We caught up with James Finn, one of the graduates of our BA (Hons) Person-Centred Counselling and Psychotherapy 2014-2017 Cohort.
Before Starting the Course…
Before I undertook the course I ran my own business as a vehicle technician, so a complete contrast to counselling. However, I also worked part-time as a coach and mentor as I have always loved interacting with other people and helping them develop.
Why I chose Counselling
For me, there were a variety of reasons why I chose counselling. Perhaps the main reason being a life-changing event. Also, my years working as a vehicle technician I’ve come to realise that I sometimes spent as much time talking to the customer about their life problems as I did repairing their vehicle. I found that people naturally gravitated to me for that very reason.
My reason for choosing the person-centred approach and Warwick? Whilst working as a coach and mentor I wanted to develop my skills further and undertook a basic level 2 counselling course. The tutor running the course was person-centred and I fell in love with the approach. I further enrolled for another year at a level 3, before deciding that enrol at Warwick which is where the tutor trained, as she spoke highly of it.
Studying at Warwick
The Warwick course is life changing at every level. And anything life changing is challenging. And yet it was one of the best decisions I have made. It enables you as a person to develop both personally and professionally. For me, it has developed personal authenticity and my ability to challenge others as well as myself.
I did not really have a favourite part of the course. I embraced it all. There are elements that stand out such as working in groups and personal journal assignments. These enabled me to develop my own self-awareness and awareness of how others experienced me. My experience of Warwick is one that will always continue with me.
If I were to offer any helpful tips about the course, my main one would be a squeeze as much as you can from the course as it has so much to offer. This will be challenging, but from my experience, you will come out feeling more authentic and self-aware with a greater capacity to face the challenges life has to offer. I am aware there is so much more to say, but I will finish by stating that it is an experience to be had.
Graduation and Beyond
I gained employment very shortly after graduating working as a children’s counsellor. I am also in private practice too. I would also like to share what I found to be very helpful in gaining employment – volunteer in as many counselling areas as possible. Not only does this help with experience and development as a counsellor, but also helps you stand out with employers.
Advice to Future Applicants
If you are going to enrol on the person-centred degree do it with commitment and a willingness to be challenged. It is truly a fantastic experience and one that will always remain with me.
Find out more about our Counselling courses offered at the University of Warwick