Claudia Zohorsky, M.S.
The emphasis of the school to rigorously prepare students for clinical practice, coupled with the mentorship model of the faculty and welcoming culture of IPS, is truly an exceptional combination.
Psy.D. student Claudia Zohorsky, mother of nine and triathlete, eyes a career in psychology now that her children are grown.
“After having fully enjoyed raising and educating a large family over three decades, I began to discern how I might be of continued service during the next stage of life.
Up until that time, I had been dedicated to our family, homeschooling our five boys and four girls, competing in a few Olympic Distance triathlons, and cantoring at our parish. While teaching at home, I had been able to work part-time with a virtual K-12 national public school based in Baltimore under Sylvan Learning (then known as Connections Academy).
Life had been so full that I knew as the youngest children were preparing to leave for college, I would not be satisfied without a long-term, purposeful career path moving forward.
So, capitalizing on a B.A. in religion from Mount Holyoke and some graduate-level courses in philosophy and theology through Holy Apostles seminary, I began the search for a meaningful career that would incorporate some of my personal experience and education.
Being of service to a larger community through the study of psychology as informed by faith was the primary draw when choosing to pursue a degree at the Institute for the Psychological Sciences.
IPS attracted me for several reasons. First and foremost, the mission to integrate the field of psychology with Catholic anthropology is groundbreaking. The insight this orientation provides has the potential to further the field as a whole on the macro-level, and to better accompany patients with a keener view into human nature on the micro-level.
By structuring and rooting the clinical process in a more comprehensive understanding of human development, the IPS integrative model provides a scope previously unattained in the field of psychology. It addresses the whole person by framing each patient’s unique circumstances with a view toward flourishing.
In addition, by considering each patient’s history from a vocational stance, this model has the advantage of situating the patient’s concerns in a broader context and taking the patient’s life purpose into account.
Finally, the effect of bringing a Catholic perspective to bear on clinical work fosters a deepened appreciation and regard for the patient, as a child of God. The goal to help patients see themselves and interpret their lives through the lens of God’s love by imbuing professional psychology with a Catholic anthropological foundation significantly enhances the potential for therapeutic healing and personal integration.
The qualities I most appreciate at IPS are the richness of the curriculum design, and the mentoring style of the faculty. Students are treated with respect and a sense of collegiality that is tangible and rare.
This milieu spreads to the community of students who are remarkably supportive of one another, academically and socially. The unique culture, curriculum, and vision of IPS also attract dedicated faculty, accomplished in their own right, with varied backgrounds and expertise.
The emphasis of the school to rigorously prepare students for clinical practice, coupled with the mentorship model of the faculty and welcoming culture of IPS, is truly an exceptional combination. There is no comparable graduate-level program in psychology today.
My years spent raising a family of nine children were profoundly fulfilling, helping me to recognize the satisfaction of fostering others’ lives. Pursuing a degree at IPS represents the opportunity to be of service to a wider community in a meaningful and poignant way. At the same time, the potential impact of IPS’s mission on the culture at-large is both terrifically compelling and exciting!
After graduation, my goal is to strengthen family life in modern culture, through building a family outreach center and writing.”