“One of the great things about the faculty is their openness to new ideas.”
Ed Garrett, 40, is a high school educator, a professional volleyball official, and a coach in Tucson, Arizona. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Physical Education, two Master of Arts degrees – one in Curriculum & Instruction and one in Education – and he is currently pursuing his Doctor of Psychology, Sports and Performance Psychology specialization online from University of the Rockies.
"Sports are a great passion of mine, and part of my livelihood. Having coached and taught for twenty-three years, achieving my doctorate was a natural step. Plus, I had an interest in studying athletes and coaches in greater detail."
Ed came to University of the Rockies' online program because the nearest university with a sports and performance psychology specialization was 1,000 miles away. With a family of six and a full-time job, traveling was simply not an option. "I had heard some great things about University of the Rockies, and after further research I found the university to be strong academically and fully accredited."
Despite his research, Ed admits that he was cautious, and almost skeptical, of the online environment. "I have three degrees, all ground-based, so when I started an online program I was uncertain of its authenticity. After my first course, I felt at home, and I saw that I had my work cut out for me. I quickly found the program to be more demanding than my ground-based programs, which was positive because it legitimized my experience and caused me to seek more from my degree.”
Professionally, Ed would like to incorporate his passion for athletics into a unique approach to family therapy. "I want to develop the Family System Theory into a concept that approaches families like they are small teams. By applying my sports knowledge to family systems I am able to help strengthen the core of a family through athletic terminology and practices. The concept is radical, but the University is encouraging me to pursue it. One of the great things about the faculty is their openness to new ideas. They're very supportive, and are helping me expand on my concepts."
In support of this goal, Ed is currently working on a two-prong research project: "I am studying the effects of divorce on athletes and looking at how parental discipline at home can have an impact on an athlete's expectations." He is also co-authoring a book, “Leadership: Helping Others to Serve.”
After graduation (which should be June 2013), Ed plans to become a performance coach in the disciplines of athletics and families, and in the long-term, he hopes to open a counseling practice called Third String, LLC.