2013 Tillman Scholar
At the age of 17, Staff Sergeant Rae Anne Frey joined the Army National Guard. Having served for 9 years, Rae Anne attributes her motivation and appreciation for life to the military. She says, “the military helped me transform from an impoverished girl in a rural town to a young woman with an appreciation for diversity, a love for country, and a burning desire to keep on improving as a human being. The Army reinforced the values my father taught me and further demonstrated that I was not bound by my past, but with hard work and commitment could attain my dreams.”
During her service, Rae Anne obtained an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and Psychology and moved to the city of Milwaukee to become an urban teacher. In the middle of her second year, she was deployed to Camp Bucca, Iraq. As the highest ranking enlisted female in her company and because of her compassionate personality, many Soldiers came to her for advice and mentorship. Several Soldiers were struggling with mental health and Rae Anne escorted them throughout Iraq to get the mental health services. It was here her future in mental health was born.
While pursuing her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, Rae Anne has completed clinical work in health and trauma psychology, neuropsychology, and spinal cord/brain injury rehabilitation. She has also worked at the University Health Center as a suicide risk-screener, as a peer mentor for Veterans, and has taught trauma counseling courses. She is her campus student representative for the American Psychological Association’s Division of Military Psychology and the treasurer for the Counseling Psychology Student Association.
After earning a Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology, Rae Anne plans to continue her work in trauma psychology helping individuals recover from psychologically and physically traumatic experiences.