Alyssa Rodemann is a senior Psychology major who recently completed an Honors thesis on perceived life expectancy among college students. She was interviewed by senior Psychology major Jess Baschoff.
UofSHealthPsych: Where are you from, and why did you choose the University of Scranton?
AR: I’m from Bridgewater NJ. Funny enough, I looked at schools with good early childhood education programs. When I came on campus it felt really homey and the campus was beautiful and I liked the size of it. It just felt right to me.
UofSHealthPsych: Why did you choose Psychology?
AR: I took an AP Psychology senior year and it was something that really clicked with me. I knew I wanted to study it more, so I changed my major from education to psych.
UofSHealthPsych: What advice would you give to first year Psychology majors?
AR: One piece of advice is don’t come in with rigid expectations. Keep yourself open minded and take everything one day at a time. Everyone has different experiences and journeys. Take advantage of everything that the University and the Psychology department offer. I’ve been really involved in the Psychology Club and APSSC, which have been great for getting to know other majors and sharing ideas about our interests.
UofSHealthPsych: How did you get involved in research?
AR: At the end of my sophomore year I really enjoyed my research methods class with Dr. Warker and I wasn’t 100% sure about what I wanted to do in research. But I knew I wanted to join someone’s lab, so I asked Dr. Warker and I’ve been the lab for two years now. I was very excited to hear that the department hired another clinical researcher (Dr. Arigo) in 2014. I talked to Dr. Hogan and he introduced me to Dr. Arigo at the Psychology Welcome Back Barbeque at the beginning of last year.
I had been working with Dr. Hogan on a health psychology-related tutorial and wanted someone in that area as my mentor for my Honors thesis. I approached Dr. Arigo with an idea for the project and she agreed to serve as the mentor. I defended my thesis last week, and the next step is to turn my thesis paper into an article for publication. So I’ll be working on that with Dr. Arigo over the next few months.
UofSHealthPsych: What are your plans after graduation?
AR: I have a couple of plans. I’ve gotten into two masters programs, one at St Johns in Queens, NY and Fairleigh Dickinson University in New Jersey. I’m still waiting to hear back from Columbia University about their masters program. Eventually I’d like to get PhD in clinical psychology and join army and conduct research in trauma. If that doesn’t work out, I’ll join the army and figure out my future from there.
UofSHealthPsych: What will you miss about Scranton?
AR: Is it valid to say absolutely everything? I will probably miss the professors because I became really close with a lot of them in the department. Outside of the department I’ll miss walking around campus and seeing people I know everywhere I turn and I’ll definitely miss the close-knit community.