Alumnus Dane Hilton transferred to Appalachian State University after deciding to switch degree programs; at first he was an engineering major but said he chose to pursue psychology instead because he wanted to find a career with a stronger interpersonal element.
Hilton said the switch to psychology and to Appalachian has proved to be one of his best life decisions. After arriving at Appalachian, Hilton selected to pursue more specifically the Psychology (BS) - Human Services degree.
“I was interested in the direct contact side of human services,” Hilton said. “I was interested in helping children and adolescents with psychological and behavioral difficulties, so the human services side fit.”
After completing his bachelor’s degree in 2011, Hilton continued his Appalachian education with the master’s in clinical health psychology, which he finished in 2014.
Now, Hilton is a full-time doctoral student at the University of Alabama studying clinical child psychology.
“My experiences in Appalachian’s master’s program was what made continuing toward my Ph.D. possible,” Hilton said. “I came out of Appalachian’s program very competitive in a highly competitive market and a great deal of that was the training and experiences I got while in the Department of Psychology.”
Specifically, Hilton said that the experiences students gain when they work with faculty and graduate students in a research lab gives them a leg up in any job or academic market.
“Without the close mentorship of the faculty in the psychology department and the incredible experiences the department offers, I would not have been able to pursue my goal of becoming a licensed psychologist,” Hilton said.