E-Bully E-Bulletin
Calendar Latest news News Archive www.mccc.edu

Alum Laura Rose Is Residential Counselor
Helping Patients Better Their Lives


West Windsor, N.J. - Students come to Mercer County Community College for a wide variety of reasons. For Laura Rose, '08 (A.A., Humanities and Social Science), it was to make a fresh start for a new career in psychology.

Arriving in Princeton in 2004 with a background in real estate, Rose, then Laura Soltesz, first came to New Jersey from Greeneville, TN, when she married a Princeton University Ph.D. candidate. Unsatisfied with the real estate market in the Northeast, she decided it was time to go back to school and pursue a career for which she had more passion.

"It was just time for a life change," Rose said.

She chose Mercer because it was the best option to fit her schedule and financial needs. "When I came to Princeton, Mercer was recommended to me as a great starting point," said Rose, adding that she took a job as a nanny while in school. Through her nanny job, she was able to combine work with her studies by conducting an eight month developmental profile on the toddler she was watching.

Rose excelled at Mercer. She was a member of the Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society, as well as the Alpha Mu Gamma National Collegiate Foreign Language Honor Society for excellence in Spanish. She was also the 2008 recipient of the Phillip Schein Memorial Scholarship for academic excellence.

Laura Rose '08

She attributes much of her success at Mercer to one of her English professors, Dr. Ed Carmien. "He is fantastic. His ability to engage the students and inspire them to think is truly a beautiful thing," Rose said. "He encourages and fosters learning in an extremely open-minded way. He doesn't focus on the negatives of his students, but on their strengths. He is an asset to his students and to Mercer."

After graduating with her associate degree, Rose went on to earn her bachelor's degree in Psychology with a minor in Critical Sexuality Studies from Rutgers University. While at Rutgers she served as a research assistant for six different studies on social attitude formation and reaction with regard to racisim, sexism and gender role performance. She graduated from the college in 2010, magna cum laude.

Rose was hired straight from Rutgers to work as a residential counselor at the Carrier Clinic, a mental and behavioral health treatment center in Belle Mead, where she assisted 13- to 18-year-old adolescent females in a psychiatric community residence program called the Sunflower Lodge.

After 18 months she moved on to her current position at the Children's Home in Mount Holly, a non-profit organization that provides special education, residential and emergency shelter services. There she works exclusively with troubled and at-risk adolescent males.

Now that she has had a few years in the field, Rose says that her real-life experience has added significantly to her textbook learning. "If you go into a career in psychology, be prepared for what's coming. It can be very stressful at times. You don't really think about that when you first decide to pursue psychology, but when the textbook comes to life, it's very surprising."

She adds that students considering the field must have the heart, the patience and the passion for serving others. "At the end of the day, it's about helping people live the fullest and best life possible for them," Rose observes. "We want them to become healthy, well-adjusted, functioning and effective members of society. If not while under my care, hopefully they will carry the tools I've offered and utilize them when they're able."

Rose is currently researching schools where she can pursue her master's degree this fall. She plans to eventually earn her doctoral degree in clinical psychology.

More Alumni Success Stories

Return to Alumni & Friends

Return to Home Page