A Long Way from Miami to Vienna: Student Spotlight on Matthew Reyes

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Matthew Reyes

Students come from all over the globe to study at Webster Vienna Private University and we encourage them to explore an education that is meaningful and impactful. We strive to help students realize their dreams by offering programs that set them up for success upon graduation. 

The Master of Arts in Psychology with an emphasis in Counseling Psychology is one of our premier programs that has helped our students discover their passions, set their career paths, and pursue their dream jobs.

Webster Vienna Private University put the spotlight on one of our students, Matthew Reyes, a MA candidate from Miami, Florida. Reyes explained why he chose to study psychology and how his studies will help him achieve his goals. 

A Master's Degree in Psychology Sets a Foundation for Versatile Growth and Understanding 

While training to become psychologists with a sound knowledge of the fundamentals of counseling and psychotherapy, students also study a broader perspective with an emphasis on the importance of multicultural competence in research and practice. Reyes discussed topics he covered in his studies and how they relate to today's globalized society.

"Consider the multitude of fascinating topics under the umbrella of human psychology: perception, motivation, personality, the brain, and cognition or evolution and behavior," Reyes said. "You can even explore the various biological, cultural, and environmental influences on abnormal behavior and the taxonomy of sophisticated disorders. Or you can learn about history's major psychological players, like Sigmund Freud, who paved the way for a deeper analysis of the human ego and its theoretical framework."

With his appreciation for the history of psychology and his anticipation of what is to come, Reyes said he is looking forward to being part of a profession that is constantly evolving.

"Psychology makes it possible for a scientific endeavor to be an adventure," he said. "It is a wonderful exploration of consciousness, and its abstractions keep bumping up against newly developed empirical research on the brain, body, and mind."

Self-awareness Through a Degree in Psychology

The MA degree in Psychology aims to train future ethical psychologists to be sensitive to the cultures, values and worlds of their clients. Students complete a journey of self-reflection alongside their studies to become competent consumers and creative producers of social science and psychological research.

"The appeal of psychology is not the complex questions or the extensive theories," Reyes said. "In truth, the knowledge at stake produces idiosyncratic answers, which means that psychology offers a unique awareness to the person seeking those answers. Answers that, interestingly, are both specific and universal, and which I believe can be applied in any context."

Reyes explained what these studies mean to him in terms of self-reflection and applying these theories to his own life.

"They may not be the answer or the universal solution, but they allow us to explore, to evolve, to pursue a search in a maze of different colored doors and determine for ourselves which key fits."

Student Counseling Services

WVPU psychology graduate students can apply to be counselors at the Student Counseling Services, which is open to all WVPU students, alumni, and employees.

Balance Passions and Interests with Science and Data

Throughout their studies, especially during the 500-hour internship, which is the transition from teaching to the professional field of counseling, students align their passions and interests with a specific career path. Reyes discussed the areas of interest that he explored during his studies.

"Recent studies in the field of psychotherapy have highlighted third-wave psychotherapeutic approaches that are a more holistic extension of traditional approaches, such as acceptance and commitment therapy, dialectical behavior therapy, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, and even metacognitive therapy," Reyes said. "For me, it is imperative to learn more about these different schools of psychotherapy and the associated treatment techniques." 

Linking important personal ideas with supporting data allows students to pursue a career that builds on their true interests and prepares them for a rewarding future. Reyes noted how it felt to make these connections.

"I have always felt like these concepts fit my ideas about the world, but the theory and technology behind it reinforced it even more," he said. "The teachings still serve me today, even in the smallest things. They are a guide to help me be present and promote the well-being of myself and those around me."

Are you interested in earning a graduate degree in psychology?

Contact Webster Vienna Private University for more information!

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