Thursday, April 5, 2007

The Shrink

As part of my doctoral program, I have to go on a mandatory year-long psych internship. And the closer I get to graduation, the more real the prospect of leaving the comfortable cocoon of Ames becomes. On Tuesday, we had speakers come to our practicum class to talk about the tedious, nine-month long application and selection process, and this was just another cue that got me thinking about what I want to do. I have always been interested in working at a prison or correctional facility, but this desire is particularly strong right now. The thought is at once scary and exciting. I would get to work with a wonderfully interesting, though potentially dangerous population, on a variety of fascinating issues.

Ahh… but there’s a catch though! I have no experience working with the kind of individuals that I might have to work with on such an internship. Also, these internship sites usually prefer clinical psychologists to counseling psychologists. So what do I do? Well… starting this summer, I am going to do lots of volunteer work at the Assault Care Center. I will also try to work with the Ames and ISU PDs, and hope for the best.

I can’t help but think of B. D. Wong’s character, George Huang on Law and Order: SVU. Apart from being the only completely balanced individual on the SVU team, he is also exactly what I long to be. If I do end up working in a prison or correctional facility, I'll probably be hated, cursed, relentlessly called a "shrink" (a term I particularly hate), abused and maybe even attacked! I can't wait to begin! Wish me luck!

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