Counselor ed leader to get career development update

Contact: Maridith Geuder

A Mississippi State University professor is representing the state at a national education reform institute.

Joe Ray Underwood of counselor education is the only Mississippi delegate attending the Career Development Training Institute. He will attend sessions on school-to-career initiatives, economic and demographic issues affecting education, and the role of career development and workplace development.

Underwood is a state trainer for the National Association of Career Development, a sponsor of the Oct. 7-8 program in Albany, N.Y. He was named Mississippi's representative by the state Occupational Information Coordinating Committee, another institute sponsor.

Mississippi trainers help educators constantly update their skills. "We present resource materials about areas such as special needs students, women in the workplace, persons with disabilities, and at-risk children," Underwood explained.

An educator long recognized for promoting career development in Mississippi, Underwood teaches courses in placement and career development. He joined the faculty in 1974.

Co-author of a counseling manual for the East Mississippi Center for Educational Development, he regularly leads training sessions on career information and decision making.

He is one of four Mississippi educators now training to become certified instructors through the Career Development Training Institute at Oakland (Calif.) University.

Underwood holds bachelor's and master's degrees from Mississippi State, where he was 1966-67 student body president. He received a doctorate from the University of Wisconsin.

He founded the state Odyssey of the Mind organization, as well as the university's Summer Scholars Camps for Talented and Gifted Students, now in its 14th year.