The following article was a review of the UOP Psychology department but I re-titled it "They Couldn't See Past the Cheese"
Psychology is the study of man, specifically the mind of man, how he thinks and behaves. Beginning in the 1940's the study of psychology at colleges increased dramatically, and I thought it would be interesting if I ambled over to the psychology department to learn something about UOP's department.
The first thing you learn is if you value your time and don't want to take the chance of waiting for a particular professor who is free to talk then you would be well advised to schedule an appointment in advance. A "drop in grab 'em if you can" attitude isn't wise. I tried it a few times, with no success. The professors were gone in the morning and in the afternoon and when they were in, I was in class. After waiting 30 minutes or longer for a professor to show up whom I could interview, I left the department. Nothing Zilch. "Try again tomorrow," I was told by an office worker.
Returning the next day, I met Annette, a graduate student, who was nice enough to allow me to ask her a few questions about her psychology major. Annette has a double major in psychology and business. Why did she decide to major in psychology?
After some hesitation and apparent pontification, she replied, "I think it's applicable to a lot of different fields."
The next day I wandered through the psychology department's hallways looking at various bulletin boards. On one wall were diagrams explaining different facets of our perception process. On another wall I noticed several pictures. Rats! I saw pictures
of some white rats with their beady little eyes practically popping out of their sockets, positioned as if they were posing for the camera that captured their worried look. Didn't these little creatures know they were being used as experiments for some behaviorist's stimulus-response theories? Obviously, they could't see past the cheese.
I wandered down the hall looking for a room with the lights on, hoping to find that elusive professor. No luck. After peeking through the professor's offices and poking my head around every corner of this maze, I began to feel like the hopeless rat
trying to find the cheese. My patience and diligence must have paid off because at about that moment a distinguished looking man turned the corner, heading in my direction. I was hoping he was the light at the end of the tunnel. My assignment had left me weary and lackadaisical but I couldn't let my teacher down so I turned around quickly and said, "Excuse me." The man looked around, stopped momentarily and I said again, "Excuse me, but do you by any chance teach psychology?"
The man looked at me suspiciously. "Yes, why?" he said.
"Well, you see, I need to find a psychology professor to interview for a story I'm doing."
"What kind of story?" he asked, probing further.
"I'm doing a story for Dr. Anema's news writing class. I was wondering if you could give me some information about the department and..."
He walked away from me clutching a handful of paraphernalia under his arm and motioned for me to follow him.
"You mean you have the time?" I said enthusiastically.
"Sure, I have some time," he replied.
We walked around the corner to his office. The name posted on his door was Roger C. Katz.
"I just have a few questions here." I said as I sat down.
"Psychology majors filter into a variety of jobs working in the business field," said Dr. Katz.
"Does the psychology department have a consensus with respect to a philosophy of psychology?" I asked. "For example, do most professors view man as basically good or evil? Do you hold the individual responsible or is society to blame for his problems?"
Dr. Katz shifted slightly as he formed an answer.
"Most professors in this department subscribe to a form of behaviorism. Generally speaking this is the theoretical viewpoint or model that would explain human behavior."
"Aren't students' opportunities for getting work in their major field limited unless they have a M. S. or Ph. D?"
Dr. Katz quickly corrected my thinking. "Not true. In order to call yourself a psychologist you must have an advanced degree, but through B. A. degrees students can get jobs. We send several people to the Silicon Valley. Students work in mental health facilities, schools for the handicapped and similar places."
"Thank you for your time, Dr. Katz," I said as I gathered my notes and book into my backpack. As I followed the labyrinth back to the front entrance I stopped in front of the picture of those rats and stared wistfully at them.
"You poor little weary guys," I said to myself. "If you only knew where the cheese was you'd have half of your problems solved."
Carlton Pruitt ministers the gospel to the Los Angeles area. Formerly a Hollywood actor (SAG member)and junk removal expert he now spends most of his time studying the scriptures, writing articles, hymns and poems and doing street preaching.
See his videos on http://www.youtube.com Type LAStreetPreacher in the search bar. CONTACT at Carlton2061@gmail.
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