As a 26-year-old with a Bachelor of Psychology degree, who started a Master of Research in Psychology in 2015, it might look a little odd on paper that I now work in the media.
Of course, it isn’t.
People who study psychology enter a diverse range of fields after they graduate. The peers who I studied with have gone on to pursue medicine, clinical psychology, academia, teaching, advertising, and law. Wherever they’ve gone, they’ve been highly valued, because psychology doesn’t just teach you about the brain and human behaviour. It teaches you how to write, how to think critically, how to problem solve, how to research, how to construct an argument, and how to think creatively – skills that ensure success in any professional environment.
My decision to study psychology, however, wasn’t based on these advantages.
I was always going to finish school with an interest in psychology.
I have an auntie and a cousin with intellectual disabilities, a cousin with schizophrenia, and a grandfather who struggles with anxiety and depression. I had seen mental health issues first hand my whole life, and more than anything, I wanted to understand them. Really, really understand them.
What drew me even closer to psychology, and ultimately convinced me to pursue it at university, was the type of understanding it promised.
Psychology is a science. It’s not airy-fairy. It’s not a discipline where you leisurely sit and reflect on issues and ways to solve them. You go out into the world with questions and you find real answers. Psychology is research-based and innovative. It’s exciting. And it’s a challenge.