College of Education and Behavioral Sciences News
CEBS Student Spotlight: Ashley MB Wilson
- Wednesday, March 23rd, 2022
Full Name: Ashley MB Wilson
Major: Doctor of Psychology in Applied Psychology
What year are you in the program? 5th year
Hometown: Current Hometown - Fancy Farm, KY | Originally from the Chicagoland Area
Preferred Pronouns: They/Them/Theirs
Why did you choose WKU’s PsyD in Applied Psychology program?
I picked WKU’s PsyD program for a variety of reasons. I had already completed my MA in Clinical Psychology and wanted a program that would honor those credit-hours. Additionally, I could not afford to stop working in order to obtain my doctorate. WKU’s PsyD program is designed to allow students to continue working and gathering clinical experience while completing coursework. It was the perfect fit for me.
How have you already applied what you are learning?
Given how the PsyD program is structured, I have had wonderful opportunities to utilize interventions that I am learning in my courses in my work with clients. Specifically, I have utilized Acceptance and Commitment Therapy activities with those I work with daily. Further, I have integrated numerous small things into the my work with clients - such as intake interview questions and psychoeducation resources.
What do you hope to do after graduation?
Ultimately I hope to open my own practice serving all clients in far Western Kentucky. I specifically want to create an affirming practice for LGBTQ+ individuals to be supported. I also have worked in the non-profit sector for a number of years, so I am fairly confident that a non-profit side project is likely in my future.
What experience(s) have you had during your years as a WKU student that have helped or is helping you prepare for a career after graduation?
The practicum experience has been profoundly valuable in preparing me for life after graduation. Some doctoral programs have students complete on-campus, low-paying practicums. At WKU, I have had the ability to find a practicum that speaks to me, switch practicum sites, and earn a living wage. This has allowed me to have a variety of experiences and to learn more about who I am as a clinician, what clinical work I like, and what clinical work I am not a fan of.
Additionally, the Supervision courses have been extremely helpful in preparing me for my eventual role as a Licensed Psychologist at which time I will be able to supervise masters level clinicians. Not only did those courses help me feel more prepared to be a supervisor, they also helped me get more out of being a supervisee. I feel that my supervision experience became more meaningful after finishing those courses. Additionally, I gained insight on how to determine if a supervisor would be a good fit for me.
What has been the best part of your WKU experience?
The best part has honestly been the relationships that have developed. I truly feel my cohort-mates will be lifelong friends. Additionally, the faculty are spectacular from my dissertation chair (Dr. Duffin) to the core PsyD Faculty (Dr. Thornberry, Dr. Grieve, Dr. Kuhlenschmidt, & Dr. Im). Given that I plan on practicing in this region for decades to come, having this network and wealth of knowledge to consult with is truly amazing.
What advice do you have for future PsyD students?
You will have a wealth of knowledge at your disposal in the minds of the faculty and your peers - ask them questions, consult when you are able, and try to stay open to learning from those around you. Additionally, hold on to your why - remembering why you want a PsyD will come in handy when studying, working on qualifying exams, and completing your dissertation. Speaking of dissertation, pick a topic you are curious, excited, or passionate about - and get started early!