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School of Social and Political Science: Graduate school


Student Testimonial 6

As an undergraduate Psychology major at a small, prestigious Liberal Arts college in the US, most of my studies focused on psychological, social, political, and educational issues concerning children. I volunteered at the college’s nursery, and I did independent studies in the Infant Laboratory on campus. I knew that after graduating, I'd want to continue my studies and eventually find work that would position me to make a positive difference in children's lives. After an exhaustive search of graduate programs both in the US and abroad, I identified the Childhood Studies program at the University of Edinburgh as the right program for me. I was intrigued by and interested in the curriculum and faculty, and valued the international outlook the program offered, in terms of course work, theoretical framework, and fellow classmates.

The Childhood Studies program met (and exceeded) my expectations. It gave me a solid understanding of children’s rights from a global perspective, and I learned how to conduct research with children in an ethical manner. The program also provided me with connections to organizations in Edinburgh, where I gained real-world experience with government and community groups and policies. Additionally, my classmates included people from all over the world, including the US, UK, Nigeria, Germany, Greece and Japan, which made classroom discussions varied and interesting. The classes, readings, and interactions with professors and fellow students were personally enriching and furthered my understanding of and commitment to children's rights.

Since receiving my MSc degree, I have had varied and interesting employment. Soon after graduating, I gained employment as a Research Fellow at a university in Scotland, where I was involved with a project about how young children learn to use new technology. I called upon the skills I developed in the degree program to create and implement data collection and analysis techniques with the preschoolers and their parents. Upon my return to the US, I continued working in research, this time at a non-governmental criminal justice research and policy organization based in New York City. The specific project I worked on dealt with foster children with HIV/AIDS who were involved in clinical drug trials. Currently, I am a Program Coordinator at a non-profit health center in New York City, which provides adolescents in low-income communities with free, confidential, and comprehensive health care. The main focus of my work here is research, grant-writing and other compliance issues.

Earning the MSc in Childhood Studies has enabled me to find work that I value, work that I feel is making a positive difference in the lives of children and young people. As a graduate, I value the personal growth I experienced as a student in the Childhood Studies program; I appreciate the connections I formed, both personal and professional, and the skills and credentials I gained.

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