Most people use their degree in a direct manner. I, on the other hand, use it in support of my career. I’m an educator, a middle-school classroom teacher.
I originally pursued a bachelor’s degree in psychology in hopes of becoming a psychiatrist. I believed that this was a position that would make me happy, as I personally believe that helping others is more valuable than wealth or prestige. The more I learned more about psychology, the more I noticed that my interests transferred towards a particular specialty area: developmental and cognitive psychology. I became fascinated with Skinner, Pavlov, and Vygotsky. I loved learning about learning, all the while, I learned counseling techniques and about various abnormalities and psychological needs.
As an educator, the training I received because of my degree in psychology has become invaluable as I face numerous counseling, advising, or humanistic situations with my students. Just this week, one of my students was sexually assaulted. Last week, one of my students had to decide which parent to live with because they were going through a nasty divorce. A month ago, I had a student who lost her father to cancer. The list goes on and on.
If I did not have the training and expertise in the area of the human mind that I received during college, I do not know if I would be able to survive the constant trials this job holds.
Additionally, my bachelor’s degree in psychology also helped me to continue my higher education. My bachelor’s degree in psychology also made me a better writer (I lost count of how many APA formatted research papers I wrote during my undergrad). Three years into my teaching career, I decided to go back to school to pursue a master’s in educational administration. I believe that my bachelor’s degree in psychology prepared me well for the extensive amount of research and writing I faced while finishing my master’s degree in educational administration.
Just as before, I believed that I would love to become a school principal or district administrator, yet, the longer I stay in the classroom, the more I love working one-on-one with students. I feel that my original intentions in my pursuit of a bachelor’s degree in psychology were to help change the lives of others, and I know that as a teacher, I do this on a daily basis.