What students are saying
The fully online Master of Science Degree in Child & Adolescent Behavioral Health (MSCABH) at the University of South Florida prepares professionals to serve in public and non-profit agencies and schools that work with diverse children and adolescents experiencing behavioral health challenges and their families. Read below what one of our first students in the Youth and Behavioral Health Concentration, Kari Klein, has to say about the program.
An interview with Kari Klein, student in the Youth and Behavioral Health Concentration
Why did you choose the MSCABH program at USF?
- The University of South Florida attracted me with its specialized programs, growing community, and highly recognized education system. As a young professional, I could really see myself growing in this exciting field. Also, the flexibility of an online program allowed me to continue traveling while working on my degree, which was ideal since I’m living abroad now until graduation at least!
Tell us about your undergraduate degree.
- University of Central Florida (UCF), Psychology
When did you decide that you wanted to work in the field of children’s mental health?
- I worked as the Program Assistant for the Applied Experimental and Human Factors PhD Program at UCF for a little over a year, and always found the field interesting, but I was constantly putting myself in research labs that were more industrial/organizational focused, applied experimental. I even tried human factors research, but was never as excited until I joined the anxiety disorders clinic working with kids. I realized then that I needed to do what I loved. It wasn’t until I moved to Austin, Texas and worked at a behavioral hospital that really changed my interest from clinical psychology to specifically children’s mental health.
Have you had any experiences working in the field of child and adolescent behavioral/mental health?
- I’ve done some research on children with social phobias when I worked at UCF. As a Mental Health Technician in Texas, I guided patients through day to day activities, talked to patients who ranged from detox to schizophrenia, coordinated with registered nurses on protocol and frequent changing hospital procedures. It made me realize that we can’t keep on doing what we are doing with mental health patients regarding staﬀ, funding, and treatment. All of these core areas need improvement.
What do you hope to achieve with this degree? Do you have a dream job in mind?
- I can see myself as a director or supervisor for early education programs abroad. Since early identification and intervention programs aren’t abundant, it may be hard to start with a clean slate, but coming from the United States where a lot of effective programs have been implemented, I could at least show that there has been proven success if I was trying to implement programs abroad. I can act as a liaison between departments and managers to create change and design and implement strategies to resolve issues with patients, communicate goals and expectations with other supervisors and workers in the field, and provide a clear vision for strategy and convey precisely what is needed in whatever community I work in.
How have your experiences been so far going through this-program?
- This degree has allowed me to grow and take up a chance to spread awareness and work abroad. I am constantly pushing the limits and seeing what I can do outside of my comfort zone, and this degree has put me in the right direction.
If you are looking for a degree that can train you to create change in mental health, then apply for this program. If you are an avid learner and want to take that love for improving the lives of those affected with mental health by becoming a director or supervisor, go for it!
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