Generous donation from former professor creates Lipovsky Family Clinical Counseling Scholarship at The Citadel

Photo: Dr. Julie Lipovsky, right, accepts Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award from former Citadel provost, Dr. Sam Hines, in 2014.

A former Citadel professor is giving back to the school by establishing a scholarship for psychology students in The Citadel Graduate College. Julie Lipovsky, Ph.D., ABPP, a retired faculty member in the psychology department at The Citadel, has made a philanthropic gift to establish the Lipovsky Family Clinical Counseling Scholarship. In addition to Lipovsky’s contribution, another member of The Citadel community helped provide funding for this scholarship.

“The Citadel is grateful to Dr. Lipovsky for her continued dedication to our mission and our students, and we celebrate the shining example of principled leadership and sacrifice on display with such a generous gift,” said Brian Madison Jones, Ph.D., dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences. “After years of distinguished service in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Dr. Lipovsky continues to give back and inspire others to do the same. As dean, I am grateful for this important and timely gift. More importantly, I am humbled and honored by the faith Dr. Lipovsky has placed in us to continue her extraordinary legacy in teaching our cadets and students and serving the well-being of all people.”

The named scholarship provides financial resources to support students in The Citadel Graduate College’s clinical counseling program, with consideration given to those with the greatest financial need. This scholarship will continue the Department of Psychology’s goal of producing outstanding graduates who excel in the fields of clinical counseling and school psychology. By providing financial assistance in the form of a scholarship, The Citadel, along with the Lipovsky family, is helping remove significant financial barriers. Thanks to a jump start from another member of The Citadel community, the first award of the Lipovsky Family Clinical Counseling Scholarship is expected to be made in the fall of 2024.

“I came to The Citadel in 1993 with the primary goal of strengthening the school’s clinical counseling program. With a strong faculty and community partners, many graduates of the program are able to offer services throughout the area and some go on to complete their doctorates. Students make large sacrifices as they go through the program, with many taking classes in the evening and most students working during the day and on the weekends,” said Lipovsky. “I am privileged to be able to fund an endowed scholarship in my family’s name that will allow The Citadel to recruit and retain students who otherwise would not be able to attend.”

Lipovsky retired from The Citadel in the fall of 2019, after teaching for 26 years. In addition to being a professor of Psychology, Lipovsky served as the first assistant provost for diversity at the college. Her legacy includes developing a Clinical Counseling graduate program and having led the way for formalized LGBTQ support services. Lipovsky also served as the co-chair of the college’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council, and established and directed a National Coalition Building Institute (NCBI) chapter at the college, teaching hundreds of campus constituents the leadership skills needed to work successfully with diverse populations by creating more inclusive environments.

“While her contributions to the Clinical Counseling program will remain her legacy, Dr. Lipovsky’s impact on the Department of Psychology and The Citadel should not be overlooked. During her tenure, she consistently advocated for students and colleagues. Dr. Lipovsky was the grounding force for our department, and she made sure that we kept student-centered engagement at the heart of all of our endeavors and decisions,” said Chip Taylor, Ph.D., head of the Department of Psychology. “For as long as I have known Julie, she has led by example, with humility and empathy. This generous gift is another demonstration of how she continues to blaze trails and set the bar, inspiring each of us to consider opportunities for others before our own. I am so thankful to have her as a colleague, a mentor and a friend.” 

Genelle Sawyer, Ph.D., the current director of the Clinical Counseling program at The Citadel, spoke to Lipovsky’s legacy surrounding the program.

“The Master’s in Psychology Clinical Counseling program at The Citadel owes itself to Dr. Lipovsky. Upon hire, Dr. Lipovsky was tasked with revamping the entire program and curriculum which remains very similar to this day. Her legacy is cemented into all aspects of the program and the many students whom she trained and taught who are providing critical mental health services throughout our community and state. As a leader, Dr. Lipovsky exhibited passion and integrity and dedicated herself each day to doing what is ethical and just. We are incredibly grateful for her generous gift and are humbled by her continuous commitment to the program and the training of mental health counselors,” said Sawyer.

Although Lipovsky’s gift is not directly related to the new Capers Hall, the state-of-the-art building provides specialty spaces that support the Clinical Counseling program, such as the psychology interview rooms.

The Citadel is addressing the nation’s need for principled school psychologists and clinical counselors. As a national leader in psychology education, the college is making a difference in addressing the country’s significant and ever-expanding mental health needs. The Department of Psychology is known for its role in producing outstanding graduates who excel in the fields of clinical counseling and school psychology.

In addition to undergraduate major and minor programs of study, The Citadel’s Department of Psychology offers two graduate level programs. Learn more information by visiting the website.