual program meeting Oct. 18-22 in Dallas, Texas.

Helen Hartnett, professor in the School of Social Work and administrative leadership fellow in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, works alongside Rishel in the Behavior Health Training Program and nominated Rishel the award.

Helen Hartnett

“(Rishel) was a mentor to me that came after me in terms of her career cycle, but we were really peers along the same path, learning together,” Hartnett said. “I think mentorship is the way you learn from people and how they help you grow, so I wanted her to be recognized for that.”

However, Rishel believes they have both learned a lot through the training program not only because of their research, but also from their collaboration.

“I see it as we really co-mentored each other because we help each other see things from a different perspective and our work together has exceeded what we could have done individually,” Rishel said.