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Psychiatric Rehabilitation and Psychology, Personal Statement Example

Pages: 1

Words: 796

Personal Statement

My interest in developing a career in the field of Psychiatric Rehabilitation and Psychology is rooted in a combination of personal attributes and circumstances. I have long had a passion for learning; the acquisition of knowledge for its own sake underpins my drive to carve out a career in this field. Beyond that, I have faced a number of challenges and overcome a number of obstacles that are particularly relevant to –and responsible for- my motivations for pursuing my academic and professional goals. At the risk of resorting to cliché, I feel as if this career has chosen me. The events and situations that have been the most challenging have also been the ones that have bolstered my resolve to dedicate myself to the task of establishing a career in this field.

When I say that this field “chose me,” I am referring primarily to the family dynamic in which I was raised and how it has shaped me over the years. I am only twenty years old, but I have had a lifetime’s worth of relevant experience, largely predicated on my relationships with my younger brothers. The older of the two is fourteen, the younger is eight, and each of them has neurological deficiencies. The fourteen year old has been diagnosed with a number of disorders: he has ADHD and bipolar disorder, and exhibits characteristics found on the Autism Disorder spectrum. Having a brother with this range of conditions has been a challenge for my entire family, and we all tended to ignore the earliest signs of trouble and remained in a state of denial for quite some time. The younger of my two brothers has ADHD and Auditory Processing Disorder, and I and my family all vowed not to repeat our mistakes, and to confront his challenges head on. With this in mind, we have made a concerted effort to avail ourselves of assistance offered by his school and other community-based resources, while also creating a helpful environment in our home. In more recent months our concerns for the fourteen-year-old brother have been heightened, as he is making the transition from childhood to young adulthood. While the entire family understands that we will face new and different challenges as my brothers develop, I feel well-prepared to face those challenges now that I have armed myself with knowledge and have acquired some wisdom through experience.

Among the things for which I am most grateful is that I have had access to educational opportunities. I consider it a privilege, and I am all too aware that many people have not had similar opportunities. At the same time, however, I also recognize that part of acquiring an education is developing the capacity to set and meet goals, and to remain motivated in the face of setbacks and challenges. The experiences I have had with my brothers have made me realize how valuable education is, because I can see the real-world implications, benefits, and applicability of the things I have learned. In this context, “education” is not some ephemeral, intangible goal or accomplishment; it is a practical set of tools that have helped prepare me for my personal and professional challenges. My parents have the best of intentions where my brothers are concerned, but they have often been at a loss I terms of knowing what to do to help them. Among the benefits of my education has been that I better understand the mechanisms and systems that can provide help and assistance to my brothers and our entire family.

Much of my practical experience has been gained while working as a volunteer in the Geriatric Emergency Department of a nearby regional hospital as well as with the Junior Police Academy. Among the most important lesson I have learned in these organizations is the value of empathy and compassion. My primary task in the Geriatric Department is to simply offer comfort and assistance; at the Junior Police Academy I work with at-risk youth by providing guidance and emotional support. The feedback and the positive emotional responses I receive from staff, patients, and participants in these programs are incredibly rewarding.

It is this confluence of personal, professional, and academic challenges and opportunities that has shaped the person I have become. While I was raised to believe in the value of education, it was not until I had the chance to bring the lessons of my education to bear on real-life events and circumstances that I truly began to understand just how valuable it can be. I have also come to understand that education is only valuable when it is wedded to hard work and determination. My career goals are fairly simple: I hope to cultivate educational and economic resources that will allow me to be of service to my family and my community.

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