June 6th, 2005

Cthulhu Joyce

My chosen.

In my consideration of multiple graduate programs I have come to the conclusion that I don't care to muck about with a master's degree, terminal or otherwise. It is much more important to me that I respect the school I attend as well as the program I choose - these conclusions are not necessarily related to master's degrees in general. Rather, in the field I wish to pursue there is a dearth of research based Masters or Ph. D. programs specifically in the areas of the country I actively wish to live in.

That said, I should point out that as I see it, importance of location is only as important as the program is below my expectations; to wit, the better the program, the less I really care about where I am. Also, I was only looking in places where I knew lady_fox would be willing to live because her location-related happiness is important if she works a similar job. It's like off setting a sims' depression while practicing charisma by putting the room 10 statue in the bathroom. ;) The more I thought about location, the more I thought I didn't care so long as we have friends close by and a nice apartment; these are key. The only exception to this is the San Francisco Bay area, which is my favorite place in America. I know only my Aunt and Uncle out there, so clearly it fails the "friends" portion of the equation. Also, lady_fox likes the area enough to assuage the "no friends" status of the S.F. Bay Area.

Thus, my satisfaction really relies on three factors where satisfying two of these three makes a program/place combination acceptable. I should not that I hold Fox's acceptance of location as constant by only looking in areas she is ok with, but I think her beliefs ally with mine. So, finding a really good program near friends seems the best plan. Now that Virginia has opened its borders all three of my key factors are turning out in spades. Virginia, by merit of its East Coast location is in the "heart" of the ergonomic spread westward which offers several excellent programs in I/O psych as well as Human Factors psychology. Furthermore, lady_fox and I seem to have acquired an excellent friend base in that area which is delightful. What astonishes me is that not only does VA have the good programs and friend, but the cities in which these schools are located are pretty nice. Even Norfolk, which is the least "good" of the pair seems equivalent to Madison in per capita statistics. Now, I assume it will feel older and be a bit dustier as that is a defining feature of East Coast housing in general, but I think I can manage.... Or just go to Fairfax. :)

So, without further ado Collapse )

That's pretty much it. All the other programs on the west coast are terminal Masters. While I'll most likely apply to one or two profession programs (Namely San Jose and one other [maybe another bid at UW- Seattle, I don't know yet]) I don't admit liking the idea of these programs. Honestly? I don't have much regard for professional psychology degrees. This is because I hold psychology to be either a distinct scientific or medical practice. Yes, I realize I want to get into applied psychology, but I feel it would better serve me better to have the rigorous academic training. That is much more useful to the world at large. Furthermore it keeps my options open. It is easy enough to transition from research to applied with a research degree, many do so; it is very difficult to transfer from applied to research without a research degree. It is better for me in the long run.

I, also, will not deny that doctors make far more money in applied psych than others in the long run; whereas consultants can earn far, far more in a shorter time span. It is important to know, though, that old doctors get statues and old consultants get downsized.

Edit: This program would be a lark, I think.
Existential-Phenomenological Therapeutic Psychology

Final thoughts: My brain is saying that I've chosen too quickly where every other part of me says that the universe aligned. THe fact that two programs I found yesterday are the top picks is a little unsettling. But, I wonder I they would have been if I'd been looking in VA for programs. That is not the state of thingsm though. Many compelling and intereseting events happened this weekend.

Oh, and I lost 2.5 pounds this last week.5, even with a rich greek dinner. Woot calorie counting! Back under 190.