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Tony42

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Hello,

I'm looking for some general advice on applications, letters of recommendation, etc. 

I graduated about 5 years ago with a Bachelor's degree in English Lit, during which I focused mostly on creative writing. After a few years regretting that choice's limitations, some wandering, lots of strange jobs, and a few personal crises, my own experiences in therapy have helped me to realize that I want to pursue a Master's in Counseling or Social Work, with an eye toward working as a mental health counselor. I understand that most programs in this field accept students who do not have a Bachelor's in a directly related field, but I'm wondering what I should focus on in order to be a competitive applicant. I've gotten pretty good at selling my Bachelor's degree as having imbued me with powerful critical thinking skills, and have gotten a few jobs on the basis of my writing ability, but I'm new to the grad school thing and I'm not sure how to sell what feels to me like a career change. 

I think I can use my personal experiences with therapy to make a pretty compelling case in a personal statement for why I want to take this path and why I would be right for it. But one thing I'm really unsure about is letters of recommendation. I didn't take any psychology classes in undergrad, and most of the professors and instructors that jump out in my mind as people who would happily write me a letter are creative writing instructors, and I'm not sure how relevant their letters would seem to the programs I'm applying for. 

Any advice on how to frame myself as a competitive candidate (and especially who I might consider asking for letters of recommendation) would be much appreciated!

Thanks!

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You can still ask your creative writing professors for a letter. They should be able to speak to your ability as a student, even if it's in another field. Do you have any previous or current supervisors who could write you a letter as well? Especially someone who could speak to your interpersonal skills. 

You can sell your bachelors the same way, as there is a lot of writing and critical thinking in psychology. I would frame it as you want to apply these skills to a field that is better suited to your goals or something to that effect. 

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36 minutes ago, sivakumaranandan said:

Just but the words that establishes your interest and credibility in the past working experiences. The rest will fall in place. Also get strong recommendations from relevant professors. 

The OP already mentioned that they didn't have "relevant" professors. 

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@Stereopticons , Thanks for sharing your understanding. Looked like the candidate was not certain about the profs acquaintance with topics of interest. I meant to assert that relevant professors would be appropriate and adding value to the aspirations.

Edited by sivakumaranandan
Typo
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