How do I start combining two majors I love into something beneficial for the public?
I am currently double majoring in dance and psychology at Cal State Fullerton. Later on I want to combine the two to become a child psychologist who incorporates dance into the therapy of children. I don't know where to start and I am hopeful someone will give me some ideas. Thank you :)
#questionsaboutlife #career-goals #dance #psychology #therapy
Look into meeting with a career counselor at your university. Also, look into your local community centers, including the previous suggestions at the YMCA. Reach out to local schools and meet with someone who counsels children to see how this could become a program at a school, perhaps you could take the lead and obtain grant funding.
If you haven't already, look up the American Dance Therapy Association and browse their site.
You're on the right path and there are many paths you can take in incorporate dance therapy with children, not just as a psychologist so explore your options! Hope this helps!
Major: Ethnic Studies & Psychology
Graduate Degree : Social Work and Public Policy
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I think your idea of combining your love of dance and psychology into a way to work with therapeutically with children is a really creative idea. Dance involves movement, which is a great way to get a child interested in what you have to say to them, or to relay the idea/suggestion/insight you have, to them. Children love to move. I think any child who came to you for "counseling" and found out that they would be using dance to express their emotions, would find that so intriguing!
To work towards your goal, I would ask you to think about what in 'dance' and what in 'psychology' do you most like, or identify with. I would ask you to picture your perfect day at work, a day when you worked with a student and you were able to use dance as a way to 'reach' the student, and help them express their feelings or if you knew what the issue was, as away in which they could use dance to help them work through their feelings about their issue. With and when you have those ideas in mind, I would then say, lets you and I work on practical ways to incorporate your two different "majors" or talent areas into what a real Psychological/Dance therapy session would look like.
From there, depending on your school, I would next assist you in finding the classes that best help you merge your two goal areas (dance and psychology) in a way that helps you learn the skills you would need to be a psychologist who uses dance to work with their clients. Again, I am very impressed with your idea, and I think you can really do a lot of good with that style of therapeutic client work.
Also, I think it would be a good next step, in finding a person or persons who have current practices in psychology that closely mirror your goal, and reaching out to them for a possible internship or even just a 'shadowing' experience, where you could see and grow your idea, into a real plan of action.
Hopefully, in finding a possible internship experience, we could petition the university you attend for college credit for your internship. I would also recommend researching others who may have the same or close ideas as you have, and see what you could learn from those who have tried similar methods.
In working together with your university or college, I would suggest developing a graduation course plan, meeting with instructors in your chosen field, and seeing who would be a good fit for your plan of action. We would next start the process of getting your degree plan approved at your school.
On your part, research about ways to incorporate dance into a therapy session may give you ideas you had not yet considered. Assisting you in finding a mentor would be a top priority for your advisor.
Ultimately, you would need to know, in your state, what the legal requirements are to be a therapist (working with the age of client that you would like to specialize in). An advisor could help you start that process. Once you know the requirements, we would make sure you are working towards that goal, and then work with someone in the Dance department, as necessary, to include any coursework you would need to be certified in your area. I think working alongside someone to develop a plan of action, in helping you to (1) narrow or determine your focus (2) assist you in completing the necessary steps for certification in your state (3)helping you define your goals in merging the two disciplines of Dance and Psychology and (4) getting that plan approved by your school, and possibly the State, if needed, would be steps necessary to making your dream a reality.
Again, I think your idea of using dance in therapy is a fantastic idea. I hope one day to read about your success and know that you are making a real difference in the lives of others. Way to go, champ!!
Congratulations on being interested in finding the right career to follow.. It takes a special person to enter into a specific career field and meet the demands which that career area presents. The first step is to get to know yourself to see if you share the personality traits which make one successful in that area. The next step is doing networking to meet and talk to and possibly shadow people doing what you might think that you want to do to see if this is something that you really want to do, as a career area could look much different on the inside than it looks from the outside. When I was doing college recruiting, I encountered too many students, who skipped these important steps, and ended up in a career/job for which they were ill suited.
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