Building of networks for a budding student aiming at a successful career in psychology would involve getting help from everyone around their social and academic life. A vigorous mentorship program from lecturers and tutors would go a long way in understanding how to prepare for their first interview, how to write a good resume and negotiating for the first salary. This would also deem helpful in scouting for potential organizations and institutions to send a curriculum vitae and job application letter. Networking with already practicing psychologists would also be of immense aid in identifying potential areas to establish an initial practice and modes of expansion within the realm of psychologists. Other scientists in the field of medicine may play a vital role in learning how to conduct research and in the end provide a channel to meet more workmates within the field of psychology. Family and friends may also aid in the process of establishing a strong network by referring other colleagues and acquaintances.
Professional organizations such as the American Psychological Association (APA) and the Society for Neuroscience would be the organizations of choice for any student or practicing psychologist (American Psychological Association, 2018a; Society for Neuroscience, 2018). Such organizations provide seminars and year-round conferences that lead to the convergence of other psychologists and affiliated professionals. During such events, opportunities to interact with any willing person is open. Similarly, professional bodies such as APA send out information on registered psychologists and psychology schools through the media or any other public channel for example an official website. This creates an opportunity for any other interested party to access information on you. In addition, such an organization may offer training programs and continuous education that gives the opportunity to expand networks with professionals nationwide and any sponsoring organization.
Student organizations in schools such as psychology clubs are ideal for networking within the academic field (American Psychological Association, 2018b). They open up opportunities for students to interact one-on-one with faculty members and other career panel members within the university. The also allow discussions among students on rising academic questions and provide an opportunity to interact with partnering organization such as The Society for Neuroscience that may offer other academic opportunities such as research. Moreover, practical utilization of the theorical knowledge through opportunities such as community service allow interaction with the community while harnessing any practical skills from other students. Other key networking opportunities within the academic space offered by the student organizations include student seminars and guest speaker talks that broaden the mind of the student while still getting to interact with experienced persons within the field of psychology.
None the less, other networking tools have emerged with the advancement of technology. The internet has made our society a global village and social media has a role to play. Social media gives the psychology student greater opportunity in expanding their network beyond the boundaries of their resident nation. Exchange of ideas from far and wide is made possible through social media accounts that allow formation of online groups that facilitate both academic and social conversations around the field of psychology. Basic social media tools such as Facebook and Twitter allow the opportunity to expand the network of potential clientele and promote virtual communication with other mentors all over the globe. This may be further promoted by video and voice communication channels. It is also now possible to attend distant conferences and receive information on any recent development within the field of psychology as it occurs thorough the aid of social media. This does not leave out the role of professional social media platforms such as Linkedin that offer a substantial network of professionals. Such a network may be expanded especially on social media by utilization of the networks already built by colleagues at work and school.
My college professors in psychology would be my preferred mentors. The reason for their selection is because they would be within easy reach while in school. They would also be able to easily monitor progress both academically and socially. Yet, offer advice accordingly while still developing my career at university level. Besides that, they have diversity in their networks ranging from the academic field to the industrial organization of psychologists. Through their mentorship, I would be able to tailor my academic skills towards the necessary performance capability that is required for the job market. In addition, their mentorship would come in handy in learning of employment opportunities beforehand and aid in navigating through the early stages of my career considering they understand my background. Their expertise in academia would also provide an additional set of skills necessary in personal development. Such auxiliary skills would include research skills that maybe significant in the case of clinical psychology and overall resume outlook.
Examination of my career goals would be necessary by use of milestones set within my career plan. This would involve a continuous personal analysis of skill-sets acquired and whether they fit the job subscribed. The development of any new passions for example religious perspectives and motivating factors such as money would also be used to continuously assess the career goals. In addition, a change in personality, lifestyle standards and social status would also be used as examination material for any change in career goals. Moreover, a continuous update on career opportunities would be necessary during this entire process. This would implore the use of technology tools such as social media for any job advertisements and skills development opportunities that would be necessary for any career change. Traditional print media such as psychology journals would also play a crucial role on updating in career opportunities. The use of word of mouth among close family and friends would be used in case of any whereabouts on better career opportunities.
Due to the vast nature of the field of psychology, a change in career may occur and once that happens, necessary steps would be taken to ensure the right decision is made (American Psychological Association, 2018). The initial step that I would take would be to seek advice and counsel from an experienced psychologist or mentor. This is to ensure that an objective decision is made. This would be followed by conducting a reassessment test to ensure my skills and career of choice match. Then the use of a guides such as university school guides would be used to find a school in case respecialization is required or for job placement options.
American Psychological Association. (2018). American Psychological Association (APA). Retrieved May 21, 2018, from http://www.apa.org/
American Psychological Association. (2018). Changing course: What to do when you realize that your career goals have changed. Retrieved May 21, 2018, from http://www.apa.org/science/about/psa/2011/10/changing-course.aspx
American Psychological Association. (2018). Psychology Clubs. Retrieved May 21, 2018, from http://www.apa.org/education/k12/psych-club.aspx
Society for Neuroscience. (2018). Society for Neuroscience - Home. Retrieved May 21, 2018, from https://www.sfn.org/
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