I did intakes and interviewed prisoners about their attitude towards their crimes and prison time. In the beginning it was quite hard, the offenders did not really like to talk about their crimes and many rejected counselling, but as time went on it became easier and I really liked it, so I decided to apply for the master.
The master is interesting. Next to theory courses, we also had a lot of practical seminars. There was a professional actor who would play offenders. We would interview him in front of the class. Afterwards we got feedback from the teacher and classmates. It was really great to work with him and after each session I had the feeling I was better prepared for the job.
Now I am finishing my thesis (which is only 11 credits) and I am about to start my internship (19 credits). This time I will not work with offenders, but with people who lived through terrible experiences. I am going to work at the psychiatry department of a military hospital, with many patients being soldiers suffering from PTSD, but also civilian patients and victims of crime. I am very excited but I feel quite prepared after the master. Of course, I am going to make mistakes, but that is okay; I will learn a lot.
A great thing about this master was the small amount of students, only 23. Everyone knew everyone, also the teachers knew everyone by name. There was a great atmosphere, I made friends and the teachers were very good. We also had guest lectures from experts in the field, for example from a psychotherapist who worked in the forensic field for more than 10 years. It was very interesting to listen to them, because they knew what they were talking about.
Martin Kansy, (Bonn, Germany)