Students first: Retired professor launches rehabilitation counseling scholarship

Anne Chandler, Ph.D.

Anne Chandler, Ph.D.

The Department of Rehabilitation Counseling in Vir­ginia Commonwealth University’s School of Allied Health Professions prepares students to help those with disabilities find lives with meaning and purpose — two words that, after many years serving on the faculty, resonated with Anne Chandler, Ph.D.

The recent retiree gave $100,000 to establish the Anne L. Chandler Scholarship in Rehabilitation Counseling, creating the department’s largest endowed scholarship.

“I just felt like it was my time to give back,” Chandler said. “The rehab department is an extremely strong department. It’s nationally ranked, and I’m proud of my affiliation with my outstanding colleagues.”

It’s an affiliation that goes back 33 years. After graduating with both her master’s and Ph.D. in rehabilitation counseling from Michigan State University in 1974 and 1978, respectively, Chandler became assistant professor of rehab counseling in a VCU program based in Fishersville, Virginia. She worked there for two years before joining the University of South Carolina. When a position in rehab counseling on campus at VCU opened three years later, she was recruited back.

“Rehabilitation counselors, they’re the people who go into their communities, roll up their sleeves and work with populations who are typically marginalized,” said Amy Armstrong, Ph.D. (Ph.D.’02/E), chair of the Department of Rehabilitation Counseling. “The goal is to enhance the well-being and community inclusion of people with disabilities.”

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