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Mark Griffiths

BSc (Hons) Psychology with Counselling and Mental Health
Graduated 2014

Portrait image of Mark Griffiths

How did you progress your career after graduation?

I started working as a healthcare assistant at Chase Farm Hospital in Enfield. This is a medium secure mental health unit and I worked on one of the rehabilitation wards there. I moved to Broadmoor Hospital six months later to be a healthcare assistant on the wards, where I worked for two years before getting into the centralised group work service. I got the assistant psychologist role in November 2018, and then I moved into a new role within West London Hospital.

What does a typical day at work look like for you?

There is no ‘typical day’ working at Broadmoor Hospital. That is one of the main reasons why I love my job and will continue to work in the field of psychology. I have different roles and responsibilities within the hospital, such as a team role on a rehabilitation ward as part of the multidisciplinary team, an individual case load of service users I see on a weekly basis, facilitating group therapy, supporting the psychological services with referrals or assessments, supporting various projects around the hospital, and more. There are a wide variety of opportunities available for career development at the hospital.

How do you feel your studies at Solent helped you prepare for your career?

I think university life helped me to develop my confidence and independence which readied me for the start of my career in mental health services. I think the lecturers who discussed their clinical experience, along with the theory and practice of psychology, really motivated me to want to pursue a career in the field of psychology.

It's so important to be able to find something to allow yourself to feel compassion towards others, but also it’s really important to be compassionate towards ourselves.

What advice would you give to those wanting to work in this or similar areas?

My advice would definitely be to have patience and humility. Progressing into careers in psychology can be slow – it’s very competitive. I worked for a good few years as a healthcare facilitator and it’s easy to feel stuck in the wrong job. When I reflect back on those experiences, I am very grateful for them – they allow me to have a deeper understanding of life on a ward and the challenges faced by both staff and patients. So a lot of patience is needed. I also think, because psychology is such a competitive field, being grounded enough to support, and be supported by, other people who are trying to get into similar roles is so important – we’re all in this together and we can learn a lot from each other.

What's the most important thing you have learnt in your career?

To have compassion. It is so important to be able to find something to allow yourself to feel compassion towards others, but also it’s really important to be compassionate towards ourselves. We are all human, all have emotions, all make mistakes, all feel out of our depth at times. If you just try your best and pick yourself up, rather than being self-critical, you will be surprised at what you can accomplish.