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College of Education and Human Development
School of Sport, Recreation, and Tourism Management
Social Justice Advocate
April 15, 2021
April 15, 2021
FAIRFAX, Va.—George Mason University Assistant Professor Shekila Melchior has been selected as the recipient of the 2021 Dr. Mary Smith Arnold Anti-Oppression Award from the Counselors for Social Justice (CSJ), a division of the American Counseling Association.
The Dr. Mary Smith Arnold Anti-Oppression Award honors professional counselors and counselor educators who have an exemplary record of challenging multiple oppressions in the counseling professions as well as in their local schools and communities.
Melchior, co-academic program coordinator for the counseling and development program in the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD), is the president of the Virginia Alliance for School Counseling. She is also a board representative for CSJ and serves as the co-chair of the CEHD Equity Advisor Team.
“Dr. Melchior embodies a true social justice advocate,” said Associate Professor Sam Steen, who shares co-academic program coordinator duties. “Her scholarship, teaching, and service resonates within every aspect of our counseling preparation program. Due to her local, regional, and national service and collective approach with all true advocates, the opportunities afforded to our faculty and students are endless.”
About George Mason University’s College of Education and Human Development
The College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, inspires undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral students to promote learning and development across the life span. Innovative, inclusive, and cutting-edge, the college and its 30 academic programs that spread across three schools (School of Education, School of Kinesiology, and School of Sport, Recreation, and Tourism Management) prepare professionals who improve lives and make a difference for the community and for the world. The college is a nationally recognized leader in educator preparation, special education, counseling, and school leadership; prides itself in far-reaching expertise that includes sport management, human performance, athletic training, recreation management, and tourism and events management; and is home to 9 centers engaged in groundbreaking research. Learn more at https://cehd.gmu.edu.
About Mary Smith Arnold
Dr. Mary Smith Arnold (1946-2003) was a cherished member of the counseling and human development professions and a founding mother of Counselors for Social Justice. She was active in civil rights struggles throughout her all too short life and a Counselor Educator on the faculties of Governors State and Kent State Universities specializing in Community and Couple, Marital, and Family Counseling. She was the co-creator of the Unlearning Oppression workshops, taught to thousands of students and colleagues around the world. An ally to all oppressed peoples, Dr. Arnold’s spirit of expecting equity and justice for all peoples was evident in her leadership roles in ACA as a CSJ Governing Council representative and in her work as co-chair of ACA’s Public Policy and Legislation committee.