Challenge U

Simpson University offers 25 bachelor's degree programs and master's programs in counseling psychology, organizational leadership, teaching and ministry. We offer traditional undergraduate, accelerated undergraduate, study abroad, graduate, and credentialing programs to meet all your educational needs. Class sizes are small, giving students an opportunity to interact one-on-one with professors in a personal learning environment.

Hear and see what people are saying about their Simpson experience (click below).

  • Justin's Journey

  • Justin's Education

    Simpson University taught me how to teach. Since I was young, I knew I wanted to be a teacher. As I finished up my undergraduate work in History and Social Science, I realized that I had a variety of choices in where I could prepare for my chosen career. I selected Simpson for its reputation in the area of education and the fact that their students did not just get interviewed but hired.

    My time in the program was money well spent. The Simpson University professors were seasoned professionals who knew what it was really like to be in the classroom. Many of my classes featured women and men who not only loved what they were teaching but were working professionals. There is something to be said for having people pouring into you what is working on the front-lines. In addition, many parts of the education world get caught up in the new and trendy but Simpson built into me as an educator the right mix of the tried and true, and those research based innovations that will lead the way in the classroom for years to come. The highlight of the program was the personal touch of Simpson University. In each class you were treated with dignity and respect, having a sense that you belonged. You were a fellow colleague preparing for one of the most rewarding careers in existence.

    Every education program has student teaching built- in but Simpson knows how to do it the right way. I started in the fall and hit the ground running with my master teacher and university supervisor cheering from the sidelines. Simpson has the support you need designed into the process and the feedback coming in that allows you to make changes and learn on the go. My student teaching went so well, I was offered a position the next semester and I haven’t left since!

    After teaching for a few years, I realized I wanted more. I wanted to take my game to the next level as a teaching professional. I began the process of checking out different programs and possibilities and I found myself at Simpson’s door again. I decided to pursue a Master of Arts in Teaching and to attempt to complete my National Board Certification. Most of the program saw me in classes again. One class in particular changed my life, Educational Leadership. Dr. Harris taught me that I could be a leader in the classroom without making the jump to administration. I started to carry myself differently, even changing the way I dressed in the classroom. I believe I have the reputation I have today because of the paradigm shift I experienced.

    My National Boards proved to be 400 hours of dissecting my teaching. Simpson designed my program to have weekly accountability with someone who had done it. Having now completed the process and achieved my certification, I look back on my experience and realize that every skill, technique, and pattern of behavior I use in my profession has come about due to my relationship with Simpson University. I love my calling, my students, and can say I am a credit to my profession due to Simpson University.


  • Dr. Liebscher's News

  • Dr. Liebscher's News

    I grew up in Redding. I know and love this community. And as a Christian psychologist I love being able to serve this community through counseling and teaching.

    I am chair of the Psychology Department at Simpson University. In our program we want to build on your strengths, your talents, your interests – what you are passionate about. We also hope to challenge you to discover new passions and talents that you can use to change your world.

    That is why I am excited about Simpson University’s new Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology program. Simpson has always been committed to investing in our community and instilling this value in our students. Training highly qualified and competent marriage and family therapists is a perfect fit with Simpson’s mission to educate students of character who are prepared to serve and lead.

    For many years Simpson and the Psychology Department have considered offering an
    M.A. in Counseling Psychology. However, within the past few years the interest and demand for this program has grown substantially. We knew that now was the time to help meet this need.

    I am confident that you will find our M.A. in Counseling Psychology to be a quality program, tailor-made for those dedicated to furthering their education and training in the field of counseling and specifically marriage and family therapy.

    What are you waiting for? Now is the time. We’re ready for you!

    Brandy Liebscher, Psy.D.
    Psychology Department Chair
    Associate Professor of Psychology

    Read the press release

    More about the program

  • Doug's Journey

  • Doug's Journey

    I learned so much over the past three years since returning to school and the quality of the education I received at Simpson University was simply amazing. I knew without a shadow of a doubt that God wanted me to finish my degree and the Organizational Leadership major was the perfect fit. He gave me strength and motivation to drive 220 miles each way every other Saturday for 16 months to complete my education at Simpson. On the very first trip up I asked God to confirm this was the right program for me and after Patty Taylor, Dean of Adult Studies, prayed at the beginning of the first class I knew I was in the right place.

    I first went back to school January 2006, not realizing that three short years later I would be done. I started back at Santa Rosa Junior College and got a solid foundation for what lay ahead at Simpson. I had originally planned on moving to Redding to finish in the traditional undergraduate program; however, God redirected me to the ASPIRE program and I am so grateful. 

    The small group communication class I took really helped me to understand why it is so important to get everyone involved in the decision making processes and that the best decisions are made when everyone contributes. I enjoyed how the papers we wrote made the lessons applicable to life instead of just getting the head knowledge and moving on. Each assignment throughout the program built on past assignments and the self-reflection that was necessary to complete the reading and homework enhanced my skill set both in the professional arena and had surprisingly positive results at home too. 

    I never before realized why so many people who get promoted fail. This had happened to me a number of times and what I realized is that I was good at my job but not a good leader. I got promoted to the level of my incompetence. Right now God has me in the life lesson application portion of my education. About halfway through the program I got laid off from my job and three months later God provided a new job, which was absolutely loaded with leadership challenges. I find myself continually going back to the resources from my education at Simpson. One quick example is from the situational leadership book. I have two people who work for me who had to learn a brand new system. They went from being experts to beginners. My job is to walk them through to being experts in the new system. Despite many frustrations and challenges, everyone now believes in the new system and has come on board.

    I believe completing my degree was the foundation for the things that God has in store for me, including going on to get my master’s. The cohort style at Simpson was good preparation because most of master’s degree programs are the same style. While I still don't know exactly what God has in store for me I feel better prepared to take on the challenges thanks to the foundational education I received through the ASPIRE program. 

    I would be sadly remiss if I didn't mention two of the professors from Simpson. Dr. John Burson is an awesome teacher, but more than that he is an incredible human being. His life experiences made the leadership lessons being taught throughout the program have practical application. Dianna Hamar is another gem; her quiet and smooth style allowed us to see a demonstrated model of patience and self-control (two very necessary intangibles in management). Life actions are worth a thousand lectures.

    It took me 21 years after I graduated high school to complete my degree, but I know that Simpson was the perfect choice and I wouldn't have traded the experience for anything. The most important lesson from Simpson is to be a life-long learner and for that I will be forever grateful!