I talked to Amelia Jazienicki of The Expat Experience about my life as a student and as a psychologist in the United States. I told her how I studied in Italy first, was an exchange student in Norway and at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, and then at the University of Chicago to pursue my PhD in psychology where I studied sleep in aging. We also talked about my training to become a clinical psychologist in Boston. We spent some time comparing my experiences between Chicago and Boston, and university life between Italy and the United States. I shared which parts of the US and which cities were my favourite. I described the challenging experiences I had training at a hospital for veterans and at a day hospital that hosted group sessions on life skills and coping mechanisms. I discussed the exceptional support system I received in both my academic and professional pursuits. I told the story of how I returned home to Italy where I have been back for eight years. I also talked about whether or not I would pursue expat life again. Lastly, we explored how priorities can shift, offering words of wisdom for aspiring expats.
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“The training that I received in the United States was absolutely exceptional: it was a learning experience every single day. I was dealing with very difficult cases … but I received a lot of support and encouragement from my supervisors.”
“In the United States I worked in many places, in different settings, with a diverse population, and with supervisors of different orientations. Therefore my training felt really complete. From that experience I gained confidence in my ability and in my work.”
“Although I very much enjoy my life in Italy, I would consider being an expatriate again because of the sense of adventure and discovery. Discovering new places and new ways of life, and meeting new people is very exciting.”