Path to becoming a therapist

by Kayla
(Texas)

Hello!

First, to begin with my background information, I am a junior in high school, trying to find my way into the world. I have depression (in which I am medicated for) and knowing what it can be like, it is the last thing I want for another person to experience. This is why I want to go into art therapy (especially as I am an artist and I believe expressing emotions through art is powerful), and cognitive behavioral therapy. But I have no idea where to start and how to get to that point!
So for my question, can you please lead me in the right direction? Any recommendations on colleges? What I should major/minor in? Anything that will get me to the point you stand in today? Thank you so much! I greatly appreciate it!
~K

Ben's Answer:

Thanks for your question Kayla. I would suggest that you start with a major in Psychology. There are so many colleges, it's beyond the scope of what I can recommend to you here. Choose a college that feels good to you, the right size for you and probably one that has a lot of arts focus as well. Doing a minor in art could be a good combination. Just know that many people who go on to graduate school to pursue their degree in psychology and get licensed as a therapist, do not necessarily start with a psychology undergraduate degree. Some might do a liberal arts degree, a sociology, anthropology or philosophy degree or any number of other possibilities. But in those cases, doing a minor in psych might be in your best interest. Grad school is where you really get into the full depth of psychology and human behavior and development. You don't have to know about all those options at this point. There are many paths toward doing art therapy.

You should also take a look at the art therapy board website: http://www.atcb.org/

Wishing you great success!

Ben

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May 16, 2015
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Re:
by: Kayla

Thank you so very much! It is such an honor to not only speak to you, but to get advice from you as well! Especially with all that you do, like this website. It's all so amazing. People like you inspire me to even more want to make an impact on other's lives. You show me that it is possible. I appreciate that more than words can tell!
Thank you again and I'm wishing nothing but the best for you.
~K

That's very nice of you to say Kayla. I'm happy to be able to help. Feel free to let me know how things turns out with school.
-Ben

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