Careers in Psychology

Over the past several years, students graduating from Wellesley with a major in psychology have pursued a variety of activities. Some have gone on to graduate school in psychology, specializing in areas such as developmental, clinical, organizational/industrial, social, personality, counseling, educational, cognitive, and neuropsychology. A major in psychology also provides an excellent background for students interested in social work, education, health, public policy, business, law, or any field that requires an understanding of behavior or competence in conducting empirical research and analyzing data.

 

Graduate School in Psychology

Psychology alumnae who go on to pursue graduate degrees in psychology are admitted into top programs and frequently receive nationally competitive fellowships. In the past five years, the following psychology alumnae have received National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowships or Honorable Mentions for graduate study in psychology:

Halina Dour '08
Katherine Frost '10
Sohyun Han '10
Madeline Harms '08
Rachel Magid '12
Robyn Migliorini '09
Ashley Morris '08
Sarah Merrill '10
Brandi Newell '08
Hu (Helen) Pu '10
Marjorie Schaeffer '09
Amanda Utevsky '09

 

Psychology Department Alumnae Profiles

 

Sharon Colvin '99

Youth Services Consultant, Vermont Department of Libraries

My career is based heavily on what I learned while working at the Child Study Center and what I continue to learn from my mentor, Tracy Gleason. I was Tracy's first thesis student.  She encouraged me to push the boundaries of the Psychology department by studying Theory of Mind. She is one of the few people who completely understands how my love of Child Development folded into my pursuit of education and library services. Wellesley gave me the strong background that I use everyday in my work. Strangely, most youth librarians come from a literature background rather than a child development or education background. I'm proud to be a product of the Wellesley Psychology Department!  My goal is to change the way that librarians are trained to incorporate child development and education principles.  My new job is definitely a step in this direction. I'm lucky to have had the support of my thesis advisor for the past 15 years.

Will Sripakdeevong ’13

Owner, Rice Theory
(Link to 2015 article)
 

Marion Underwood '86

Dean of Graduate Studies; Associate Provost; Ashbel Smith Professor of Behavioral and Brain Sciences
University of Texas at Dallas

(Link to 2015 article)

 

Amanda Utevsky '09

Doctoral Student, Neuroscience, Duke University

How does your experience in the Wellesley Psychology Department influence or inform your current work?

My work in Maggie Keane's classes were really instrumental for me, as her Research Methods class taught me the basics of how to properly conduct research and how exciting it can be, as well as how to both read and write empirical papers (two skills that now seem so obvious to me, but were really very novel at the time!). Also, my independent honors thesis with Professor Keane gave me some real practical skills in terms of conducting a research study and the many, many steps along the way. Lastly, my statistics courses with Professor Genero really ignited my excitement for quantitative research and how to really let the numbers tell you about your data. Also, working with other students in classes got me used to collaborating with peers, reminding me that it's okay to ask for help when I need it!

I study the neural basis of social decision-making, so the nature of learning psychology and psychological research is critical in my research.

What do you consider to be your most significant experience in the Wellesley Psychology department?

Writing my departmental honors thesis. I ended up with null results in my research, which, while disappointing, is sometimes a fact of research. Working with these results trained me how to interpret null findings in the broader context of what I am studying. The project as a whole also trained me to stick with the many different phases of an experiment, from developing a paradigm, to running subjects, analyzing data, and finally creating a cohesive story that fits into the broader literature.