Psychology students in IMU do not only concentrate on academic excellence but also apply psychological theories into real life settings by organising university events such as raising awareness on mental health. By doing so, they build up their soft skills in leadership, team building, and communication as they broaden their views and knowledge to choose their future career pathway to becoming full-fledged psychologists. The Psychology programme at IMU had a very fruitful year in 2019 and our students have had many opportunities to put theory into practice. The year started off with a bang in March when IMU organised Malaysia’s first public conference for youths to reach out to parents, educators, and mental health practitioners to address pressing mental health issues faced by youths. The Our Society, Adults & Youths (Our S.A.Y) conference was jointly organised by the Psychology Department, Psychology Club, IMU Cares, and Dignity for Children Foundation. The conference incorporated four major contemporary issues faced by society, namely, depression and anxiety, bullying and cyberbullying, substance abuse and addiction, and also healthy relationships and harm reduction.
|May||The 9th IMU Psychology Ethics Forum with the theme of “Professionalism and Ethics in Online Psychological Practice” was conducted by the IMU Psychology students as a learning platform to learn issues of ethics and professionalism from experienced and professionally trained panels. Talks on the pros and cons of providing online psychological services from a clinical psychologist, counsellor, and a marriage and family therapist’s perspectives was shared. There was also sharing of the opportunities for anyone who is vulnerable to reach out to certified counsellors on secured websites for e-counselling services.|
|September||The IMU Department of Psychology collaborated with Oregon State University (OSU), USA on a cross-cultural counselling project. With the theme of “Bridging the Gap Among Mental Health Practitioners’ in Serving Severe and Persistent Mental Illness Clients”, the series of workshops were attended by more than 90 participants on managing suicide, addiction, mindful based cognitive therapy (MBCT), school counselling, managing and supporting trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder clients, and supporting clients living with schizophrenia.|
|October||The Psychology Club hosted a Model United Nations (IMUxMUN) conference bringing together over 170 participants from both government and international schools and universities. Youths from more than nine different nationalities came together to discuss ways to reduce the stigma surrounding mental illnesses. Topics regarding the basic rights of people with mental illness were discussed as they are expected to tolerate discrimination, segregation, and judgment from others.|
To round off the year, the 10th IMU Psychology Ethics Forum was held in December on “Ethical Issues in Mental Health Services”. The focus was on educating and creating awareness of the malpractices among mental health professionals, and to promote mutual understanding and cooperation between different entities of mental healthcare professionals as well as to increase the routes for accessing mental healthcare among the public.
All in all, it was a great year for the IMU Psychology programme in 2019. We are excited and looking forward to what’s in store for 2020!