Scams, Scholarships, and Happiness Levels

It’s hard to write on a blog that you’ve neglected for a month (ahem, Vera), and while my life has not changed dramatically, my happiness has. Yesterday, while watching fireworks, my mom casually asked what my happiness level was. This is a normal question if your mom is a psychologist. I turned to look at her from my post on the roof, where we balanced precariously to watch fireworks. “I’m on a rollercoaster that only goes up!” (This is an Augustus Waters quote and also the perfect way to describe my happiness lately).

“I’m on a rollercoaster that only goes up!”

The reason is no mystery. I am an extremely social person, and lately, I’ve had long phone conversations with friends at least twice a week. My friends and I also text a lot, which makes me feel wonderfully connected. At the risk of bragging, my life has felt like a coming of age movie for teenagers, and I guess I was busy living out the memories instead of writing about them.

I had some really good news come my way. Two of the scholarships that I spent a lot of time in March applying for were scholarships that I ended up getting. PsyD programs are not cheap, but they are so worth it if you want to pursue clinical psychology (neuropsych in my case), and I felt really lucky. However, don’t worry, guys, I also got a healthy dose of reality.

Who wants to hear about how I got scammed? I got a job during quarantine, or so I thought. It was supposed to be a neurofeedback position, and I was excited about it. I’m studying neuropsychology in graduate school and am certain that I want to work part-time while getting my doctorate. Neurofeedback seemed like the right fit.

Well, training costs $2,500. Mic drop (or should I say wallet drop?). I was frustrated because even though I asked three times via email and once after I got the offer letter, no one told explicitly told me the cost of materials and training. Finally, after the person in charge kept dodging the question, I emailed one of the other people in the company, asking for the fourth time how much training cost. Not only do you have to pay for your own training, but the company has control over how you use your certification after you leave them. It would be the equivalent of me paying for my education at UCLA and then not being allowed to use it. Neurofeedback was an aggravating experience, not least because of the time investment.

I decided not to give up. I have work that I like, but I know that I want to dip a toe into the world of therapy, while most of the work that I do now (both with my mom’s company and with people who have special needs) centers around assessments. I researched a bit and found two certifications that I want to look into getting:

-LPCC (licensed professional counselor)

-Substance abuse counselor

Here’s the chain of networking that I did recently: 1) called a lovely woman with a MSW, and she gave me the contact information of 2 LPCCs. 2) so I called one of the LPCCs, and he gave me a lot of valuable information. I feel very enlightened now. I want to get one of these certifications so I can work while in grad school. Happiness is really important, and I’m grateful to love what I do and love the people I’m surrounded by enough to feel great at this time in my life.

Published by adventuresofagradgirl.wordpress.com

Hi, I'm Vera. I'm starting grad school for neuropsychology in fall 2020. A google search revealed that there are no current grad school blogs for psychology students. Anyway, I happen to know a girl who wants to document her journey to getting a doctorate (spoiler: it's me). Welcome. Hope you stay awhile!

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