“One of the great things about the faculty is their openness to new ideas.”
Professional volleyball official and former high school educator Dr. Ed Garrett of Tucson, AZ has used his University of the Rockies degree to help secure a position as Assistant Professor of Sports Administration at Belhaven University, where he also provides the athletic department with sports psychology needs. Ed holds a Bachelor of Arts in Physical Education, two Master of Arts degrees – one in Curriculum & Instruction and one in Education – and his Doctor of Psychology, Sport and Performance Psychology specialization, which he earned at the age of 42 from University of the Rockies. We last spoke to him while he was still enrolled.
"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 admitted 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.”
While a student, Ed explored the idea of incorporating 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 worked on a two-prong research project while at University of the Rockies: "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 was also co-authoring a book, “Leadership: Helping Others to Serve.”
Somehow, Ed also had time to start a private sports psychology counseling practice called Third String, LLC, but has taken a hiatus from that while getting acclimated to his new teaching position. We look forward to following Ed’s additional successes as a University of the Rockies alumnus!