Where is your hometown?
I am from Istanbul, Turkey.
Where did you obtain your bachelor’s and master’s degrees, and what were your major(s)?
I completed my bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Middle East Technical University in psychology and clinical psychology, respectively.
What first interested you in counseling psychology?
I took psychopathology and clinical psychology courses in undergrad given by a professor named Deniz Canel, who is an alum from the Ball State Counseling Psychology program. The courses brought up the topic of multicultural counseling and depathologizing people. I started considering the contextual stressors related to identity and how minorities populations often experience extra stressors that impact how we treat clients.
Why did you choose Ball State?
Deniz Canel was my master’s thesis supervisor and I was inspired by my mentor to apply to Ball State.
What do you think of your experience at Ball State as a doctoral student so far?
I am a first-year doctoral student, so I am still adjusting. I just moved here from Turkey and it has been a bit of a culture shock, but I am adjusting to life in Indiana. It is an intense program and I am working hard, but I am excited for the privilege of the education.
What are your research interests?
I am interested in researching LGBTQIA+ community mental health. I completed my master’s thesis on bisexual individuals, and I think there is a need to talk more about this population and other underrepresented groups in this population, especially asexual individuals, bisexual individuals, and others. It is important to consider how to bring more components for them into psychotherapy.
What are your future plans and career goals?
I want to be a faculty member in a counseling psychology department, and have the opportunity to conduct more research.
What is one lesson you have learned as a graduate student?
I have learned not to procrastinate—haha. I have also learned to use meditation and to remember that I am not just a graduate student, I am also a person. I have so many other functions and pieces of my identity than being a graduate student.
What are a few of your favorite hobbies?
Music! I enjoy editing, mixing, and performing music as a DJ. I love being active in the LGBTQIA+ community and cuddling with my dog.
If you could travel anywhere in the world where would it be and why?
Jamaica because I like to mix reggae music while I am DJing.
What is your favorite show to binge watch?
“Sex Education” and “Friends.”
How do you practice self-care?
Through meditation, stretching every morning, and meeting with friends.