Department of Psychology

Alumni Reflections on WIU's School Psychology Program

Photo of Emily Grooms

Emily Grooms, Class of 2020
School Psychologist for Moline-Coal Valley School District #40

 "I really enjoyed the close knit relationships and professional connections that I was able to build during my time in the WIU School Psychology program. The small cohort sizes and low student to faculty ratio allowed me to get to know my peers and professors, while maintaining the level of support I needed to be successful and grow in my skills. Having the opportunity to experience rural schools and the broad variety of tasks a school psychologist does depending on the area/schools they serve was a major benefit to the program." 


Keenan Gil-McQuilan, Class of 2015

 Keenan Gil-McQuillan, Class of 2015
Nationally Certified School Psychologist
Sangamon Area Special Education District
New Berlin/Virginia/Athens-CIS

"During my practicums at WIU, I was able to work with students, parents, and staff members in rural areas. In contrast, I completed my internship in a more urban city. The experiences that a school psychologist gains in the  two settings can be very different, yet equally important. I believe my involvement in both locales gave me a broader, richer knowledge of what this career can entail."

Tom Fagan and Mark Swerdlik

Dr. Tom Fagan, former school psychology faculty,
and Dr. Mark Swerdlik

"At WIU, I learned what the field of school psychology actually was, its history, ethics and professional standards, and developed entry-level professional skills and the professional dispositions necessary for effective practice. I also was exposed to my first professional role models, one of whom, Dr. Tom Fagan has served as a lifelong mentor and adviser."

Dr. Mark Swerdlik, M.S., 1972 School Psychology Graduate and Recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award by the National Association of School Psychologists


Ryanne Nason, Class of 2016

Ryanne Nason, Class of 2016
Nationally Certified School Psychologist
West Central Illinois Special Education Cooperative
Macomb, IL

"My experiences in School Psychology Program at WIU were outstanding. The professors provided support as they helped me develop the skill set necessary to pursue and realize my dream to become a school psychologist.  WIU's comprehensive instruction and real-world approach resulted in a smooth transition to my internship and to my career. The knowledge and understanding I gained in the WIU program have made me a confident school psychologist."