Profile by Samantha Dexter
Melissa’s time at Pace
Melissa found herself at Pace University because of its proximity to her home in the Bronx, and also because of a scholarship that she had been granted. During her time at Pace, Melissa enjoyed the quaint atmosphere of Pleasantville and exploring the many surrounding towns with her friends.
Melissa majored in film and English with a concentration in creative writing. She speaks highly of her time in classes taught by Professor Poe, and valued the creative freedom that the classes provided. Her desire to be more engaged in a person’s story combined with her interest in psychology led Melissa to consider a career in social work.
Melissa graduated from Pace in 2012 and decided to take a year for herself, when she enrolled in creative writing classes around Westchester county. She then attended graduate school at Fordham.
What Melissa is doing now
Melissa found her niche in social work. Currently, Melissa is working for a company that places social workers in high schools and middle schools, where they provide therapeutic services to adolescents and children.
As a therapist, Melissa prides herself in being able to provide a safe space for each individual to share their story. She connects this to her background in English and creative writing. Using narrative therapy and her analytical skills, Melissa seeks out patterns and helps her students make sense of their actions. During our interview, Melissa stressed the value and the relevance of the skills that she gained in English classes in her profession.
In the future
Melissa hopes to acquire her next license and become a clinical therapist, but she is content with her career. She admits that she has not been able to write much in recent times, but she intends to change that.
From her own experience, Melissa says that English degrees are more versatile than one might think. For Pace students who are approaching graduation, Melissa offers her advice:
“It’s okay to not know what you want to do.”
It’s a common fear to not know exactly which path to take, but she wants to reassure graduating seniors that it will soon become clear.