Student Experience: Jumping In

Getting involved in student life on campus is a quick way to feel at home at MSP. Brittany King (PsyD 1) shares her experience of settling into the doctoral program below.

I was one of the few students coming into the PsyD program this year who didn’t attend MSP for my Master’s. Thinking about this, I will admit, I did have concerns about how much I would have to “catch up” on, or how much I would need to know beforehand.

The first few weeks of the program I struggled with trying to find my balance in the program, and evaluating my “fit” to be in this program.

I think most of us have initial doubt when starting something new, whether that be a new job, a new program, or a new idea. Doubt comes and goes, which can be humbling, but the feeling I was feeling wasn’t humbling. It wasn’t until I was able to talk to one of the PsyD 3 students, who told me “well, if you weren’t supposed to be here trust me, you wouldn’t be.” Her conversation assured me that despite what I was feeling, I have worked hard for this moment, so I should enjoy the ride.

The cohort dynamic is extremely important, regardless of what school you attend. The relationship you create with your cohort can either make or break your academic experience.

I am extremely grateful for this year’s cohort because of the support and encouragement they share with me. It’s a comforting feeling when your cohort wants to see you strive. The cohort relationship is so important and vital because these are some of the few people who know exactly what you are going through in the program. They can identify with you better than anyone else.

Getting adjusted to a new school, new environment, and a new cohort I wanted to try and be as involved as possible. That includes jumping in on research opportunities and becoming a Student Ambassador. Being a part of the Student Ambassador program gave me the opportunity to not only help with events on campus, but also to learn more about the people I sit next to during class. I am really big on gaining perspectives from those I interact with, and because I was still new to the school, this was one way that helped me branch out.

MSP’s humanistic foundation also gives me the space and freedom to figure out more about myself. I am more aware of behaviors and understanding these behaviors, while also working on and exploring my integrative theory.

One of the things I would share with anyone considering the program, is to go for it. If I would have passed on this opportunity, I wouldn’t have met the people that I know now and wouldn’t have gained the opportunities and experience I am currently involved in.

Brittany KingBrittany King is in her first year of the doctoral program at MSP. Read more about Brittany in her PsyD Student Ambassador profile here.