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By Gabriele Morgan | January 14, 2016 | RSS
When I came in to Bluefield College as a freshman, I was a history major, planning to be a history teacher when I graduated. While I loved history and my World Civilizations class, and teacher licensure track is a popular and rewarding program at Bluefield College, it only took one semester for me to realize that history education was not the field I really wanted to be studying.
A number of my friends at the time were upperclassmen in the psychology department, and they were slowly but surely persuading me toward the major. I took Introduction to Psychology with Dr. Boozer during my first semester at Bluefield, and while it was challenging, it was also one of my favorite classes. I decided that I would give the psychology major a shot.
I am glad, daily, that I did.
I have had the opportunity to take rewarding, interesting classes in the major, such as the Psychology of Leadership, where we studied great leaders and came up with our own philosophy of leadership based on what we learned. In Group Dynamics, another interesting class, we studied the processes by which a group is formed and functions, and our final exam included a role-play with the entire class going through the steps of forming our own make-believe group to highlight what we’d learned throughout the semester.
I have also had the opportunity to join Psi Chi, the National Honor Society in Psychology. Through my membership, I have also had the opportunity to head up a student advocacy and support group on campus called Not Alone, an effort of Psi Chi, which is now in its second semester and growing. The group has organized multiple seminars for convocation credit on issues of mental health and sexual assault awareness, and we are planning more for the upcoming semester.
While the psychology major is not easy (it is a science after all, and there’s quite a bit of math, chemistry, and biology involved!), it is rewarding and provides students with a strong grasp of the major theory as well as the history of the discipline. The major allows for practical application as well, including a class in Advanced Social Research Methods, in which students design and perform their own research study on campus, and internship opportunities with local mental health professionals and organizations.
What really makes the psychology major one that I would recommend to Bluefield College students, however, are the people involved – my fellow majors are passionate about the subject, making classes interesting and discussions engaging. The faculty, Dr. Boozer and Dr. Dillon, care deeply about the well-being and success of their students, and encourage each student to pursue their passions and find their calling. They have laughed with me, cried with me, and rejoiced with me, and I am forever grateful for their constant support.
I am about to enter the second semester of my junior year, in which I will take some of the most challenging, but hopefully also most rewarding, classes in the major so far. Along with doing so, I will begin the downhill trek to close out the journey I began as a freshman. While figuring out what I want to do with the next stage of my life is scary, I know that I have a strong foundation in the psychology department to stand on as I make the tough decisions that are coming.
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