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Psychology Certificate, Trauma, Veterans

I was once present when a friend, who was a military veteran, suffered extreme stress symptoms in the face of an ‘everyday’ situation. Naturally, I sought to offer immediate comfort and help my friend in this situation but it was also a spur to seek ways to help in a more enduring way and to assist others who suffer post-traumatic stress disorder. A broad interest in psychology developed into a desire to study the effects of traumatic events on individuals and ways of relieving them.

My interest in studying the effects of psychological trauma is not limited to veterans. As a volunteer working with severely disadvantaged children and teenagers, I became aware of that some of them can also be considered to be damaged ‘veterans’ and ‘survivors’ of distressing experiences.  This work also prompted an interest in the ways in which early life events affect the propensity to criminality.  I hope to undertake research in one or more of these areas during my participation in the program.

 I cannot offer work experience in the area of psychology which is why I consider this specific program to be the ‘best fit’ for my situation. However I do hold a degree in a closely related discipline, Criminology, and during my studies I applied statistical techniques that will be relevant within this program.  I also consider that my volunteer work has provided me with a very useful basis on which to build, especially as I hope that helping children and young people will be the focus of my future studies and work. 

My work experience has been in the field of business but I have gained a working knowledge of various research techniques and applied them in financial, markets and sociological settings.  This knowledge and experience will also be relevant and applicable to work during the program. I have demonstrated qualities of diligence and discipline in my working life and learned how to cooperate successfully with others to achieve common ends within demanding timeframes.  The grades and honors obtained in my work towards my Bachelor’s degrees will, I hope, provide some assurance of my work ethic and my further academic potential.  

It is my intention, if accepted, to excel within the program, to obtain the certificate and to use this as a means of pursuing a Ph.D. or Psy.D.  in Clinical Psychology.  It would then be my goal to continue research whilst working in private practice and ultimately to undertake relevant work for a government agency.

I am aware that the program will attract many well qualified applicants. However I am confident that my academic, volunteer and working background, together with my personal qualities and passion for the subject, provide an unusually good ‘fit’ for the program.  I am sure that I shall be able profit significantly from participation and to ‘add value’ to the academic community if accepted. 

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