A Michael Davidson

Michael Davidson

”Representation matters. Knowledge creates understanding.”

College: Education
Degree Program: Counseling Psychology and School Psychology
Degree: Doctorate

Awards: McKnight Doctoral Fellowship (2023)

Why FSU?

I chose to attend FSU for several reasons: FSU is an R1 institution with world renowned faculty who value interdisciplinary collaboration, the faculty are actively engaged in research that interests me, and the student body is diverse. It is important to me for an institution of higher learning to have the resources to support scholarship, growth, and development within a field; FSU excels in this area. Of equal importance to me was finding a program, the Counseling Psychology and School Psychology (combined Ph.D.), and a group that resonated with me; I found this at FSU.

Motivation to pursue a graduate degree

My motivation to pursue a graduate degree was rooted in my desire to become a mental health professional and my passion for research. Academia trains individuals to ask and answer thought provoking research questions. I knew I needed additional education to take on this task.

Importance and/or impact of research and work

Minoritized populations are often the greatest at risk for adverse outcomes and experiences. My research is involved in exploring the vulnerabilities, exacerbated by discrimination, within these populations to understand how to develop tools and strategies that could aid in overall improvement.

Career aspirations

I would like to become a licensed psychologist, continue my research with marginalized populations, and teach/train future psychologists and organizations. I aspire to obtain a tenure track position at an R1 institution, creating change through education and access to affirming mental health care.

Advice for anyone considering graduate school

Consider your career aspirations and create a path to accomplish your goals. If a graduate degree would enhance or improve your likelihood of success, then apply. What you are passionately inquisitive about? Select the faculty you want to work with based on their research projects and interests; these should align directly with your own research interests. Apply to schools where you identified faculty/research of interest. Seek out relevant experiences (volunteer, work, research, advocacy, etc.).

Accomplishments during graduate career

Over the course of my graduate career at FSU, I have received the following forms of recognition: PFLAG Scholarship, PURPOSE Fellowship, Point BIPOC Scholarship, and the McKnight Doctoral Fellowship.