Class of 2016

Some of our recent 2016 Graduates share their thoughts on completing a postgraduate degree at the Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families

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Louisa, DPCP        Mauricio, DNP       Rachel, DPCP       Ritika, DPCP        Emma, PDP       Maggie, PDP    

What did you take away from your experience as an Anna Freud Centre postgraduate? 

If I had to pick one favourite element of my Anna Freud Centre postgraduate experience it would have to be being part of the Anna Freud Centre community and particularly my DPCP year group. (Louisa, DPCP, 2016)

I am not really sure where to start…everything about the PDP course was exceptional! The toddler observation module was definitely my favourite and I feel very privileged to now be working as an assistant within the same group that I observed. (Emma, PDP, 2016)

I learnt so much in the two years I studied at the Anna Freud Centre. But, the most important lesson I learnt from every lecturer, teacher and my supervisors, is that there is no right answer.  Every person in the world is different, we cannot apply a blanket theory to everyone, we can only find what works for each individual person once we get to know them. But, we will find patterns and patterns are important, they show us that we are on the right track with being able to support and help more people. (Rachel, DPCP, 2016)

So many things! The course completely changed my perspective on a lot of things, right from diagnosis to the importance of cultures and contexts to how to negotiate the subtle aspects of therapeutic relationships. I truly feel the course enhanced my sensitivity to others, my ability to think critically and generally helped me grow as a person.  (Ritika, DPCP, 2016)

I really enjoy all the observations i had through out the course, both baby and toddlers. The experience of closely following the growth of baby and a toddler was amazing. (Maggie, PDP, 2016)

In terms of learning experience: The journal clubs and constant group discussions were something completely new to me that helped me develop my critical skills immensely.  Personally: Studying in a building (and an institution) with such a historical background. Nothing like studying and working at the AFC library! (Mauricio, DNP, 2016)

What do you wish you had known prior to starting the course?

Before I came onto the course with limited knowledge of psychoanalytic theory.  But, I did learn,  I learnt to appreciate past theories and acknowledge the importance of developing ideas to fit modern society. Reading about psychoanalytic theory, the root of all modern psychology, led me to be able to hold multiple perspectives about every child and young person I work with each day.  I think I would say to the younger me “ Take your time, don’t rush it, be open-minded and maybe in two years time you will find yourself on the tube reading ‘The Future of an Illusion’ by S. Freud.”  (Rachel, DPCP, 2016)

That although the courses are very challenging, everything turns out fine in the end as the staff and faculty members are very open and helpful (so don't worry). Also, to keep my mind as open, speak up and ask as many questions as possible; bouncing ideas with others was definitely the biggest learning resource.  (Mauricio, DNP, 2016)

I wish we had been given the possible topics for our MSc dissertation prior to starting the course to give us more time to think about what project we would like to do. (Louisa, DPCP, 2016)

Where are you now? What are you doing?  

I am currently working one day a week as a voluntary counsellor for the Schools Counselling Partnership, one day a week as a toddler group assistant within the Anna Freud Centre toddler service and three days a week at a nursery in Primrose Hill. (Emma, PDP, 2016)

I am currently working as an Assistant Psychologist in Tower Hamlets CAMHS.  (Louisa, DPCP, 2016)

I am currently working as an Assistant Psychologist in First Steps, Hackney Community CAMHS. First Steps is an early intervention service, focused on working with children, young people and families to manage and promote positive mental health in children and young people who present with mild to moderate mental health difficulties. The experience and knowledge I gained from the masters has helped me every day with both the challenges and joys when working with families. (Rachel, DPCP, 2016)

Right now, I am working at a not-for-profit organization in Mumbai, India as an Autism Intervention Therapist.  (Ritika, DPCP, 2016)

I'm a first year student of the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at University College London. (Mauricio, DNP, 2016)

Where to next? 

I hope to continue to develop my skills as a clinician within my current role, whilst continuing to conduct research with the Anna Freud Centre and within services. I aim to one day become a qualified Clinical Psychologist potentially specialising in parent-infant relationships, maybe one day I will return to the Anna Freud Centre where my journey started…(Rachel, DPCP, 2016)

After qualifying as a Clinical Psychologist I hope to get some more clinical experience in the UK to bring back home (México) some aspects of the NHS mental health model. I am thinking of opening an Evidence-Base Practice unit at home to develop clinical psychology research. (Mauricio, DNP, 2016)

I am planning to apply to both the Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy Doctorate and the Clinical Psychology Doctorate. (Emma, PDP, 2016)

I would like to do a PhD/Mphil in the future, with the aim of hopefully doing both research and clinical work in my career. (Ritika, DPCP, 2016)

I plan to acquire enough network through my work and hopefully I  can invest in a children-related industry in the future(education/ medical/ baby product...) (Maggie, PDP, 2016)