How academic expertise inspired me to dream big

Many students undertake postgraduate study to gain the skills and knowledge required for a specialist career. This is true for Counselling and Psychotherapy student Manaal Mulla, a trainee psychotherapist with big plans for her future in the health sector.

Feeling challenged

The transition from undergraduate to postgraduate has definitely been a challenge in itself. While studying Counselling and Psychotherapy, I have felt appropriately challenged, I have been tested and have been able to critically evaluate my skills as a trainee psychotherapist. It has made me recognise areas for growth and pushed me to continue learning. I also think that the placement I took part in the second semester has stretched me and enabled me to feel prepared to start counselling clients.

My tutors have always been vocal about future plans and different pathways for students studying Counselling and Psychotherapy. They have explained to us the process of getting licensed as a psychotherapist with the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy post degree. They have also encouraged us to network and make valuable connections during placements.

My lecturers have inspired me to dream big by encouraging me to begin thinking about starting my own practice, contributing to the mental health field back in Dubai and even exploring the field of teaching. Being on placement as a compulsory part of the course has helped to prepare me to understand what it’s like being a psychotherapist. It has broadened my understanding of working ethically in the field and working with people from different backgrounds.

Excited for the future

My time at Derby has definitely changed the way I think about myself and my future. Personally, I struggled with some self-doubt about my competence as a trainee psychotherapist. The amount of training and support I have received from tutors has made a world of a difference in building and improving my skills. The encouragement from my lecturers has made me push myself to continue learning in this field.

My now healthy amount of self-doubt keeps me in check and makes me work harder. Concerning my future, I have been introduced to a lot of different pathways that I would not have considered previously. It has made me want to pursue multiple avenues and plan accordingly for it. I am excited about my future in this profession.

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