A good education is essential for success in the field of your choice. You can progress if you have an idea of where you are going and where you want to be. If you have no direction in life, or are unsure of your career path, it can lead to confusion and a lack of direction, later in life. Deciding to choose Kaplan as my university was a personal choice for me. I selected this school after reviewing others that offered the same degree in Psychology that I wanted to pursue. I decided on Kaplan because they gave me the flexibility to do my classes online, instead of having to commute. My intention is to complete the required classes that I need to matriculate for my degree and begin my dream of helping others in the same way that I was helped. My hope is that this paper will show how I plan to embark on this academic journey and show how I hope to achieve this goal at the end. I have addressed the relevant topics that would enable one to see the different aspects of my plan and the ending result, upon completion.
I always wanted to become a Counseling Psychologist. Throughout my schooling, I have chosen subjects that would fit the requirements for that profession. My education up to this point and my degree goals are to pursue a masters program that will enable me to have my career of choice. I was previously enrolled at National Louis University in Chicago, IL, doing a masters program for Community Counseling, but only got to complete one year, because of the demands of my job. For this reason, I have switched to Kaplan Online to pursue a Masters degree for Psychology in Addictions Studies, here in Chicago, IL. This is my first year and I am only taking one class each semester as I want to be able to complete this course.
The graduate work that I am pursuing at Kaplan will help me to learn valuable skills that will enable me to perform my job to the best of my abilities. It covers many different areas of psychology and the ability to be marketable. The tutors will provide the commitment and the support that I need. I fully intend to utilize the services of Kaplan’s educational advisers to help me with my career plan.
I chose the online course, because no matter what goes on at work during the day, I will not be too tired to make it to class. My plan is to complete the degree in Psychology and return to get my license in counseling so that I can start my own practice. This practice will be centered on counseling for people who are addicted to drugs.
My area of emphasis would be people who struggle with drug addictions, because I was once addicted to drugs. I had an addiction that spanned twenty years, I went eight years without using drugs, but had a relapse. I am now clean and have been for seven years. I feel that because of this experience, I can make a direct impact on the lives of others who have suffered the same fate as I have. My experience has taught me a lot and I would just like to be able to share this knowledge with others and help those who are going through the same thing. When a person is addicted to anything, whether substance or alcohol, many different sectors of the society are impacted.
Their jobs, families, and their lives are affected in one way or another by this dependency. Research shows that an estimated 22 million people in the age group twelve and over were classified as substance abusers in 2005, but only about 10 percent out of this number were treated at specialty facilities (Miller, 2002). I am living proof that this disorder is treatable and I want to help by giving the families of drug addicts the hope that they need to help them and to save their lives. I think that I can provide the empathy and professionalism that they will need to beat this addiction.
I have done extensive research into the requirements of this career and have found that for some individuals without a degree, they can get a foot in the door, but there are a few licensing exams that are required. Even so, they will get less pay that those with degrees. They can get entry-level credentials in certificate and licensing programs, but they will need to do more studies to become professional counselors.
For those who have a masters degree, they will be required to work under the supervision of more seasoned counselors for approximately two years after they have completed their degrees. Depending on their state, they may also be required to take a few exams administered by he National Board for Certified Examiners or a National Counselor’s Exam.
They may also be required to complete an Examination for Master Addiction Counselors that is also offered by NBCC. They would also need to be working under supervision for a minimum of twenty hours per week for three years with two of them being after they have gotten their Masters degree. If one is successful in this exam, they will then become a Master Addictions Counselor.
With this accreditation, the person can get the status of a Substance Abuse Professional from the Federal Government. I also found out that a state license is different from the national credentials, even when they require the same types of tests. My plan to achieve this goal is to follow the requirements above and be disciplined in my approach. It can be hard after a while to complete courses with so many different distractions that sometimes crop up, but I view them as just that, distractions.
I feel like you get a test where different things are thrown at you to see how well you can handle yourself. If you fail, then you have ultimately failed that test and will not succeed, or will have to begin again, but if you are successful, then many opportunities will be available to you. I plan to stay the course and complete this degree, no matter what the distractions are.
One perceived deficiency on my part is my inability to multitask and my inability to adequately manage my time. I feel that for people who work and attend school, it is important for them to be able to manage their time and to be able to multitask. I would definitely need to address these two particular deficiencies as doing so would enable me to get more done, in terms of my studies and focusing on my goals.
For my problem with multitasking, I feel that if I attempt to complete tasks one at a time, then I would no doubt be able to focus on doing them each at the same time. In addition to getting more done, I would also be able to focus my attention on more than one projects at a time. For my time management problem, I plan to make a time table or a schedule and follow it strictly. This should enable me to eliminate the mundane tasks and have a separate time for my random activities. These are the activities that usually intrude on my dedicated work time.
I think that the class can help me by providing the support that I will need to achieve my goals. This support will help me to stay on the right path and learn what I need to learn in my chosen field. Every aspect of the lessons that are taught in my classes will be beneficial to me in the long run and I am happy that I chose Kaplan. In addition to the flexibility it provides, they also provide the targeted lessons that I need to help me. They provide an opportunity for us to learn the principles and theories that will lead to our MAC certification.
I feel that enabling us to go out in the field, much like an internship, to perform actual tasks that pertain to our field of study should also be a part of the course. I would like to learn more about the general scope of addictions counseling, as I am very interested in that topic. I would also like to know when and how to reach those who are in dire need, but will not request help for their addictions. These are also some of the people who I would like to help. I think that by liaising with the qualified counselors and using Kaplan’s resources that are available to me, I can learn how.
I plan to use my professional development plan to stay on track with my career goals. It will help me to be focused and to structure my educational needs for the future. It is important to have goals, because it gives you a mental picture of where you are, where you want to be and what you need to do to get there. I feel that without a goal, your life is just random and so too, are your job prospects.
When you have a goal, you know exactly what your life is about and how you can work towards your future. It also improves your chances for success. There are different goals that will improve motivation. Both intrinsic and extrinsic goals, that enable one to do what they want in life and are motivating, so too, are goals that give you the freedom to work in your chosen field. For me, the biggest motivation is the struggle that I faced with my addiction.
I am motivated because I would love to do for others, what someone did for me. Just the thought of my helping others is motivating enough for me and will help me to continuously improve my performance and my likelihood for success. The aspect of the work environment that increase motivation and job involvement, is being able to work with different people, groups and individuals. The many different scenarios that are presented to you on a daily basis increases your motivation to continue.
This motivating factor is what enables you to go above and beyond the requirements of the job, to see to it that those who are in need get the help that they require. The steps I plan to take now and in the future to ensure that I get the highest level of job satisfaction possible, is to continuously improve myself so that I will always be current in my field of expertise.
Researches are conducted on a daily basis in this area, so by consistently applying the findings each time they become available, I should be able to do so successfully.
- Miller, W. (2002). Educating psychologists about substance abuse. Substance Abuse, 23(sup1), 289-303. doi:10.1080/08897070209511522