Kelsey Ball completed her PhD in Clinical Psychology at Howard University in Washington, D.C. After completing internship at the University of Miami Counseling Center, she began working as an independent contractor and consultant for an assessment company in Washington, DC, where she currently specializes in forensic and school-based evaluations. Her training in forensic settings, schools, community mental health and private practice has provided her with a variety of clinical experiences with diverse populations. Having grown up in Bermuda, she has a particular interest in minority mental health and consistently advocates for holistic approaches to health and wellness with at-risk populations. In her free time, Kelsey enjoys yoga, dancing, cooking and teaching violin and flute to young musicians.
Do you remember that catchy little tune by Bobby McFerrin? “In every life we have some trouble, but when you worry you make it double, don’t worry… be happy!” I know it’s a bit corny, but it is so true when it comes to exam prep.
The prospect of being happy seems nearly impossible when preparing for exams like the Examination for Professional Practice in Psychology (EPPP). Hours of time spent studying. Fatigue from sleepless nights of cramming and, of course, good ol’ financial strain from the hundreds of dollars spent on study materials. It can be a bit much. But, as someone who recently passed EPPP, I promise there are ways to make your EPPP journey a happy one.
Before we get into the tips for making EPPP a more positive experience, I’d like to take a moment to acknowledge what everyone is probably thinking right now: Yes. The EPPP is a daunting exam. Yes. It feels cruel and unfair. Yes, it sucks. However, it is a necessary part of becoming a clinician.
As aspiring mental health professionals and clinicians, we are constantly looking for new ways to improve our practice to better serve our clients. As a field, psychology is known for integrating new innovations into existing practices.
It is this receptivity and openness to new methods and practices that have been essential components to maintaining clinical competence within our field.
As psychology graduate students, we accomplish many milestones along the path to earning our doctorate degrees. One milestone that can be particularly exciting is the completion of the APPIC doctoral internship. Given the hundreds of wonderful placement sites spread out across the nation, many grad students find themselves having to relocate to a new city for their internship year.
Whether you’re moving across town, across state lines, or across the country, getting settled in a new city for internship can be a little nerve-racking.
In addition to the typical concerns that come with moving, you also have internship-specific concerns such as finding housing that is close to your internship site and, my personal favorite, figuring out how in the world you are going to survive off of your stipend.
The bad news is, it’s a lot to juggle physically and mentally. The good news is, it’s all doable!
As graduate students in the mental health field, we are tasked with the challenge of helping others achieve mental wellness. However, in focusing on the wellbeing of others, we often completely forget to take care of our own emotional health.
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