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Mercyhurst art therapy program earns national ranking

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Mercyhurst University is ranked as having one of the top undergraduate degrees among the nation’s art therapy programs, according to Best Counseling Degrees. Mercyhurst ranked 30 of the 35 schools making the list, was one of five schools in Pennsylvania, and the only one in Erie County to be recognized.

According to the organization’s web site: “Students in this program (art therapy major) will engage in, and come to understand, the healing process of art through art classes, research, and community service. Through engaging with art at numerous levels, students will learn the therapeutic benefit of art and how the process of engaging in art can lead to change and growth. Students at Mercyhurst are encouraged to engage and explore with each other and the community through coursework, community service, and campus life activities. All courses are taught by faculty (rather than graduate teaching assistants) with a student/faculty ratio of 14:1.”

Mercyhurst’s art therapy program director is Heather Denning, who is a member of the university’s art department chaired by Jodi Staniunas-Hopper.

“Mercyhurst’s art therapy undergraduate degree is a cornerstone in our art department,” said Staniunas-Hopper. “It is one of a handful of AT degrees where you take actual art therapy classes taught by a board certified art therapist to learn the healing and restorative powers of art. Our university places art therapy within the art department because knowledge of the arts is essential and the core of art therapy. Our program focuses on art process for therapeutic application and art product for the burgeoning artists who have chosen the field.” 

The mission of Best Counseling Degrees is to share expert information about the top counseling degrees in the country to help students achieve their professional goals in helping people overcome a wide range of problems. The ranking was created using information from the NCES College Navigator database.

To learn more, visit the Best Counseling Degrees website.