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transform Fall 2011

A look at how your investment impacts Simpson University and its students

IN THIS ISSUE 4 Student Focus 8 Meet the Faculty 10 Student Service 11 Trustee Profile 12 Campaign Update

Change is part Dear Friend, transform President: Dr. Larry J. McKinney Vice President for Advancement: Gordon Flinn Editor & Layout: Candace Brown Dyar Staff Writer: Elise Wilson ‘08 Photographer: Travis Quam The Transform is a newsletter designed to inform friends of Simpson University about how their gifts are making a difference. For more information about giving to Simpson University, call 1-800-598-2239 or visit On the Cover: Dr. Michelle Engblom-Deglmann is the clinical training director and assistant professor of counseling psychology for Simpson’s M.A.C.P. program. Photo by Adam Deglmann. Simpson University Mission Statement: As a Christ-centered learning community, Simpson University develops students in mind, faith, and character to influence the world through leadership, scholarship, and service.


Fall 2011


y 82-year-old mother recently moved from her home where she had lived for almost 60 years. While she enjoys excellent health, she found it necessary to relocate to a retirement community where she could be freed from the burden of keeping up with a home. She enjoys the company of many other senior adults. She loves it! While it has been a good adjustment for my mother, I know it was hard for her to begin to downsize and move from the home that she had enjoyed for most of her adult life. Going from room to room and deciding what she should keep and what she should give away was not easy. Moving is never easy. Change can be difficult. While I had not lived in that house for many years, I also found myself becoming quite nostalgic when I went back to visit the old home place in the mountains of Western Pennsylvania last summer. I went upstairs to check out my old bedroom. Because I was the only boy in the family, I did not have to share a room with siblings. Not much had changed since I went away to college 43 years ago — the same wallpaper, the same furniture, and the same old smell of home.

of life’s journey

Dr. Larry J. McKinney


Read the president’s blog at

A treasure chest of memories came rushing back — baseball cards, old pictures, fishing equipment, and even my report cards. I must admit I shed a few tears, though it probably was not as difficult for me as it was for my mom. Moving was good for me those many years ago; it required me to prioritize and downsize. It also made me realize how thankful I am that there is a growth process in my life that has moved me from one adventure to another. In Deuteronomy 1:6 God commands the Israelites at Horeb: “You have stayed long enough on this mountain. Break camp and take your journey.” For me, breaking camp took place when I loaded up the family station wagon with my personal belongings and headed off to college. I am grateful that I recognized that I had stayed long enough on the mountain. Although I came from a humble and loving home, I needed to move to grow. Spiritual growth is a journey; professional growth is also a journey. There is a tendency for us to want to stay right where we are because it’s comfortable, safe, and predictable. But if we want to grow closer to God and develop personally and professionally, then we will occasionally feel the tug of the Holy Spirit and hear him whisper that we have remained too long in one place, and it’s time to break camp and take our journey. This is why I thoroughly enjoy working with students in Christ-centered higher education. They come to Simpson University at different stages of life wanting to grow and reach the potential that God has for them. This particular issue of Transform focuses on our new Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology program, which begins its third cohort this fall. The program is a stellar addition to our mission to develop students to impact the world through service. Learn more about it online at Thank you for your faithful support. God bless you! / 1-888-9-SIMPSON 3

STUDENT FOCUS Jovita Garcia, Red Bluff, Calif. M.A.C.P. student (1st year)


ovita Garcia has learned to wait on God’s timing and trust him to fit the pieces together. As a student in Simpson University’s second Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology cohort, she is seeing an exciting integration of her lifelong faith, love for family, and Hispanic culture. “The type of wife and mother I am, the type of counselor — it’s all tied to my relationship with God,” she said. Jovita earned a bachelor’s degree in social work from Humboldt State University in California. “It fit my personality,” she said. “I tend to enjoy the relational, community piece.” Marriage and two children followed. As Jovita poured her energy and passion into her family, she thought about how she would like to help others grasp the importance of these relationships in the overall quality of their lives. When her children went to school, she worked as a family advocate for Northern California Child Development in Red Bluff, which runs 4 TRANSFORM

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Head Start programs and offers counseling services. Jovita visited families, assessed their needs and connected them to resources. But something was missing. “In those moments when they needed a therapist, all I could do was refer them,” she said. “Yet I longed to have the skills to help them in that way, too.” She began to pray about and seek options for further education. “It was almost a calling,” she said. “My driving force was God and the importance of my family. It was broader than just what I wanted — I felt these benefits from my life experiences could be used to help others.” Born in Mexico and growing up in a large Hispanic area of Southern California, Jovita brought a strong cultural understanding to her social work. Her advocacy job in Tehama County, home to many Spanish-speaking immigrant workers, familiarized her with the social issues this population faces. She notes that while religion is often interwined in the Hispanic culture, for many it’s more cultural than personal. “I’d like to be able to help them see that there are healing tools present within their faith,” she said. Jovita learned about Simpson from a friend who attended — but the university did not have a master’s program in counseling psychology at that time. But as she applied to other places, she realized she longed for a spiritual component to her education. She decided to check Simpson’s website — and learned that a new M.A.C.P. program had just been started. It was an ideal fit for a woman longing to integrate her faith with her education and career training. Though M.A.C.P. students do not have to sign a statement of faith to enter the program, all the instructors do; and the curriculum includes both general courses and some specific to Christian counseling. “Not everyone picks this program because it is Christ-centered, but because that is a part about it, I can talk and write about my faith as part of my learning,” Jovita said. “If I went somewhere else, it wouldn’t be the same. Here I’m able to tap into my whole self.” Jovita and her classmates meet three nights a week for two years. She’ll start fieldwork in August and hopes to complete the program in July 2012. Jovita stopped working when she began the M.A.C.P. program in order to balance classes and family time. She said her husband and children, ages 9 and 11, are very supportive of what she’s doing and why. “It’s a wonderful example to them of how important education, family and Christ are to me,” she said. / By Candace Brown Dyar / Photo by Travis Quam / 1-888-9-SIMPSON 5

STUDENT FOCUS Brian Cook, Redding, Calif. M.A.C.P. student (2nd year)


ife flourishes on Brian Cook’s property in the scenic eastern Shasta County foothills. A large garden showcases flowers and vegetables. A menagerie of rescue animals — including 4-year-old Spirit, an Alaskan malamute — receives ample doses of love and training. It’s a setting conducive to carpentry, watercolor painting and hiking — all activities that help Brian balance the time he gives to work and study. This kind of prioritizing — and recognition of what’s truly important — are qualities Brian has acquired as he navigated some difficult life circumstances. He has allowed these same circumstances to guide him toward a career in counseling, where he can focus on helping others. Brian will graduate in December in the first group (cohort) of students to be accepted into Simpson University’s Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology program. Though the program was brand-new, Brian chose it over other area counseling programs because of Simpson’s reputation for high academic standards and professionalism. Having just completed his bachelor’s degree in psychology through Simpson’s School of Continuing Studies (ASPIRE), it also made for an easier logistical transition. Perhaps the most interesting part of the program has been the emphasis on self-growth, Brian said. “During my bachelor’s education, I learned a lot but didn’t grow much as a person,” he said. “In the M.A. program, I thought it’d be similar. The biggest surprise is how much personal growth I’ve gone through. The program forces you to do that.” Cohort members meet weekly to talk about their experiences in the field (at a certain point in the program, students get placed in a local agency and are supervised as they counsel clients). “We learn what style of therapy best fits our personality, and we learn what issues we have that impact our own ability to give therapy,” Brian said. Now 40, Brian first thought about becoming a therapist about 16 years ago when he took a job at a group home for adolescent males. Staff members told


Fall 2011

him he would be a good counselor. He became an intake director, traveling and interviewing young people for the program. “You get people who are drawn to marriage and family therapy because they have dealt with something themselves,” he said. “Initially, I got into group home work because I thought I could understand the kids.” When Brian was 14, Children’s Protective Services removed him from his home. Over the next few years, he lived in some 12 foster homes. “You might not have worked on yourself yet, but you want to help others,” he said. When the facility he worked for closed, Brian switched gears and started working for a tire company. His focus became more about money. By this time, he was also supporting a family. But everything changed when his 7-year-old daughter began experiencing seizures. Brian shifted to a part-time work schedule as they tried to figure out what was wrong. Shortly before her 10th birthday, she passed away at UC Davis Medical Center. A firm diagnosis could not be determined. “Obviously I was devastated,” Brian said. “After a few months off, I went back to work. I decided money doesn’t matter. The experience refocused me on what’s important — people. That’s when I decided to go into therapy and work with kids.” He went to Shasta Community College to finish up some credits, earned his bachelor’s degree through ASPIRE, and went immediately into the M.A.C.P. program. He rearranged his life to pursue his education, starting his own data conversion business to allow for schedule flexibility. His long-term goal is to have a private practice specializing in children and families. “It feels like a calling to me,” he said. — By Candace Brown Dyar / Photo by Travis Quam

MASTER OF ARTS IN COUNSELING PSYCHOLOGY Simpson University’s Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology program is designed to prepare students for California licensure as marriage and family therapists. The fully accredited two-year program offers a broad academic and clinical experience that is uniquely grounded in the identity and values of a Christian university. Visit to learn more. / 1-888-9-SIMPSON 7

MEET THE FACULTY Dr. Michelle Engblom-Deglmann Clinical Training Director, M.A.C.P. program


ichelle Engblom-Deglmann is challenged by the idea of mission, both in her own life and in the Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology program, where she is clinical training director and assistant professor. “God’s mission is big; it’s huge,” she said. “It includes everyday people in everyday places and involves living our lives through and with God. Mission is about meeting him in broken people — meeting God’s children where they are.” Counseling, she asserts, does just that. “When we work with troubled marriages, soldiers returning from war, widows and widowers, children from broken homes, people afraid to leave their houses, we are working with God’s broken children,” she said. “Whether I speak directly of God’s love or not, I am an extension of God’s work and love in the therapy room by my actions, my motives, my integrity, and my heart.” When she discovered her niche in counseling (after majoring in biology in college), Michelle knew she wanted to teach someday. Early in her Ph.D. program at Saint Louis University in Missouri, she began looking at universities nationwide and interviewed at several. Part of Simpson’s initial appeal was its location in an abundant outdoor recreation area (nature remains an avid interest and hobby for Michelle and her husband, Adam, who also run marathons together). A warm, personal interview experience also made the far Northern California university stick in her mind and heart. Though Simpson was different from larger, more research-based institutions she initially thought might be a better fit, “whenever I prayed about it, this was the answer,” she said. “It was clear as day that this was where I should be.” As clinical training director, Michelle is responsible for getting contracts with local agencies for students to do their clinical field placement. She maintains weekly contact with the students and the sites. She also teaches the clinical field placement course/seminar as well as two to three classes a term (there are five terms a year). Earlier this year, Michelle learned that she had received the prestigious 8 TRANSFORM

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Dissertation Award for 2011 from the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy. She’ll be honored in September at the association’s annual conference in Texas. “This ranks her among the best researchers in the field of family therapy,” said Addie Jackson, director of Simpson’s M.A.C.P. program. Michelle’s dissertation examines how an individual’s adjustment to divorce influences his or her level of remarital satisfaction. She grew interested in divorce research as a master’s student at St. Cloud State University in Minnesota. She saw young cousins go through what she was learning in books but realized that “the impact of divorce on children is overstudied,” she said. “As researchers we need to go to what’s understudied. What’s understudied is the impact of divorce on future marriages.” Michelle’s research — which included detailed surveys of more than 500 men and women — was lauded by the dissertation award committee. “We believe her topic has relevance to clients as well as marriage and family therapists,” said chair Kaye Nelson, also a professor at Texas A&M University. In a counseling setting, for instance, focus is often on the family (parents and children/stepchildren) in a remarriage following divorce. But research is showing that the stability of the marital relationship is what makes or breaks the family. Michelle’s research offers specific data about the dynamics at work during post-divorce remarital adjustment (including initiator status, level of trust, emotional detachment, and grieving) — information that could inform counselors as they meet with families. It also helps highlight where future research needs to be done, such as working toward a more updated divorceadjustment assessment tool for clinicians to use. Teaching has been an ideal fit for Michelle. “I want to be a lifelong learner, and teaching is the best way to continue to learn,” she said. Faculty in Simpson’s M.A.C.P. program and undergraduate Psychology Department meet monthly to discuss how to integrate faith with their teaching. For the M.A.C.P. directors, that means presenting a rigorous academic program that also challenges students with intense personal examination and growth as they gain skills to help others. “As Jesus’ love transforms us, we are compelled to share his healing love with our neighbors,” Michelle said. / By Candace Brown Dyar / Photo by Travis Quam M.A.C.P. Program Director Adeline Jackson (left): Addie Jackson came to Simpson with more than 20 years’ experience in various clinical settings and a 12-year academic career. She was instrumental in helping design the new M.A.C.P. program, which launched in spring 2010. Addie has an M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy from Azusa Pacific University and is an Ed.D. candidate in organizational leadership at Argosy University in Hawaii. On the program’s wish list: Funding to rent, lease or buy an off-site clinic for Simpson students to provide counseling services to the community on a sliding fee scale. It would reduce the need for finding other placement sites for students to do fieldwork and would give the university another tangible way to serve others. / 1-888-9-SIMPSON 9

STUDENT SERVICE M.A.C.P. students, from left, Kimmi Ross, Sarah Ball, Sarah Sanders, and Jenni Odell


elping the broken and hurting members of the Redding community is important to the students, faculty, and staff involved in Simpson University’s M.A.C.P. program. Second-year graduate student Jenni Odell is one of many M.A.C.P. students who are driven by this desire. Jenni volunteered at Shasta County’s Family Court from May 2010 to March 2011. She performed clerical duties and reviewed and participated in home visits for conservatorship cases, which involve dependent adults age 18 and up. “I was so honored to be able to work with the Family Court,” she said. “I learned to never assume, always listen, and how powerful it is to simply convey respect and understanding for another person’s experience.” Jenni recently also gathered donations for the Shasta Family Justice Center, an organization that helps those involved in family violence. She learned about the center’s needs when she was assigned the topic of “crime victim awareness” and one of the heads of the center came and spoke to her class about it. Jenni and some of her classmates dropped off the donations at the center in July. Last December, Jenni and other M.A.C.P. students, staff, and faculty members participated in Northern Valley Catholic Social Service’s “Adopt-aFamily” program. They collected more than 70 gifts for their “adopted” family. “It was very important for me, because as a child, I was the recipient of this kind of Christmas giving, and it is just a blessing to be in a place to pay it forward,” Jenni said. Another way M.A.C.P. students reach out is through clinical fieldwork. Before students are placed in the field, they meet with Dr. Michelle EngblomDeglmann, the program’s clinical training director, to discuss what area of counseling interests them. They then choose an approved organization at which to work. Locally, students are helping at Higher Ground, Redding Rancheria and Shasta Head Start. Simpson also has contracts for future student placements with Alternatives to Violence, Reflections, the Simpson University Counseling Center, the Redding School District and Bridges to Success. — By Elise Wilson ‘08 / Photo by Michael Burke


Fall 2011

TRUSTEE PROFILE Norm Reinhardt Englewood, Colo.

“Again and again I have realized that my life is most fulfilled when I trust in the Lord and remain in the center of His will.”


impson University trustee Norm Reinhardt is an armed forces veteran who is accomplished in the field of technology. He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and served as an officer in the Signal Corps in Augusta, Ga. The skills he learned in the military helped him transition into civilian roles at technology companies where he managed teams developing new technology. For the past 12 years, he has served as a senior director at Cisco Systems in Colorado. Using the skills and experience he has gained over his lifetime, Norm is serving on Simpson’s Development Committee and Foundation Board of Directors. He joined the board of trustees in fall 2010. Norm said he invests his time and resources in Simpson because of the impact Simpson has on lives. “The need to show how relevant the Christian life is within our society is a burden on my heart,” he said. “My desire is that Simpson students and alumni live the ‘abundant life’ that shows how real Christ is in dealing with our very modern-day problems.” Norm and his wife, Brenda, first learned about Simpson when they moved to Southern California in the 1980s and met the Rev. Charles and Elizabeth Dale. “They had a large influence on our lives, and they made sure we knew all about Simpson. They were always ‘on fire’ about Simpson,” said Norm. “It was contagious for me.” Norm would like to encourage donors to keep supporting Simpson financially and prayerfully. “I attended graduation this past April. Just watching the sheer joy of the graduates and the support from their teachers and friends should make each of us want to see Simpson continue to grow,” he said. “Impactful financial giving will keep this going.” The Reinhardts, who have been married for 35 years, live in Colorado and have two adult daughters. We are so grateful for their time and investment. — By Elise Wilson ‘08/Photo by Ryan Belong

Meet all of our trustees online at / 1-888-9-SIMPSON 11



Given: $6.8 million Pledged: $1.3 million Needed to complete the campaign: $1.9 million


President’s travel schedule: Please consider joining President Larry McKinney if he’s traveling to your area in the coming months. This is a wonderful opportunity to hear about God’s work at Simpson University as we celebrate our 90th year. Call Beth Spencer at (530) 226-4602 or email to learn more. •  Sept. 10 - lunch at Sienna Restaurant, El Dorado HIlls, CA •  Oct. 8 - lunch, Seattle / Oct. 9 - preaching at Tacoma C&MA church, Tacoma, WA •  Oct. 22 - lunch, San Diego / Oct. 23 - preaching at Balboa Community Church, San Diego •  Nov. 5 - lunch, Bay Area, CA

Additional campaign giving opportunity includes the $3.5m Music Building (Fine Arts Center) -- $2.9 million still needed.

Amounts still needed: •  Science & Nursing Building ($1.4 million) •  Faculty Development Fund ($137,000) •  Curriculum Development Fund ($315,000) •  Student Scholarship Fund ($46,000)

Help us finish strong with our $10 million Gateway to the Future Campaign during Simpson’s 90th anniversary year. We appreciate your partnership and prayers.

Gateway to the Future Campaign Update

Thank you for your investment in our future!

2211 College View Drive Redding, CA 96003


Simpson University Transform - Fall 2011  

Transform is a quarterly newsletter designed to inform friends and donors of Simpson University about how their gifts are making a differenc...

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