UMSL education professor Mark Pope received the inaugural Diversity Initiative Award from the National Career Development Association.

Mark Pope has worked tirelessly to promote multicultural awareness and social justice for all individuals. So it’s no surprise he has received the inaugural Diversity Initiative Award from the National Career Development Association. He was honored for his leadership of cultural diversity and social justice issues in career counseling and career development over his lifetime.

As the first recipient of this important professional award, Pope, chair and professor of counseling and family therapy in the College of Education at the University of Missouri–St. Louis, represents the prototype of the career counselor for modern times.

“This is a very significant award for me both professionally and personally, as it reflects what I have devoted my life to,” Pope said. “It was a huge honor to be the first recipient of such a special award.”

Pope has advocated for more than 35 years, not only for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning individuals, but he has also been a strong advocate and change agent for all members of under-represented and culturally marginalized groups in American society.

A resident of University City, Mo., he is a recognized international expert in various aspects of counseling with sexual minorities, including gay and lesbian career development; violence in schools against sexual minority youths; sexual behavior in aging gay men; and psychological testing with sexual minorities.

Pope is the author of more than 100 articles, books, book chapters and other publications dealing with multicultural awareness and career development. He has served on numerous organizations and committees whose specific interests involve multiculturalism and career concerns.

He is a fellow of the National Career Development Association, American Counseling Association, American Psychological Association, Society of Counseling Psychology (Division 17), Society for the Psychological Study of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Issues (Division 44), and Society for the Psychological Study of Ethnic Minority Issues (Division 45). He also previously served as the editor of The Career Development Quarterly, the foremost professional journal in career counseling and career development.

The National Career Development Association is composed of career counselors, career development facilitators, vocational psychologists and other career development professionals and is the recognized leader in developing standards for the career development profession, for the provision of career counseling programs and services, and for the evaluation of career information materials. Founded in 1913 as the National Vocational Guidance Association, it became the National Career Development Association in 1985. It has grown to more than 5,000 members in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and 20 foreign countries on every inhabited continent.

Jen Hatton

Jen Hatton

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