Professional Interview

Specialization of Choice
Psychology is the study of the mind, along with such aspects of mind as perception, cognition, emotion, and behavior. Psychology covers a broad range of concentrations from addiction psychology, family psychology, and health psychology. I chose to pursue my PhD in General Psychology because I am able to design and individualize my education based on my professional interests.
Long Term Goals
Currently I hold a Masters degree in Counseling and I am studying for my Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) exam and looking forward to opening my own private practice focusing on clients dealing with addiction and/or family issues. Because I am able to individualize my education, my focus area of study is both addiction and family psychology. Addiction Psychology will provide an understanding of the theoretical and practical knowledge relating to the main factors influencing addiction, including biological, social, cultural, psychological and economic perspectives. Family Psychology will provide me with the application of psychological methods to advance knowledge related to family research, patterns and processes, and assessment and intervention, as well as to policies relevant to advancing the quality of life for families.
With this specialization I am able to integrate psychological theory and practice, using scientific methods and evidence-based practice to apply my knowledge and skills about research and evaluation as a therapist. I do understand that this specialization will not prepare me for licensure as a psychologist, but it will enhance my knowledge in addiction and family psychology as a therapist. The requirements of the program include three three-day colloquia, core courses, specialization coursed, and seven electives. My plan for completing the requirements is ensuring that I follow my degree plan and staying in contact with my advisor on a regular basis.
Considering the fact that I already have my Masters that will allow me to become a Licensed Professional Counselor in Texas, this program will offer me with additional knowledge and skills in the addiction and family focus area. With this additional knowledge and with my PhD, becoming an online instructor is another career choice that interests me. Ten years from now I see myself with my own private practice specializing in addiction and the family and teaching online graduate courses.
Psychology Professional Interviewed
The Psychology professional I interviewed is a Child Psychologist here in the Houston area, Dr. Shevonne Malvo. She has been a child psychologist for the past 5 years here in Houston and obtained her PhD from the University of Houston. I chose this particular person because she was one of my graduate professors that I maintained contact with after obtaining my master?s degree. She has been a valuable mentor and gives wonderful insight in the field of child psychology. Dr. Malvo enjoys her job and believes that kids have a great sense of humor; they use play to work out problems in a way that adults would never think of. ?Working with kids and young adults, there is a lot of room for positive development; we know much more than we used to about the prevention of serious problems.?
Today, as the mother of a small child, she prefers the time flexibility of a private practice, allowing her to focus on clinical work, which is her ?true love.? In her general child psychology practice, Dr. Malvo sees 3- to 18-year-old clients and their families, focusing primarily on cognitive, behavioral, and family therapies. She works extensively with anxiety disorders, stating, ?That?s one of the most common disorders for both children and adults, and one that often goes untreated, even though we have good treatment strategies.? Dr. Malvo also helps children adjust to changes that may be going on in their families such as divorce, depression, and common life-stress.
Like most private practitioners, Dr. Malvo manages the administration of her own business ? the daily phone calls, billing, and paperwork. She notes, "Administration and working with insurance providers can be a challenge. I've chosen to be on panels for those insurers that I feel most comfortable with, and this limits who can access my services. I also have sliding-fee scale slots that allow me to provide services to some kids who would not otherwise be able to see me." She reports that some of the hot topics in child psychology today are addiction and the family, ADHD, bullying, eating disorders, and autism just to name a few. She reports that these topics are the most common