Applied Statistics: Student Testimonials

Ian Jr. Il Won

Specialist: Mental Health
Minor: Applied Statistics

What factors contributed to you choosing your program(s)?

I had a significant interest in the field of Mental Health. I was confident that this is a field in which I wanted to pursue my career in as I was interested in helping people with various mental health challenges. This program offered in University of Toronto Scarborough gravitated me into applying to this school, as I was confident that it would extend my knowledge in assessing, diagnosing, and treating various mental disorders. While I was in the process of taking the program requirements to finish this specialist, I came across the statistics courses that were needed to finish this program. These statistics courses stirred up my curiosity as I found another interest and skill in which I wanted to keep on studying onwards.

Can you describe your program(s)? What is it actually like?

This specialist in Mental Health is going to provide a deeper understanding in the clinical aspects of Psychology, mainly focusing on the pathologies of the mind. Mental Health Studies allows for exploration in the different etiologies of mental illnesses and the extent to which it impacts the brain. This program provides opportunities to assess, diagnose, and treat various mental health challenges. Studying statistics helps to practice the fundamentals of statistics, to collect, organize, analyze, interpret, and present data. Certainly, it enhanced my quantitative skills, and the ability to minimize uncertainty in decision making. There are a variety of courses they offer in the field of Mental Health and Statistics, here at UTSC, which allow further understanding in aspects like research methods, clinical-based approaches, etc.

What tips/advice can you provide to students just starting or considering this program(s)?

1) Stay organized. Make sure you know your program requirements and plan it out. Volunteer opportunities, part-time jobs, extracurricular activities, having a social life, personal commitments, and maintaining a high marks require a large time commitment so, prioritize and plan it carefully.
2) Always make relations with professors in your courses. Make an effort or take the initiative to talk to the professor, especially when you are interested in applying to Master programs or post-graduate studies. The professors will more than gladly help you by answering questions about post-graduate studies. If you are not at this point, then look into the research the professors are conducting. UTSC offers work study opportunities, which allow you to explore the different research studies and career options, while gaining hands-on experience by working alongside the professor and other students.
3) Enjoy what you study and explore. There are so many great opportunities in which you can connect and obtain information about possible job careers. While taking electives or program requirements, there are bound to be areas in which stir your curiosity and may help narrow your career path. Try and explore the different extracurricular activities you can participate in these diverse and numerous clubs and events will lead you to gain extraordinary skills which are helpful in the work force. Eliminate the paths you are sure you don’t want to pursue your career in, that way you can narrow your search. Ultimately, pursue in the path you are gravitated towards.

What will you do with your degree after graduation? (Future plans?)

Specializing in Mental Health and having a minor in Applied Statistics allows you to apply your knowledge and the science of psychology to their assessment, diagnosis, and treatment as well as having deep understanding in designing effective experiments. These programs allow both experiential learning in two separate areas in which I believe I can integrate the key skills that I obtained for what I want to do in the future. I hope to pursue my career in research positions in which I can transfer my knowledge from my statistics minor while constructing and analyzing data. Ideally, I would want to find a career in which I can implement all the skills that I have gained and built from my Mental Health Specialist and Applied Statistics Minor.

What has your academic journey during your time been like as you progress toward graduation?

In the first year of my studies, I took the program requirements for mental health, as well as business, economics, and math courses as I had a grave interest in this field at the time. During this year, I explored the different extracurricular activities that UTSC offered and joined a number of them. When second year came around, I began taking mostly the program requirements for my mental health specialist. In third year, I leaned toward the cultural-psychology courses as that was my main area of interest. This was the year in which I decided to do a minor in statistics; therefore, I took the second and third year courses to completing this minor. I believe that there was a big jump from my second to third year in my studies, in terms of work load and course content. My fourth year contained the last courses in finishing my specialist in mental health and minor in applied statistics. It's been a long and tough journey yet; I know that my time and effort paid off considering how far I've come and by knowing which path I am headed off to.