Graduate Counseling – About Us

Program Mission

The mission of the Southern Nazarene University Graduate Programs in Counseling is to educate and prepare students to assist diverse populations as competent, ethical, and self-reflective practitioners. As a university rooted in the Wesleyan theological tradition, we shape our students to value hospitality, curiosity, and compassion, emphasize a relational-developmental model, and promote service and social justice.

Group of Psychology Faculty and Staff

Department of Psychology and Counseling Faculty and Staff

Chair, Department of Psychology and Counseling

Contact Information
E-mail: rwright@mail.snu.edu
Office Location: Don Beaver Science Building, Fourth Floor, Room 437
Office Number: (405) 491-6395

Education:

  • Ph.D. – Clinical Psychology, Graduate School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, 1991-1997.
  • M.A. – Theology, Graduate School of Theology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, 1991-1995.                                                                                                
  • M.A. – Psychology, Graduate School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, 1991-1993.
  • B.A. – Psychology & Theology (Magna Cum Laude), Mount Vernon Nazarene College, Mount Vernon, Ohio, 1987-1991.

Dr. Ron Wright has had a lifelong interest in the relationship between theology and psychology and his educational journey reflects that interest. After graduating from Mount Vernon Nazarene College as a psychology major, he attended Fuller Theological Seminary where he received a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and a M.A. in Theology. Dr. Wright has taught in the psychology departments at Southern Nazarene University (1997 – 2002) and Mount Vernon Nazarene University (2002 – 2010). He also taught for a semester as a Fulbright Scholar in the Master’s Program of Psychotherapy and Psychodiagnostics at the University of Bucharest, Romania. He returned to Southern Nazarene University in 2010 as the Chair of the Department of Psychology and Counseling.

Ron has been licensed as a psychologist in the states of Oklahoma and Ohio and has maintained a private practice for much of his career. He is married to Suzanne and they live in Bethany with their two children, Emma and Zane. When not at work or reading, one can probably find Ron and Suzanne at a practice or game as Emma and Zane are active in playing softball, baseball, and basketball. In those rare moments in which Ron does not have work or family obligations, he enjoys chasing a small white ball around a golf course.

Dr. Wright’s research interests include the integration of relational psychoanalysis and Wesleyan theology, the philosophical and moral assumptions embedded within psychological theory and how those relate to theological perspectives, the relationship of attachment states of mind to spiritual development (including image of God), and mixed methods (qualitative and quantitative) approaches for examining cross-cultural perspectives on psychological well-being.

Courses taught:

Graduate courses:

  • PSY6293 – Philosophy of Interpersonal Relationships

Undergraduate courses:

  • PSY1113 – General Psychology I
  • PSY1212 – General Psychology II
  • PSY4113 – Psychology of Religion
  • PSY4153 – Psychology of Personality
  • PSY4373 – Special Studies in Psychology – Cross-Cultural Research: Psychological Well-Being in Costa Rica

Current Scholarship

In 2012, Ron presented Tradition shaped integration: The past and future of SSPWT at the Annual conference for the Society for the Study of Psychology and Wesleyan Theology in Nashville, Tennessee with co-authors Dr. Paul Jones and Dr. Brad Strawn.  Ron was also a committee member for Scott Secor’s poster presentation at the annual conference of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology in San Diego, California. The title of that presentation was Relational predictors of resiliency following trauma.  Ron has been published numerous times, with his latest article “If my hand hurts, he feels my pain, too”: Attachment States of Mind and Conceptualizations of Friendship Among Street Children in Bucharest being published in the Romanian Journal of Experiential Psychotherapy in 2010.  Also in 2010, Ron was co-editor, along with Dr. Brad Strawn and M. Kathryn Armistead, of the book, Wesleyan theology and social science: The dance of practical divinity and discovery.  Ron published another articles in 2010 entitled Grief, Hope and Prophetic Imagination: Psychoanalysis and Christian Tradition Dialogue in the Journal of Psychology and Christianity with co-author Dr. Brad Strawn.

Director, Graduate Programs in Counseling, Associate Professor

Contact Information
E-mail: pajones@snu.edu
Office Location: Don Beaver Science Building, Fourth Floor, Room 429
Office Number: (405) 491-6656

Education:

  • Ph.D. – Clinical Psychology, Graduate School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, Sept. 2001 – Aug. 2007.
  • M.A. – Theology, Graduate School of Theology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, Sept. 2001 – June 2006.                                                                                             
  • M.A. – Psychology, Graduate School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary, Pasadena, California, Sept. 2001 – June 2003.
  • B.S. – Psychology & Theology (Summa cum laude), Southern Nazarene University, Bethany, Oklahoma, Aug. 1997 – May 2001.
  • Pew Younger Scholar’s Program, Seminar in Psychology, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Indiana, May 2000 – June 2000.

Dr. Paul Jones became Director of the Graduate Program in Counseling in 2012 and began teaching at SNU in 2008. Prior to joining the SNU faculty, he completed his doctoral internship with the Oklahoma Health Consortium and a postdoctoral fellowship with University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center Student Counseling Services. He is licensed in the state of Oklahoma as a Health Service Psychologist and served for four years as the Executive Director of the Life Counseling Center, SNU’s community mental health center and training clinic for the Graduate Programs in Counseling. When wasting time, Paul enjoys videos games, watching sports with passion, and getting scrappy with other faculty and staff members on the basketball court. He and his wife, Kim, live in Bethany with their son, Cameron.

Dr. Jones’s research interests include the integration of psychology, philosophy, and Wesleyan theology. He is particularly interested in the role of ethics and virtue theory as it relates to clinical practice. In addition, he is interested in the theory and application of relational psychoanalysis and attachment theory.

Courses taught:
   Graduate courses:

  • PSY5313 – Lifespan Development
  • PSY5143 – Psychological and Family Assessment
  • PSY6293 – Philosophy of Interpersonal Relationships
  • PSY5263 – Psychopathology
  • PSY6333 – Theories of Counseling

   Undergraduate courses:

  • PSY4113 – Psychology of Religion
  • PSY4213 – Principles of Counseling
  • PSY4273 – History and Systems of Psychology

In addition to several publications and conference presentations with SNU students andfaculty, Dr. Jones is the author of Traditioning as Integration: Rationally Justifying the Practice of Relational Psychoanalysis in Social Trinitarian Theology.  In addition, he a contributing author in Christianity &Psychoanalysis: A New Conversation.

Assistant Professor, Director Graduate/Undergraduate Research

Contact Information:
E-mail: sdrabens@snu.edu
Office Location: Don Beaver Science Building, Fourth Floor, Room 425
Office Number: (405) 491-6374


Education:

  • PhD – Counseling Psychology, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, August 2009 – December 2013.
  • Certificate — Interdisciplinary Training Program in Child Abuse and Neglect, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Program, Oklahoma City, OK, August 2011 – May 2012
  • MS – Counseling Psychology, Southern Nazarene University, Bethany, OK, September 2001 – December 2003
  • BS – Chemistry, Southern Nazarene University, Bethany, Oklahoma, August 1995 – May 2000.

Dr. Scott Drabenstot joined the faculty of SNU in Fall 2013.  Scott completed his pre-doctoral internship with the Northeastern Oklahoma Pre-doctoral Internship in Psychology (NOPIP) at the Indian Health Care Resource Center in Tulsa, OK and his doctoral training at the University of Oklahoma.  Prior to completing his doctoral program, he worked as a Licensed Professional Counselor in community mental health agencies in the Oklahoma City metro area.  Scott enjoys playing trumpet, being outdoors, and spending time with his family.  Scott and his wife, Kym, live in Mustang with their three children.

Scott’s research interests include the biopsychology of mental illness, child and family psychology, and positive psychology child development, and positive psychology.

Current Scholarship and Service

 Scott Drabenstot shares his love of research by serving as a McNair Scholar faculty mentor and overseeing both undergraduate and graduate theses.  He recently contributed to a book chapter that should be published next year.  He also serves as a member of the Oklahoma County Indian Child Welfare Act Post-Adjudication Review Board (ICWA-PARB).

Assistant Professor & Assistant Director of Research

Contact Information
 E-mail: anharper@snu.edu
 Office Location: Don Beaver Science Building, Fourth Floor, Room 429
 Office Number: 405-491-6352

Education:

  • Ph.D. – Clinical Psychology, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio, 2010-2015.
  • M.A. – Clinical Psychology, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio, 2010-2012.
  • B.A. – Psychology & Sociology (Summa Cum Laude), Mount Vernon Nazarene University, Mount Vernon, Ohio, 2006-2009.

Dr. Anna Harper joined the faculty of SNU in Fall 2015, after completing her doctoral psychology internship with the University Counseling Center at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan. During her doctoral training, she provided psychotherapy services to university students and community members of all ages, and she taught undergraduate courses at Bowling Green State University (Bowling Green, Ohio), Owens Community College (Toledo, Ohio) and Grand Valley State University (Allendale, Michigan).

Anna has served as the Society for the Study of Psychology and Wesleyan Theology (SSPWT) Section Chair for the Wesleyan Theological Society since 2015. Previously, she served Division 36 of the American Psychological Association (Society for the Psychology of Religion and Spirituality) as graduate student co-representative from 2013-2015. At SNU, Anna is a faculty mentor for the Freshman Honors Learning Community and for SNU’s chapter of Psi Chi, The International Honor Society in Psychology.

Anna’s research and clinical interests include virtue development, relational spirituality (i.e., intersections of interpersonal relationships and religion/spirituality), couples and family relationships, emerging adulthood, stress-related growth and decline, spiritually-integrated psychotherapy, and Acceptance & Commitment Therapy (ACT). Anna’s Love Lab research group investigates the development of love as a human virtue and implications of compassionate love for human flourishing. Anna has also explored religious/spiritual appraisals of non-marital romantic breakups among college students, as well as post-breakup coping methods, adjustment, and growth. She has presented research at a variety of conferences, including the Interdisciplinary Conference on Health, Religion, & Spirituality, meetings of the Society for the Study of Psychology and Wesleyan Theology, and meetings of the American Psychological Association. She has published findings from her Master’s thesis and doctoral dissertation in the Journal of Psychology and Christianity and in Spirituality in Clinical Practice. Her book chapter entitled Trauma, Religion, and Spirituality: Pathways to Healing, was published by Springer in 2015.

Courses taught:

Undergraduate courses:

  • PSY 1113 – General Psychology
  • HON 1113 – General Psychology – Honors Learning Community
  • PSY 2173/ED 2173 – Developmental Psychology across the Lifespan
  • PSY 3113 – Social Psychology
  • PSY 3193 – Learning and Cognition
  • STAT 3243 – Computer-Packaged Statistics
  • PSY 4063/PSY 4373 – Special Topics: Psychology of Human Flourishing
  • PSY 4263 – Techniques of Counseling

Graduate courses:

  • PSY 5313 – Lifespan Development

Director of Clinical Training, Graduate Programs in Counseling 

Contact Information
E-mail: ssecor@snu.edu
Office Location: Don Beaver Science Building, Fourth Floor, Room 427
Office Number: (405) 717-6269

Education:

  • Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology – University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, 2014-2018.
  • M.S. – Counseling Psychology, Southern Nazarene University, Bethany, Oklahoma, 2010-2011.
  • M.A. – Curriculum and Instruction, Southern Nazarene University, Bethany, Oklahoma, 1998-1999. 
  • B.S. – Organizational Communications, Southern Nazarene University, Bethany, Oklahoma, 1994-1998.

Licenses Held:

  • Licensed Professional Counselor, State of Oklahoma

Scott Secor became Assistant Director of the Graduate Program in Counseling in 2012, but began teaching at SNU in 2010. Prior to joining the Department of Psychology and Counseling, Scott completed two master’s degree: one in counseling psychology and the other in curriculum and instruction.  Scott is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the State of Oklahoma after completing his candidacy at Renew Counseling Center.  As an intern, Scott did his practicum at Life Counseling Center. Scott graduated from the University of Oklahoma in 2018 with his Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology.  In his free time, Scott enjoys swimming and hanging out with his wife and daughter.  He and his wife, Brooke, live in Yukon with their daughter Rylee.  

Scott’s research interests include resiliency to trauma and sexual assault on college campuses.  Scott was a part of research team that examined sexual assault on college campuses and how to prevent growing rates of sexual assault on college campuses. Scott’s dissertation examined the effects of sexual assault on PTSD and how the types of responses received during the sexual reporting process exacerbate PTSD symptomology. Scott completed his thesis on Relational Predictors of Resiliency Following Trauma, which finished 1st at the Oklahoma Psychological Societies annual graduate competition. He also presented his thesis at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology’s annual national conference in San Diego.  Scott’s master’s thesis was accepted for publication in the Journal for Relationships Research in April of 2017. 

Clinically, Scott practices from a integrative theoretical perspective that is informed by relational-cultural, feminist, humanistic, interpersonal, and psychodynamic perspectives.  Scott has worked clinically in community mental health, private practice, university counseling centers, and recently completed his pre-doctoral internship at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and Oklahoma City V.A. Medical Center.  

Courses taught:

Graduate courses:

  • PSY 5333 – Introduction to Counseling Techniques
  • PSY 6123 – Theories and Techniques of Counseling II
  • PSY 5153 – Psychological and Career Assessment
  • PSY 6403 – Neuropsychopharmacology
  • PSY 6196 – Internship
  • PSY 6243 – Marriage and Family Therapy
  • PSY 5223 – Career Counseling and Assessment Techniques

Undergraduate courses:

  • PSY1113 – General Psychology I
  • PSY1131 – General Psychology Laboratory
  • PSY 4263 – Techniques of Counseling
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