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A four-minute video changed this psychology student's life

This article appears in: Psychology, Science
Psychology student Fatima in Darwin

Studying psychological science at Charles Darwin University not only transformed Fatima's career, but it also dramatically altered the way she sees herself and understands world around her. 

Fatima always felt like she didn’t belong.

"Despite being proud of having a cross-cultural identity, this put a burden on me as I struggled with bullying and have never felt accepted anywhere - whether that was here in a Western environment for wearing a hijab, or even in my home country for having Western attributes (English accent, style)."

One day, she stumbled upon a video about coping strategies. 

“Random as it may have seemed at the time, that video became a turning point in my life," she says.

I was introduced to psychology, and I felt understood.

“So, I started reading more and researching more, and one day I realised I’d stopped caring about people’s perceptions of me. That four minute and 36 second video I watched taught me how to find strength amidst adversity and has been the start of my change and strengthening in personality.”

Inspired by her newfound interest in psychology, she decided to turn it into a profession.

“No one achieves their dreams simply by sitting around and waiting for things to happen,” says Fatima, so she enrolled in a Bachelor of Psychological Science at Charles Darwin University.

Soaking up psychology

Fatima says there hasn’t been a single unit in her degree that she hasn’t liked. 

“Every topic I learned about taught me something new,” she explains. “Learning about drugs and alcohol sheds light on the control substances have over us."

“Similarly, studying social psychology opened my eyes to the influence that people and society exert on us. Exploring developmental psychology emphasised the significance of reaching milestones for successful growth and illuminated the adverse effects of not attaining them.”

She says the highlight of her learning has been applying her new knowledge.

“The exposure to real-world scenarios and the opportunity to work with vulnerable populations have strengthened my knowledge and understanding of psychological dynamics and interventions.”

Connecting to her career

“What I find sets CDU apart from many other universities is its industry connections. These connections pave the way for invaluable networking opportunities.”

Thanks to these connections, Fatima was accepted into a graduate program that led to a job as a child protection practitioner.

Psychology became my calling during a time when I was a in dark place and used it as a means to navigate my way out. Because of this, I want to be able to use my training to work in areas that most require psychological aid but are avoided by most people.

“By working directly with children who have experienced trauma and adversity, I have the opportunity to apply my expertise to alleviate their suffering and support their healing process.”

She hopes to continue empowering those who feel alone and powerless throughout her career. 

“My CDU experience has helped in preparing me for that.” 

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