Like many students, I found the APPIC process daunting, but worth it in the end. I experienced an early elation at receiving interviews. I am a returning adult pursuing a second career, and I was unsure how that might play out in the eyes of those reviewing my applications. I am quite sure there have been older graduate students, but I encountered only younger applicants during my interviews. I have more life and work experience than my younger counterparts, but this does not always seem to compete with the solid accomplishments that many of my counterparts had already made very early in their careers.
I found that the APPIC process caused me to look at the lingering doubt I had in myself being able to finish my doctoral program. I was excited that I received the interviews, but also dismayed by fellow students in my program who I felt were just as qualified as myself receiving none. I felt like I knew even less about what to expect on interviews if students who I thought were well qualified had not received interviews.
The logistics of what I was about to embark on quickly became a reality. I found a phone app that helped me organize travel itineraries and hoped for the best with the January weather. There were several hitches along the way, but the worst actually happened traveling to my WKPIC interview. I was delayed in Chicago due to poor weather conditions and had missed an interview. I was placed on another flight and thought I was underway until there was a loud thump as the plane backed up. The plane began moving back toward the gate and that was when the entire plane of delayed and tired passengers let out a collective groan. We soon found out that our plane had backed up into a truck, and once it was determined that no one was hurt, jokes and laughter abounded. The accident was actually considered a plane crash and we all remained on the flight until an investigator dismissed us. I pretty much stepped off my flight from Chicago to Nashville, into my rental car and drove to Hopkinsville (thank you GPS). I had already called WKPIC while sitting on my “crashed” plane to alert the interviewers I might be running a bit late.
I of course made it to my interview and was even on time within 5 minutes. I had taken the idea of finding a good fit to heart, and at this point tried to interview sites as well as having them interview me. I feel like one of my stronger interviews was at WKPIC because in part, I was literally too tired to be anxious. I was drawn to WKPIC because they treated applicants so well during the interview process. One of the psychologists complimented me on an answer to an interview question. I actually still carry that compliment with me. Current interns smile and laugh that WKPIC definitely fed us better than other sites. I noticed a group of psychologists who seemed to enjoy being with one another. I saw a culture of acknowledgement, dignity and respect during my interview. My thought during ranking was that if I was acknowledged and respected in an interview, this was likely part of the culture at WKPIC. I have certainly found that culture to hold true as an intern.
Rain Blohm, MS
WKPIC Doctoral Intern