May 25, 2017

The Right Program, Judie Murphy, M.S., School Psychology, May 2018

Going back to school as a 40 something year old, wife and working mom of three children, one of whom is disabled, was no simple undertaking. When I considered going back for a masters in school psychology, my search for the right program was thorough and intense. I had to consider the time I would be away from my family, my job, my home. I had to consider the program itself and how flexible it could be. When I found Roberts, I found that perfect fit. Not only was Robert’s faculty willing to work with my travel and my schedule, they have provided a second home away from home where I feel supported, loved and valued.

I began the program part-time, coming to Roberts from Cortland (a 2 1/2 hour drive-one way) twice a week. After the first year, I realized I could go full-time and still work (thanks to a flexible employer) and did so. This past year, I did finally quit my work and concentrate on my studies to complete my degree requirements and attend practicum. Often, I am asked, “How do you do it?” and I always respond, it is SO worth the drive. Where else can you start a class with a moment of prayer shared with classmates and professors. Regardless of denomination affiliation, or lack thereof, the people I have encountered at Roberts have such a genuine passion for the care of themselves and each other; priorities include each other AND our studies not one or the other. I have created lifelong friends both with my classmates and my professors.

Professionally speaking, I feel more than prepared to enter internship in the fall. In my school based experiences thus far, my supervisors would say that I entered with a wealth of knowledge and practical experience to hit the ground running in my chosen profession. Roberts has prepared me in every aspect of my field. The School Psychology department staff is a great balance of clinical, school and research based professionals who are willing to spend as much time as needed to help all of us not only learn the material, but to internalize the profession. They bring a unique perspective to the field and work collaboratively to ensure we, as students, have everything we need to feel supported.

The only thing I regret about my experience at Roberts, is that it is coming to an end! I will miss my weekly commutes and the camaraderie I have enjoyed over the past three years.