Hi all, so I got my Bachelor's in accounting but after several years of working in the field, I realized that I really hate it and that it's not what I want to do with my life. Once I graduated and actually began working in the real world, I realized I was way more interested in the psychological aspects of life: observing people and figuring out why they are the way they are (from my co-workers to criminals), how coming from certain cultures affect one's developments and beliefs, and studying success (such as how to maximize efficiency in the workplace). I would spend my free time obsessively reading books and scholarly articles, watching documentaries, and getting into lengthy discussions with others about psychology. I've been researching careers in psychology for about a year now and concluded that it's really the field I want to go into. I eventually want to get my PhD in social or I/O psych, and after ideally work for corporations, government institutions, or in academia. So I quit my accounting job recently and decided to take intro psychology courses at my local community college; unfortunately, I never took a psychology class during undergrad so I have to start at the bottom. I know that I need research experience to apply to a PhD program, but that's where I'm having a lot of problems; I don't know how and where to find it. There is a university (the nearest one from me) about an hour away from me that has research labs, but most seem to only accept their own university students for RAs. I don't even know where I can volunteer to get relevant experience in social or I/O psychology. I've tried asking my CC psych professors for advice in finding relevant experience, but most of them are in clinical and don't know or have told me to just volunteer at a mental hospital. For those who have gone the research route, is it still worth volunteering in a mental hospital and/or counseling positions even though it's not the field I want to go into? Some have also told me to volunteer to work with troubled children and victims of physical abuse, but I don't know if that's a good idea since I'm not interested in working in the clinical field. Am I being too picky? I just don't want to spend my time (especially since it's not paid) doing something and find out it didn't even contribute to my career and grad school prospects. I have heard though that research students do clinical stuff as well (and vice versa), so there's that as well... To be honest, I don't really know who to turn to for advice anymore, as I've exhausted all the psychology contacts I know of, and I don't know what to believe from all the stuff I'm reading online. Should I go back to a 4 year institution and pursue my second bachelors in psych, or stay in community college (just take all the basic psych courses) and then go get a masters first? I know masters are not required to apply for PhD programs, but since I don't have much experience in psychology, I figured it might give me extra knowledge about the field. Also, I see a lot more job opportunities open to masters than those with a psych BA. I also heard of post bacc programs that some 4 year institutions offer where people with an unrelated bachelors can take undergrad psych classes and get a certification, but after researching them it seems like the courses are the same ones I'm taking at my CC, just a lot more expensive. However, most of them do seem to offer students rich research opportunities, which my CC doesn't offer. If I do decide to do a post bacc though, I'd have to move cities and spend a lot of money for moving and tution. I also know that many universities (at least in the US) offer summer research programs to outside students which I was interested in doing. But most of them state in their requirements that applicants have to be an undergrad at a 4 year institution and/or don't possess a previous bachelors degree, which I obviously don't fit in. Reading this kind of crushed my hopes, and now I'm afraid that it's too late, that I'll never be able to find research experience and get into a PhD program due to my lack of experience and lack of research opportunities. Lastly, because I still have to pay bills, I need to find a paying job. Since I'm taking classes at my CC, ideally I'm looking for a part time one. What kind of entry level jobs do you recommend I could take up while in CC that's kind of related to psychology but doesn't need a BA/higher degree in psychology? Or does it even matter? Sorry to make this post so long, but thanks so much for reading through it. I really could use some (good) advice or recommendations for my current situation. Since I'm fairly new to the psychology field, I apologize if I came off naiive or said something really ridiculous sounding.