WCU Professor Coordinates National Conference for Foster Grandparents

Dr. Paul Cotten, professor of music and psychology at William Carey University, recently returned from the 2011 National Foster Grandparent Conference held in Little Rock, Ark., October 21-24. This was the 7th year that Dr. Cotten served as program coordinator for the conference, which meets in a different state each year. The Foster Grandparent Program enables adults, ages 55 and up, to become mentors to abused children, troubled teenagers, and children with physical and mental disabilities, as well as those with an illnesses. The National Foster Grandparent Conference serves as a time for Foster Grandparent program directors, assistant directors, coordinators and supervisors, as well as others who wish to promote the Foster Grandparent Program, to come together and share ideas and learn new ways to better assist the children and teens. “It is a time of education and stimulation for the Foster Grandparents who work with disadvantaged or disabled children,” said Dr. Cotten. WCU has been and still is very involved with the national Foster Grandparent program. In addition to Dr. Cotten, two Carey graduates served as workshop directors at the conference: Lori Parker, MT-BC (Music Therapist – Board Certified), class of 1999, and Rachel Everett, MT-BC, class of 2005. Parker, who is currently working on her master’s in counseling psychology at WCU, works at Alexander Milne Home for Women in Laurel, and Everett works for Mississippi State Hospital.

There were over 350 persons in attendance at the conference. For more information about Foster Grandparents, or the National Foster Grandparent Conference, contact Dr. Paul Cotten at or (601) 318-6416.

Dr. Paul Cotten