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Updated on December 22, 2017

What is a Residency?

I am SO excited! I get to go in about 1 ½ months to Orlando, Florida for my first doctorate residency. I can’t tell you how long it has been since I was an 8 year old girl who said I was going to be a doctor. OK, so I won’t be a medical doctor. I can’t afford the time or money to go to med school, but after 41 years, I’ve got just a couple more years before I obtain my PsycD in counseling psychology!

Can you imagine how much work there is involved in this? You would not believe the amount of reading that is involved in such a venture. You have to setup your courses, you have to decide when to read all that mounting text and data, learn new stuff: like statistics, and find your way around campus or online school courses. I took what I think is the easy way out, and am attending courses online. It is easy, for me, but it seems that there are those who are struggling with the simple things like how to write in English.

Back to the residency! I had to book a hotel for the trip and that was not very painful, except that I had to know I could afford to pay for the room on student income, which is non-existent. I went to all those online services where you can find cheap rates for expensive hotels and I think I did well. Tracking down a hotel within close proximity to the convention center was another problem. Orlando, Fl is a pretty big place and kind of confusing if you have never been there.

I don’t know what to expect at all, and once I find out I’m certain to write up some document on what to expect for the next poor student who finds themselves in my position. I’ve bought all new professional clothes in anticipation and am hitting the treadmill so that I am in good shape to fit into them, and to stand around or stay awake, or whatever there is to do with one of these. I am excited to meet some fellow students and especially some of the staff. I have a good handle on what I want to do for my dissertation and would love the opportunity to talk face-to-face with professors and PhD’s in the field to find out how I should go about the process. Do I work during these 4 days? Do I stand around and network? Do I take notes? What shoes should I wear? What clothing? I got that one: business casual. I’m going to be very professional, and pay attention so the next one; a 2-week residency won’t be as difficult to go through because I’ll know what to expect. Gosh, I hope there will be one in Houston!

As for lodging, I’ve got that wired. I’m an old pro at getting hotel rooms. I used to travel for a living. I loved staying in Baton Rouge, LA. They had some very nice and clean hotels right off Interstate-10. I even went as far as Chicago and West Virginia in my travels that required lodging for the night. Florida, South Carolina, and California also were parts of my travel, either for pleasure or for employment.

Looking for appropriate lodging is as easy as finding those booklets at the visitor’s centers of each state. They have coupon deals, little maps of the major metropolitan areas and even little maps of other towns where there is available lodging for travelers of all kinds. Could you imagine not having that kind of information with you when you drove across the country or flew in from some foreign land? I would be so lost if it were not for visitor’s centers, the internet, and friendly strangers. Each can give you good information as long as you are ready to do your own legwork in the process.

After all, no one really wants to help those that don’t wish to help themselves, do they? At least not when it is not that hard to find out for yourself!


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