Alexis Georgeson is a third year PhD student studying Quantitative Psychology. Her research focuses on psychometrics, longitudinal design, and substance use in adolescents.
What made you pursue a graduate degree?
Like most psychology majors, I initially wanted to be a clinical psychologist. At the time, I had no idea what a PhD was, but within my first few weeks of school, I realized I would need one in order to be a clinician and I began volunteering in labs in order to have a shot at graduate school. Eventually I realized that I actually liked research, but I didn’t know which area of psychology I wanted to pursue. I took a class about quantitative psychology in my junior year and became really excited about the material. I liked that quantitative psychologists focused on the process of doing psychological science and I knew that in order to do this, I would need to get a PhD.
What’s the thing you love most about Chapel Hill?
I don’t think I can choose one. I love UNC’s campus itself because it is so beautiful and walkable, and the psychology building is right next to the arboretum. I also love that there are so many neat events around campus that are usually free, like concerts or talks.
If you had any advice for someone thinking about pursuing a graduate degree, what would it be?
Take a year or two off in between undergrad and grad school and get a job. I think it’s important to have the experience of not being a student and it will give you time to see whether you really need to get that graduate degree to have the career you want. I think it is also important to have that time to reflect on your experience as an undergraduate and to come to see yourself as an independent adult.
What is your dream career after you’ve completed your studies?
Getting a tenure track position at a R1 university with a quantitative psychology program is the dream!