Why did you decide to earn a degree at Harvard Extension?

We moved to Boston for a couple of years and I wanted to do something fun. I decided to enroll for a semester of Introduction to Psychology. We moved back home before I finished my masters, so I was delighted I could continue online.

How has/will your HES experience help you in your career or personal development?

I totally changed careers; I went from working as a pediatric intensivist to counseling transgender children and adolescents. When we moved back home, I decided to open a practice for children and adolescents with gender identity quests. The practice just boomed; we now work with a team of nine counselors.

What was the most challenging aspect of your time at Extension? What was the most rewarding?

Getting my thesis done in time while I was running the practice full-time was the most challenging aspect of my time at HES, and obviously, finishing my thesis was the most rewarding because of it. But also meeting so many interesting people, fellow students, advisors, and lectures.

How did you manage to balance your studies with work and family responsibilities?

I had to schedule time in our family plan; there were weekends when I couldn’t be available for family life because I had exams coming up or I had to write my thesis.

Do you have a favorite class or faculty member? Why?

My favorite class was Psychological Resilience with Dr. Shelley Carson. It taught me to look at problems as challenges and learn from what goes well instead of what goes wrong. This is the class where I started to rethink my career and wonder if I should do something different.

In which ways did you connect with the Harvard community?

I became friends with a couple of other students from my semesters. Sometimes we would study together and go out for beers after lectures. We are still in touch! 

What types of student resources and special options did you take advantage of as a student at Harvard? How did they help?

Mainly the Harvard online library. I needed the online search tools for research for both papers and my thesis.

Do you have any advice for new students?

If you ever have the chance to enroll in an on-campus course: Do so! Go spend time with fellow students and have fun.

Describe your Extension School experience in one word.