Answers from the Experts: Psychotherapist and Author
Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology
Master’s Degree in Psychology
Working in the psychology field is more than a career choice, itâ€™s a calling. Psych professionals often encounter people at their worst, but the rewards of helping people outweigh the obstacles. Christina Steinorth, a licensed psychotherapist and author, said she wouldnâ€™t trade her job with anyone else.
Steinorth earned her undergraduate degree from California State University, Northridge, and a masterâ€™s degree from the Phillipsâ€™s Graduate Institute. Steinorth is the author of Cue Cards for Life: Thoughtful Tips for Better Relationships. Her advice has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Cosmopolitan Magazine, The Huffington Post, Womanâ€™s Day, Fox News, websites including WebMD, Askmen, SheKnows, Lifetime Moms, GalTime and Made Men.
Steinorth offered her advice to students considering a degree and career in psychology:
Question: What can students do with a psychology degree, or what are some fields where students can use a degree in psychology beyond the traditional career path?
Steinorth: There are a variety of things you can do with a psychology degree beyond the traditional career path. Thereâ€™s sports psychology where you can help athletes and teams improve their performance. Thereâ€™s forensic psychology where you can work with the court system and help conduct mental status exams and/or lend your expertise in custody evaluations. With an advanced degree you can teach. You can also do corporate psychology, where you help companies increase their productivity and improve their workplace environments. Or, if youâ€™re like me, you can write and have a private practice. I am a self-help author and I also write psychological feature stories for articles for magazines.
Question:What is your best advice that you would pass on to students about the psychology field.
Steinorth offered these tips for student success and building a career in psychology:
- Learn to get comfortable with marketing yourself because itâ€™s a rather large part of the jobâ€”especially if you want to be in private practice. Also, donâ€™t listen to the naysayers who tell you there are â€œtoo many psych majors,â€ or that youâ€™ll â€œnever make any money in psych.â€ Carve your own path and set your own goals. Youâ€™re responsible for your own success so donâ€™t let others tell you what you can and canâ€™t do.
- Network, network, network. Itâ€™s always good to have a group of peers to discuss difficult cases with. And who knows? Maybe one of your connections will be able to help you find a job at some point.
- Keep up on the current research–learning doesnâ€™t stop when you leave school.<?li>
Question: What classroom lessons stayed with you?
Steinorth: I think the most important classroom lesson that stayed with me is that you get better doing therapy the more years you do itâ€”itâ€™s completely true. Book and classroom learning are great, but they are not a replacement for real life experience. Thereâ€™s an art to therapy and the more you practice it, the better you get.
Steinorth: Donâ€™t be afraid to ask your instructors job related questionsâ€”professors on the whole like to interact and help their students and can often be a very valuable resource of information.
Follow Elise Rambaud Marrion on Twitter @elisermarrion.