A legacy of success is what Clayton State
graduate student Christie Wooten is in the midst of accomplishing. If Clayton State University helped her dreams be made real in 2008, the year she received her Bachelors of Science in Psychology and Human Services, then Wooten is assured Clayton State will continue to make her dreams real throughout the completion of her master’s degree.
Wooten is the program services coordinator at Southern Crescent Sexual Assault Center (SCSAC) and has served the position since February 2012. Immediately after her graduation in 2008, she started working at SCSAC as a crisis responder.
“The courses and professors at Clayton State that prepared me for crisis intervention and working with culturally diverse clients have made the most impact in my career,” states Wooten.
Wooten quickly moved up the ladder at SCSAC, becoming the community outreach coordinator in 2009, then prevention educator in 2010. From there, she became the mentor program assistant coordinator at Forest Park Street School. In 2012, while serving as SCSAC’s program services coordinator, she worked 10 hours a week as the graduate research assistant for the Department of Psychology, and later held the position of training coordinator at Georgia Network to End Sexual Assault until February 2013.
“Providing prevention programming has become my passion. I love working with teenagers, talking with them, and providing them with techniques and coping methods to navigate through the often confusing years of adolescence,” states Wooten. She claims that she owes her love for education and prevention programming to Dr. Eric Bridges who, “has been my mentor for six years, assisting me with my professional development and always providing me with encouragement.”
In the last semester of Wooten’s undergrad program, she began begging Psychology Department Chair Dr. Donna McCarty to start a graduate program. She claims that when she heard of the program’s announcement, she was hesitant to apply because she had begun working full-time and did not want to stifle her career. After reading the description of the program, however, she immediately knew it was the appropriate fit for her career goals of working with youth.
“All of the psychology department staff are responsible for molding me into the professional that I have become. I could not have asked for better undergraduate professors,” praises Wooten. She knows she made the right decision in returning to Clayton State for her master’s because, “the same professors that had such an impact on me during my undergrad have continued to mold me and enhance my growth today.”
After completing her master’s thesis and graduating on May 4, 2013, Wooten dreams of attaining her Ph.D. in either public health or community psychology. She is interested in creating evidence-based curriculums regarding sexual risk behaviors reduction and sexual violence prevention for under privileged and at-risk youth.
“Ultimately I would like to run a juvenile detention center, planning and implementing educational programming for effective and efficient rehabilitation,” states Wooten.