Nicola Mucci, current student

PsyD in Clinical Psychology

“You can’t go through this program and not change how you think about yourself and the world around you. The greatest skill I’ve acquired during graduate school has been learning to think critically and understanding the sociopolitical and cultural context from which ideas emerge."

When she was an undergraduate student, Nicola Mucci studied psychology and fine art. Although she doesn’t identify as an artist in the traditional sense, she frequently engages in the art making process recreationally and, more recently, clinically.

“At some point,” says Mucci, “I realized that making art could be cathartic and that through the creative process I could learn about myself more deeply. That’s when I started thinking seriously about art therapy as a career and eventually came to study at Antioch.”

“While I wanted to study art therapy, I was also looking for a program that would allow me to get a doctorate degree in clinical psychology. I wanted to understand more about the therapeutic change process in all its forms, from art making to contemporary psychoanalysis. Antioch offered me an opportunity to collaboratively design a curriculum that suited my interests and needs as a student and that appealed to me.”

Five years later, she has finished her master’s in art therapy and has nearly completed her Psy.D.

For her, Antioch has been a community where students and faculty have encouraged her remain curious and to think politically and philosophically.

“You can’t go through this program,” explains Mucci, “and not change how you think about yourself and the world around you. The greatest skill I’ve acquired during graduate school has been learning to think critically and understanding the sociopolitical and cultural context from which ideas emerge. Thinking historically has fundamentally changed the way I think about psychology as a discipline.”

Learning to think critically is hard work, she says, but faculty are there to provide support and mentorship. “I have always felt I could lean on our faculty during challenging times. I have a tremendous amount of respect for them and am grateful for the wisdom, compassion, and leadership they have provided over the years.”

As she has moved through the program, she has also noticed Antioch’s growing reputation in the professional community. “When I work with outside organizations or with students from other universities, they often seek out Antioch students for the critical perspective they bring,” she says.

“Looking back, attending Antioch University has been the best decision I have made in my personal and professional life,” she says. “I feel really prepared to begin my professional career. I’m confident in the clinical skills I’ve developed during my training and especially grateful for the knowledge I’ve acquired. Overall, my experiences at Antioch have nurtured the therapist I wanted to become.”