James Madison University

Joann H. Grayson Outstanding Field Placement Award

This award is given to students who distinguish themselves on the basis of their commitment, use of psychological theory, and professional performance.

2018 Award Recipient


Caleigh Strother

PHOTO:Caleigh Strother
  • Completed her 150-hour Field Placement with the Commonwealth Center for Children and Adolescents (CCCA), a short-term psychiatric hospital in Staunton, VA
  • Worked under the supervision of Elizabeth Candido and Kandice Brown in the Recreation Therapy Department, creating and facilitating therapeutic activities for the purpose of improving self-esteem, coping, and social skills among patients
  • Created a partnership with the JMU School of Music to bring JMU music student volunteers to CCCA to facilitate music therapy with patients
  • Wrote and was awarded a JMU Student Engagement Grant to support this collaborative effort
  • Was invited to present about her collaborative project to the JMU Board of Visitors

2017 Award Recipient


Madeline Palkovitz

PHOTO:Madeline Palkovitz
  • Completed a 150+ hour Field Placement experience as a Victim Advocate at the Victim Witness Program in Harrisonburg, VA, a non-profilt organization that aims to reduce any trauma or confusion that the victim/witness of a crime may experience while involved in criminal justice proceedings.
  • Attended Juvenile and Domestic Relations court and observed first appearances, protective order hearings, and trials.
  • Met with victims to ascertain the details of the situation that occurred to make them seek a protective order before they went in front of the judge. Prepared victims for what to expect in court and accompanied victims to court to help alleviate their anxiety.
  • Completed a research paper on the multi-faceted impact of domestic violence on a victim and provided recommendations for how to raise awareness and provide education to victims and young women to reduce and avoid victimization.
  • Because Young women, such as college students, are frequently targets of intimate partner violence, she raised awareness and aimed to educate members of her sorority through a discussion on Intimate Partner Violence.
  • The goals of the discussion were to: 1) target an at-risk population, 2) encourage individuals to be aware that victim-blaming exists and ensure that they do not contribute to it, 3) challenge members of society to be an empathetic support system to victims, 4) create awareness of additional acts of victimization individuals of intimate partner violence experience, and 5) give members of society knowledge to avoid or escape abusive relationships before they get to a point where additional victimization occurs.