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Getting to Know Your Counselor, Jennifer Toadvine 

Toadvine in her office in Commons Building, Student Affairs Suite.

By: Margot Gargus, The Lion’s Eye Staff Writer, mbg5317@psu.edu

Coming from a background of adoptive parents and friends’ dependent on her, Jennifer Toadvine knew her calling. Jennifer is the clinical counselor here on the Brandywine campus in the commons building. She works and talks with students every day to discuss their issues and help them through college. After starting here just about a year ago, Toadvine says she’s now comfortable on campus and is happy to be at Brandywine.

When asked what made Toadvine dive into the counseling world, her face lit up. She stated, “I remember growing up and I was always the person people came to talk to, so in a weird way I just fell into counseling.” Jennifer moved on to talk about her family life, and how that had affected her choice. She said, “being adopted, my family was very different than a lot of other families, it made me very curious, so I actually ended up getting my degree as a couples and family therapist.” Using her prior experiences, she was able to migrate to counseling.

Jennifer loves school and everything it has to offer. Earning her undergrad at Elon University in North Carolina, and a master’s in couples and family therapy at Thomas Jefferson in Philadelphia, she then went to Widener University for her master’s in education, and Ph. D. in human sexuality. “I absolutely love school and what it has to offer and if I could still be taking classes I would!” she stated.

She fell in love with Brandywine the day she arrived. “It is so small and personal, everyone knows everyone and they just invite you in,” she said. She believes that college is an extremely difficult and important time in someone’s life, which is why she chooses to counsel college students. “You guys have a lot going on as commuter students,” she stated, “with your families still having a big part in your life because you’re living at home… I love to help students and listen to them. I love being able to walk building-to-building and recognize people. It is also incredible to meet some of the students and watch them grow as individuals and find themselves, I feel, as a counselor, that’s one of the best aspects of my job.”

Being a counselor, Toadvine is asked every day for advice and is called upon to be there in times of need. She may even be considered a mentor to some people. When asked who her mentors were she smiled and said, “I was really influenced by my undergrad research mentor. I still talk to her and that relationship was just so fabulous. Authors and therapists also have influenced me. I love looking at the way they think about their profession and their thoughts on certain topics. I also thank the people who have taught me throughout my life and helped shape me into the therapist I am today.”

Being someone to turn to on our campus, Jennifer Toadvine cannot wait to move forward with her career here at Brandywine. She is excited to mentor counseling interns in her office too.

Students are encouraged to make an appointment or stop by her office. Whether it’s a small worry about a class or relationship; need to vent; or an ongoing concern, Toadvine’s door is always open. The counseling office is in 213 Commons, in the Student Affairs Suite.

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