|Degrees:||B.A. Psychology (Carleton U)|
Tracy Saxton earned a Bachelor of Arts Honours in Psychology in 2010, and, following graduation, successfully applied to law school. After a change of heart, Tracy decided to turn her part-time position into a full-time career right here at Carleton University.
Tracy currently works as a Financial Aid Administrator in the Awards Office at Carleton University. She is the current Chair of the Procedures Committee for the Ontario Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators. Tracy also helps give back to the Carleton community as a Therapy Dog Handler.
Carleton’s Bachelor of Arts in Psychology prepares students to understand the mechanisms that underlie the thoughts, feelings, and behaviours of people. Such an understanding not only has theoretical value, but also the potential for practical, real-world applications.
“The faculty each have a unique approach to the classroom which makes each course fun and exciting. The program offerings are broad and provide a very thorough and diverse background in psychology, while offering specializations to best prepare you for your career. The campus and amenities are second to none and student support and resources are unparalleled.”
– Tracy Saxton, Bachelor of Arts, Honours, Psychology (’10)
Do you have a favourite memory of the BA program at Carleton? A favourite psychology professor that had a big impact?
I have a lot of very fond memories of my program and professors. My favourite…was Professor Matthew Sorely. He was my Intro to Psychology professor when I was in first year, and in my upper years I selected courses he taught as often as I could. He was very approachable, and genuine, and made the classroom a very comfortable place to be.
What did you do after your BA?
After my BA, I applied to Law school, was accepted, and ultimately decided it wasn’t the right path for me. At the time, I was working part-time at the Awards & Financial Aid office at Carleton University, and was lucky enough to continue in a full-time position. I have advanced my career within the office, moving to my current position of Financial Aid Administrator and Chair of the Procedures Committee for the Ontario Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators (OASFAA). I have recently become one of the new Dog Therapy handlers in the Dog Therapy program/mental health initiative at Carleton with my dog Moose (Carleton.ca/wellness/dogs)
Were there any skills that you learned in your BA that assisted you with your job?
I worked for undergraduate recruitment as a telecounsellor and transitioned into working at the Awards & Financial Aid Office. My Bachelor of Arts (degree) has provided me a great foundation and skill set for my current roles within the University. Specifically:
- Identifying personality traits in students and staff and shifting the way in which I communicate and respond to best suit the relationship/situation and audience
- An understanding of mental health issues, symptoms and treatments has helped me work more effectively with, and understand a student’s needs in relation to financial need applications, appeals, academic progress etc.
- Having a deeper understanding of mental health symptoms and the best resources to direct students in need for the best assistance
- More generally, it provided me empathy and a genuine understanding of the student experience which has allowed me to better relate to students I work with in my current role. It taught me the importance of time management and organization
- Being able to identify risky behaviors in individuals and introducing support resources early to best support students
- Understanding the difference between situational stress and anxiety and deeper mental health issues
Do you have any advice for any students thinking of doing a BA in Psychology at Carleton?
I would highly recommend the program. The professors are all amazing, and inspiring. They each have a unique approach to the classroom which makes each course fun and exciting. The program offerings are broad and provide a very thorough and diverse background in psychology, while offering specializations to best prepare you for your career. The campus and amenities are second to none…student support and resources are unparalleled.