What was your major and minor at UW-Green Bay, and in what year did you graduate? Do you have a graduate degree (MS/PhD), and, if so, in what field? I double majored in Human Development and Psychology and graduated in 2010. I am currently attending a graduate program for school counseling at Lakeland College (Green Bay Campus).
What is your current job and how would you briefly describe what you do? Right now I work as a childcare provider for the YMCA, but will graduate from my counseling program in December 2013 then will begin looking for a school counselor job.
How do you use your human development and/or psychology education in your current job? If you do not, please explain. In my current job I use my education to help me interact with children and parents. My education has also helped me to understand children and the ways they develop. I definitely felt prepared for my graduate program after majoring in human development and psychology. I also learned many skills at UWGB that helped me to build confidence in writing papers, performing research, and achieving success in college.
Was this your first job upon graduation? If not, what was your first job?
When I graduated from UWGB I worked as a childcare coordinator for the YMCA. I recently stepped down from this position in order to focus on my school counseling practicum.
What kinds of things did you do as a student (e.g., specific classes taken, independent studies, working with your advisor or career services, volunteer work, part-time jobs) that you believe made you successful in your job search and/or competitive as a job candidate? Is there anything you didn’t do, that you wish you had done? Throughout college I worked for the YMCA doing childcare. Working in childcare helped me gain experience with children so I was able to decide what counseling track I wanted to pursue. I took as many human development and psychology classes as I could, and made sure to take all the counseling classes that were offered. I met with my advisor frequently to discuss classes, my career track, and my plans after graduation. I also frequently talked with professors about the possibility of going to graduate school. Professors were always willing to share their experience or any information they had about graduate programs. Networking with professors and other human development and psychology students definitely helped me to achieve success at UWGB. Looking back I wish I would have gotten involved more. If I could do things over I would consider being a TA for a class. I would also consider an independent study, and getting involved in organizations on campus that are connected to human development and psychology.
What advice would you give to current UW-Green Bay human development and/or psychology students with regard to making the most of their education and making themselves maximally competitive for employment post-graduation?
I would say the biggest thing is to network with professors and other students. When applying for graduate school most programs require letters or recommendation. Building relationships with others helps with this process because professors that know you personally may be more inclined to provide a letter of recommendation. I would also suggest getting involved in organizations and activities that promote human development and psychology on campus. Ask questions and get involved in class. Getting involved provides you with a better learning experience. I would also suggest planning for the future. I decided halfway through my senior year that I wanted to attend grad school. Deciding this late was difficult because I felt stressed and overwhelmed at times. Start looking at job or school options early, and have a plan if something doesn't work out. Use your time at UWGB to gain great experience and knowledge that will help you when looking for a job or graduate program.