Alumni Profiles

Cyriesse Williams | MA

Graduate of the Master’s in Mental Health Counseling program*

I discovered psychoanalysis during my undergraduate studies while taking a class on Freud. At the time, I was majoring in neuroscience and had an interest in the brain and mind but couldn’t decide if I wanted to be a therapist, doctor, or a researcher. This class on Freud piqued my interest immensely and I knew this was what I wanted to study. However, I thought the only means of accessing psychoanalysis was through medical school, in the field of psychiatry. I was unsure if I wanted to commit to that path and spent a couple of years working in research. During that time, I stumbled upon the Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis while doing a google search online. I was excited to know that I could forgo medical school and get directly involved with psychoanalysis.

While enrolled at BGSP, I found the class readings to be rich with theoretical content and the class discussions provided a novel level of emotional complexity. My mind was opened to new understandings of human behavior and interactions. But most importantly, I learned more about myself than I ever thought possible and realized I still had much more to learn!

I found the faculty to be invested in my personal growth in a way I had not encountered before. They were incredibly accessible and worked hard to help me understand the complexities of theory. They also provided a thorough clinical foundation by giving regular and timely feedback regarding fieldwork and internship cases. At BGSP, I also encountered other brilliant minds in my classmates so that I was able to learn in a multi-axial way, at times, bouncing ideas about complex cases off fellow students and faculty alike.

Although I enjoyed my experience at BGSP, the real benefits of the program manifested once I began working in the field. I noticed I was able to tolerate and manage more difficult emotional experiences with my clients than other practicing clinicians. I attribute this to the unique process learning style at BGSP where students are taught how to sit with difficult emotions. I found myself equipped with techniques for handling difficult cases. I am now enrolled in the doctoral program where I am deepening my understanding of clinical practice. I feel incredibly fortunate to have stumbled upon this beautiful community and look forward to the things I will learn in the years to come.

*This degree is now entitled Master of Arts in Clinical Mental Health Counseling