Why I Chose Psychology As My Major
I am Sean Sokler. I am an unusual George Mason college student. I am autistic. I have virtually no verbal language. I have to type or spell out everything I say and think. I attend classes with the help of my assistant, Angela Natale.
When I first started George Mason in the fall of 1999, I was just happy and overjoyed about attending college. My initial focus was figuring out how many classes I could handle at one time, and how I could do the work required for the courses. What the courses were and what my major might be seemed less important. However, my assistant, Angie, and I worked out those things pretty well, and therefore I was able to decide what my major should be.
Initially, I chose a general studies focus. I finally decided, however, to major in Psychology. I had taken some psychology courses at George Mason, and I had found them interesting. Psychology is the social science that studies human behavior, human emotions, and the human mind. Because I am autistic, my mind is very different than virtually everybody else. I react in different ways, have different emotions, and have emotions that are probably more intense than everyone else. There are some things I do not understand at all. I thought that majoring in psychology might help me both understand my own mind and behavior better and also help me understand the world better.
I have been happy with my choice. I have found many of the psychology courses, particularly behavior and adolescent psychology, interesting. Because of my physical and emotional issues, I have found that taking the experimental psychology courses, along with their laboratories are more difficult. I also like facts, which I find easier to learn, so I have also taken many history courses.
As to the future, that is a very, very difficult question. I will always be autistic. I will always need help. I want to do something to assist, and advocate for, people like me. I hope what I have learned in psychology will help me achieve that. However, I still need to think, learn, and search more for what opportunities I will have in my future.