1. It’s Test Prep Week! Visit the Test Prep Forums to learn about test prep products and services, ask questions in test-related AMA threads, take advantage of exclusive SDN member discounts, and enter to win free stuff!
Studying for the DAT, GRE, OAT or PCAT? Test Prep Week Exhibitors are here to help!

Would you do it over again?

Discussion in 'Psychology [Psy.D. / Ph.D.]' started by UnicornDemon, Jul 21, 2013.

  1. SDN is made possible through member donations, sponsorships, and our volunteers. Learn about SDN's nonprofit mission.
  1. UnicornDemon

    UnicornDemon 2+ Year Member

    101
    6
    Jun 8, 2013
    Knowing what you know now, if given the option to all the way back to undergrad, would you choose again to pursue a PsyD or PhD in psychology?

    If no, what would you have done instead?
     
  2. SDN Members don't see this ad. About the ads.
  3. CheetahGirl

    CheetahGirl Clinical Psychologist 10+ Year Member

    1,356
    719
    Feb 15, 2007
    formerly from Atlanta, GA
    Yes, I would pursue my Clinical Psych PhD without a shadow of doubt.
     
  4. WisNeuro

    WisNeuro Board Certified Neuropsychologist 7+ Year Member

    6,534
    4,210
    Feb 15, 2009
    Somewhere
    Psychologist
    In a heartbeat.
     
  5. Ya Ya

    Ya Ya 2+ Year Member

    100
    0
    Jul 24, 2011
    Although I'm still a student, I don't regret my choice to attend a clinical psych program. I hope to feel the same when I graduate! :)
     
  6. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    3,007
    280
    Aug 5, 2005
  7. cara susanna

    cara susanna 7+ Year Member

    5,196
    1,293
    Feb 10, 2008
    East Coast
    Ask me in ten years?
     
  8. Doctor Eliza

    Doctor Eliza 7+ Year Member

    853
    97
    Jul 30, 2010
    Psychologist
    We've had an identical thread previously.

    Perhaps a moderator can combine them?

    Dr. E
     
  9. G Costanza

    G Costanza Psychologist - UCC 5+ Year Member

    473
    509
    Jun 23, 2011
    Some kind of surgeon.
     
    DrMikeP likes this.
  10. priorities2

    priorities2 5+ Year Member

    132
    4
    May 18, 2012
    Is this serious? If so, can you elaborate on the reasons? I'm intending to go into mental health care after graduating from my BSN program but my mom really wants me to be a CRNA, lol. I looked through some curricula for CRNA schools and it sounds absolutely boring as could be. Your post makes me wonder how someone so interested in mental health care could be also so interested in surgery. Just curious. =)
     
  11. mewtoo

    mewtoo 2+ Year Member

    315
    4
    May 12, 2012
    I don't see why they couldn't? Personally, if I didn't want to do psych, I would be trying to get my degree in microbiology, specifically virology.
     
  12. xXIDaShizIXx

    xXIDaShizIXx 5+ Year Member

    1,949
    41
    Sep 18, 2011
    What can I say, everyone can have more than one interest.
     
  13. AnnoyedByFreud

    AnnoyedByFreud 7+ Year Member

    533
    86
    Mar 26, 2009
    A couple of people in my program turned down CRNA school to become NPs. CRNA might make big money, but you're right - it is boring as all get out, until someone is crashing. Blech.
     
  14. erg923

    erg923 Psychologist 10+ Year Member

    9,167
    2,585
    Apr 6, 2007
    probably not. Likely I/O or just a masters in OD or something. Perhaps culinary school.
     
  15. ADDICTED2STATS

    ADDICTED2STATS 5+ Year Member

    177
    5
    Apr 5, 2009
    I'll second cullinary school. Maybe physics, but probably some area of med-surg. Definitely not clinical psych. That isn't to say I don't love what I do though.
     
  16. image187

    image187 7+ Year Member

    378
    45
    Mar 9, 2009
    Physician
    it's amazing how many psychiatrists I've asked have told me they had a tough time deciding between psych and surgery, and how many surgeons I asked told me they had a tough time deciding between the surgery and psych. Personally, I plan to apply to psych residencies soon but I loved my surgery rotation so much it was an unexpected close second. After some thought i decided mental health and surgery are probably less different than one might think
     
  17. Jon Snow

    Jon Snow Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    3,007
    280
    Aug 5, 2005
    We don't live very long. I've already done psych, I'd try something different. I could go any number of directions, musician, writer, or, perhaps, entrepreneur.
     
  18. HomeworkHelper

    HomeworkHelper 2+ Year Member

    165
    16
    Nov 21, 2011
    I'm a couple weeks from finishing a PhD program. I would absolutely do it all over again, as long as you wiped my memory so it didn't seem too tedious to start back at the beginning. :)
     
  19. bmedclinic

    bmedclinic 7+ Year Member

    906
    242
    May 9, 2008
    Psychologist
    If I could do it all over again, I absolutely would-- now, I've made some mistakes that have potentially impacted my career, and I'd seek to amend those, but yeah.

    If clinical psych wasnt an option, I'd probably do computer programming/own a coffee shop because I enjoy being a huge nerd. Still might do the coffee shop thing later in life.
     
  20. LETSGONYR

    LETSGONYR 5+ Year Member

    351
    85
    Jul 7, 2012
    Washington, DC
    Nope. The path is too long. I'd go into teaching or politics.
     
  21. cara susanna

    cara susanna 7+ Year Member

    5,196
    1,293
    Feb 10, 2008
    East Coast
    History teacher, probably. Which is also an over-saturated field at the moment ;) Or a graphic designer.
     
  22. PHD12

    PHD12

    945
    3
    Nov 21, 2012
    I don't regret anything that I've done since it was a great learning experience. I'm pretty sure though that I would be able to make a higher income with a BA degree going into business or starting my own company without the hassle of 7 years of training for my degree. I would have liked to work in the private sector in a management role and I may do that in the future since psychology does not pay well enough. Still a postdoc so i'm not sure what my career trajectory will be. Would have loved to get an MBA, but already spent too much time in school for clinical psychology.
     
  23. Pragma

    Pragma Neuropsychologist 5+ Year Member

    2,957
    400
    Dec 29, 2011
    Psychologist
    I don't have any regrets about the training I got. I loved my program. Low compensation during the program, internship, and postdoc did make it quite stressful. In that sense, when I saw my medical resident friends getting paid more, I had some moments where I thought I would perhaps wanted to have gone to medical school instead. But if I had done that, I wouldn't have wanted to be a psychiatrist. I probably would have picked on non mental health specialty.

    When I take a step back, I am grateful for all that I have learned. I am grateful my program was funded, even if the stipends weren't quite livable. I can't imagine having had to pay tuition and living expenses on my own.

    The only thing that frustrates me about the field now is the proliferation of programs with low standards. By not controlling the supply side of the profession through our central organization, these programs have basically watered down the quality of clinical psychologists and have contributed to massive student debt problems. While my chosen line of work isolates me from most of the clinical impact of this highly irresponsible training model, I am not isolated from having to explain to people that there are basically two types of psychologists - ones who got basically master's level training but can call themselves "doctor" because they paid for it, and those who went to legitimate programs. The fact that this is even an issue in our field is extremely frustrating.
     
    Biopsychosocialmodel likes this.
  24. Sanman

    Sanman O.G. 10+ Year Member

    1,179
    105
    Sep 1, 2000
    While I certainly do not regret my path, I may have opted for something like SLP, audiology, or PT. They have a shorter time to completion and similar lifestyle and income. That said, if I had not taken this path, I may not have met my SO and I would not want to change that. You can't change only one aspect of your life without it affecting others. Overall, life is pretty good.
     
  25. paramour

    paramour 7+ Year Member

    1,979
    6
    Jan 16, 2007
    Absolutely not. I'm back on the administration route, which is where I started to go when I first considered grad school ... and the past umpteen years have provided me with "phenomenal" experiences to land me a position after my eventual departure. However, there are certainly more effective and efficient pathways. :p

    Of course, there's always the possibility I may not have landed such a position without such a circuitous route...
     
  26. G Costanza

    G Costanza Psychologist - UCC 5+ Year Member

    473
    509
    Jun 23, 2011
    It is serious to a degree. I am disappointed with the job outlook of our field even though I think I'll be fine. I think we are undervalued as a profession because too may psychologists are terrible at advocating for themselves. That being said, my doc program has been wonderful. Not only am I prepared for my future, but I'm a better human being because of it.

    So I wouldn't want to give up the personal growth component of my program but yes, I would rather go into a field where my skills are appreciated. My master's program helped me learn how to really listen to people. Having a great bedside manner along with solid surgeon skills would make me pretty marketable I imagine. I could still teach too. I also wouldn't mind being able to tell people what I do and have them be interested in it rather than scared off or clueless on how to respond.
     
    Biopsychosocialmodel likes this.
  27. thewesternsky

    thewesternsky 10+ Year Member

    785
    74
    Jan 30, 2007

    I agree with this completely. I would have gone the SLP or OT route for sure (or maybe MSW, but I'm not sure I would have enjoyed the training as much). I am happy where I am now, going into my final year of my PhD program, but I feel I could be just as happy in one of those fields and the training is significantly shorter.
     
  28. AcronymAllergy

    AcronymAllergy Neuropsychologist SDN Moderator 7+ Year Member

    6,800
    1,128
    Jan 7, 2010
    Psychologist
    No clue if things will change after I've been working for a few years, but as things currently stand, I'd do it all again. There just isn't another field/job I could see myself being as interested in or happy with.

    Part of that likely stems from my eternal sense of optimism, and the associated belief that our field isn't yet too far gone to be saved.
     
  29. WisNeuro

    WisNeuro Board Certified Neuropsychologist 7+ Year Member

    6,534
    4,210
    Feb 15, 2009
    Somewhere
    Psychologist
    Huzzah to that. And, if this ship sinks, I'm going down with it. After that, who knows, maybe I'll become a bartender, or a politician.
     
  30. Member6523

    Member6523 2+ Year Member

    156
    0
    Dec 11, 2011
    For neuropsychology I'd do it again. Not for plain old psychology.
     
  31. paramour

    paramour 7+ Year Member

    1,979
    6
    Jan 16, 2007
    :laugh: I kept saying that I was going to culinary school after I left grad school a few months ago, so I could open a bakery. I decided this would probably not bode well for me personally (as I would likely eat all my goods :oops: ).
     
  32. Ollie123

    Ollie123 10+ Year Member

    4,548
    917
    Feb 19, 2007
    I'm with Jon. I enjoy it right now and have no regrets, but would probably try something new just because I have a lot of interests and variety is the spice of life.

    Foremost on my mind is either biomedical engineering or some variety of computer science/engineering. Dabbled in computer science as an undergrad and have been programming since I was 10, but never went all in. I have outlets for it in psychology but I can get really "in the zone" when debugging code or doing similar types of problem-solving that seem somewhat more endemic to those fields than to psychology. On the other hand, I think its probably easier to find ways to get those experiences in psychology than to try and do the psychology things I enjoy as an engineer (one of the major pluses of our field).
     
  33. UnicornDemon

    UnicornDemon 2+ Year Member

    101
    6
    Jun 8, 2013
    I'm guessing you're all still students? Have any of you finished your PhD or PsyD and started your actual careers?
     
  34. erg923

    erg923 Psychologist 10+ Year Member

    9,167
    2,585
    Apr 6, 2007
    Yes. me, wiseneuro, chetah, jon snow, Doctor Eliza, Ph.D12 all have our degrees.

    Edit: also pragma and Sanman and AcronymAllergy.
     
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2013
  35. Sanman

    Sanman O.G. 10+ Year Member

    1,179
    105
    Sep 1, 2000
    Don't forget me! I have no urge to be back in grad school.
     
  36. erg923

    erg923 Psychologist 10+ Year Member

    9,167
    2,585
    Apr 6, 2007
    I am not sure of all of the group, but some are in post-doc training/positions still. I had the luxury to forgo all that and took a job (visiting assistant professor at a small school) right after internship that I recently left for a much better paying clinical/clinical admin job.

    I do know Jon Snow is a researcher and clinician (one day per week last time i checked) at a large medical center and VA, Doctor Eliza is in private practice. Pragma is professor at an R2 state school.
     
  37. coldsweat

    coldsweat 7+ Year Member

    77
    4
    Feb 12, 2009
    If I could go back in time, I would consider forgoing a psychology PhD for a statistics or biostatistics degree. I enjoy clinical work, but I think I would prefer a pure research degree so that I could have even more time to devote to research. Plus grad school has only reinforced my obsession for measurement and quantitative methods, and sometimes I feel like I don't have sufficient time to learn the methods I want.
     
  38. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    21,087
    1,992
    Oct 6, 2006
    The Beach
    Faculty
    Same for me. If I could start over tomorrow I'd probably open up my own consulting/think tank company and try and retire by 50 so I can travel.

    I am currently FT faculty at an R1 med school, which allows me a comfortable salary and flexible schedule, but the cost/benefit analysis sucks when compared against other job options I had (e.g. continue my consulting career, transition to investment banking, etc). Most days I get up and look forward to my day, which was not the case when I worked for CorpMurica and got ulcers worrying about meeting deadlines and dealing with unreasonable clients. The grass isn't always greener.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2014
    Biopsychosocialmodel likes this.
  39. futureapppsy2

    futureapppsy2 Postdoctoral fellow Gold Donor SDN Moderator 7+ Year Member

    4,859
    702
    Dec 25, 2008
    My thoughts exactly ;)
     
  40. wandergirl

    wandergirl 2+ Year Member

    40
    5
    Sep 8, 2012
    I would probably do a MA degree that would allow me to be a clinician, or become an estate planning atty, or if I had better body sense do PT. I'm quite happy with my PhD and my career options now, but to me the graduate school experience and timing of it was really not worth it economically or personally.
     
  41. Justanothergrad

    Justanothergrad Counseling Psychologist 2+ Year Member

    800
    432
    Mar 2, 2013
    Psychologist
    Faculty
    Yup. No question.

    Unless my other option was to inherit the gates family wealth.

    Then maybe.
     
  42. CompleteUnknown

    CompleteUnknown

    30
    11
    Jun 12, 2016
    As of this moment, sure! That being said, there are many other things I'd be happy doing, such as graphic design or being a librarian.
     
    Biopsychosocialmodel likes this.
  43. smalltownpsych

    smalltownpsych 2+ Year Member

    Yes. I already did about 20 other jobs and they all were pretty crummy to varying degrees. Working in a cold storage warehouse being one of the worst. Trying to sell vacuum cleaners door to door was a good one. Selling pagers and medicare HMOs wasn't too bad, but in both of those, they were bought out by another company and whole department laid off. Also, worked for a mortgage company and then when the interest rates changed, they closed up shop. The business world is pretty cold and uncaring and being unemployed and starting from scratch again is no fun at all.
     
  44. Rivi

    Rivi 7+ Year Member

    552
    124
    Jan 29, 2009
    Yes, I would do this again. My job as a psychologist is rewarding, interesting, has good job security, flexibility, decent pay, and is generally respected by others. There are lots of different things that I can do as well.
     
  45. DrMikeP

    DrMikeP 2+ Year Member

    1,696
    1,029
    Apr 25, 2014
    Florida
    Psychologist
    Faculty
    I enjoy the clinical work as a medical psychologist, but would have went straight into medicine instead. However, my clinical psych and practice management training/experience is invaluable and will make me a much better physician. The nice thing about life is you can always do something different at some point and every experience you make it through can help to ultimately build you into a better person.
     
    GroverPsychMD likes this.
  46. singasongofjoy

    singasongofjoy 2+ Year Member

    492
    320
    Dec 4, 2014
    Psychologist
    Yes- absolutely- but I might choose a different program for the sake of my own sanity. I don't think I'd have the stamina to go through those on-campus years again.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2016
    Therapist4Chnge likes this.
  47. CheetahGirl

    CheetahGirl Clinical Psychologist 10+ Year Member

    1,356
    719
    Feb 15, 2007
    formerly from Atlanta, GA
    Wow. Don't tell me you've also had a long career in the military as a special OP and a decorated hero, and you're one of those high school sports superstars (!). :cool:

    Kidding... just picking on you. :)

    I agree, 100%.

    Regarding the original post, anecdotally and recently notable...I was the most excited to get back to work after a vacation; more than I've been in very long time (perhaps because I am now mainly doing what I have been trained to do, with most of the training behind me, and supervision & advisement have become more peer support and collegial collaboration).

    IMO that's a good sign of intrinsic job satisfaction and outcomes of job productivity, security, burnout, etc.
     
  48. DrMikeP

    DrMikeP 2+ Year Member

    1,696
    1,029
    Apr 25, 2014
    Florida
    Psychologist
    Faculty
    LOL...I actually did some military contract work as an engineer but no special ops and no hero's medals. :) Let's just say I've been blessed with many lives in one and a I'm hoping perhaps for a few more before this journey is over.

    Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk
     
    CheetahGirl likes this.
  49. Psycycle

    Psycycle Psychologist 10+ Year Member

    373
    58
    Jul 9, 2006
    I like what I do and I enjoy the variety as well as the intellectual stimulation. I have seen and admired several psychologists in their 70s and 80s who are working an enjoyable job part time while living a nice life. I think I'm fairly well paid, especially since I managed to get loan repayment, so financially things are ok. I still feel very drawn to medicine, so I often feel that if I could do it over I would go that route.
     
  50. Therapist4Chnge

    Therapist4Chnge Neuropsych Ninja Faculty Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    21,087
    1,992
    Oct 6, 2006
    The Beach
    Faculty
    Medicine is very much in transition right now, so I know for some (at least for me), that would give me pause. From an intellectual standpoint I understand the reasoning, but from an economic and independence perspective…it's a lot more limited than it was 30+ years ago. There are now so many competing agendas in between the patient and the physician, I'm not sure I'd want to put myself in the position where I can't have an adequate relationship with my patients. I struggle with that now as a neuropsychologist, though at a lesser extent because I don't have ongoing relationships with my patients (I only see them for an intake, assessment, and feedback).
     
  51. CheetahGirl

    CheetahGirl Clinical Psychologist 10+ Year Member

    1,356
    719
    Feb 15, 2007
    formerly from Atlanta, GA
    Knew it. :happy:
     
    DrMikeP likes this.

Share This Page