Doctor of Psychology, Clinical specialization
Miriam Scott, of Colorado Springs, CO, earned her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Columbia College and her Master of Arts in Psychology from University of the Rockies. At 36, she’s now pursuing her doctorate degree, also at University of the Rockies. She started her internship in August 2011 at the Rockies Counseling Center and is due to graduate in December 2012. “Life is good,” says Miriam. “I find that I am learning just as much from the practicum students as they are probably learning from me. I love being able to interact with the student therapists and pass on to them some of what I have learned through this process.”
Pursuing her graduate degree was a natural step for Miriam because of her interest in psychology. “Once I made the decision to finish my Bachelor’s, I knew I would need at least a Master’s to really do anything in the field. Choosing University of the Rockies felt just as natural. I started looking into the University back in 2007, when it was still called Colorado School of Professional Psychology. I loved how intimate the school appeared to be (and has proven to be!), and that the school had a practicum site. The versatility of being able to take one class during the week and one on the weekend was also key, because I work full-time.”
Over the last three years, Miriam has found her research interests lean toward Axis II. “In layman’s terms, this means personality concerns - those life-long views that we all hold and that, for some, are just a little maladaptive. After graduation, I plan to apply this interest to the military community. I’m interested in Forensic Psychology, as well, so I might look for work at a state hospital or rehabilitation center.”
When we last spoke to her, Miriam let us know she is involved in an ongoing international research project looking at the meaning students in China and the US assign to significant life events, and also investigating what kinds of people utilize community counseling centers. “I also participated in a pilot study that was presented as a poster at the 2010 APA conference in San Diego. On this project, we looked at the additional benefits of participating in therapy beyond symptom reduction. We specifically considered the differences between a cognitive or existential approach to therapy, and then we included a piece on organizational leadership that compared the benefits to employees when a manager used a transformational or transactional leadership style.” Beyond that, Miriam is focusing on her dissertation, which is a comparative study between emotional intelligence and personality, preparing for her Examination for Professional Practice of Psychology exam (EPPP), and looking for a postdoctoral position to continue to accrue hours for licensure.
“When I think about my time at University of the Rockies, I am amazed at the growth process, not only individually, but also as a group. I believe this growth is made possible in part because of the support from the professors. It has been great to work with professionals who actually care about me as a student and as a person, and who aren’t afraid to show it. It’s the same with my fellow students – without my cohort I don’t think I would have survived! The support system that appears to be just naturally in place is a wonder to behold and even better to be a part of. Like those who came before me, I am now striving to pass on the wisdom and knowledge I have gained through this journey.”
Miriam’s advice to other potential students is simple: “This is your education. You will get out of it what you put into it. The University will do everything to give you the experience you are after, but you have to work with them to make it happen!”