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Psychology students have opportunities to participate in clubs on campus and field work off campus. Experiential and service learning initiatives help students grasp the critical thinking skills necessary for a psychology career while gaining real-world experience.
The Psychology Club is a student-led group for any students, majors or non-majors, interested in psychology. Students get together periodically to learn more about psychology and get to know each other and faculty better in informal settings. The club and the department sponsor a fall picnic, a field trip (e.g., the state hospital), dinner out with the faculty, a brown bag interdisciplinary talk, and an end-of-the-year party. For more information about the Psych Club, e-mail professor harry.wallace [at] trinity.edu (Harry Wallace).
Psychology majors may participate in off-site service learning through the department's practicum course. This course provides students with the opportunity to obtain clinical experience and/or off-campus research experience. Placements vary and are arranged in consultation with professor Carolyn Becker, who oversees the practicum experience. Recent placements include the Rape Crisis Center; Juvenile Probation; Child Safe, which provides advocacy for child sexual abuse survivors; the United Way Helpline; American Sunrise, which provides after school educational support to underserved children; San Antonio State Hospital; and a variety of research positions at the Health Science Center.
In addition to spending approximately eight hours per week at their placements, students meet once per week in class to share their experiences, explore ethical issues associated with the helping professions, and to obtain additional supervision. The practicum course is currently offered once per year in the fall semester. Students are required to establish their practicum placement in the previous spring semester by meeting with Becker and completing any application procedures at the chosen location.