Ostrow: ‘My First Salaried Position in This Economy Is Exciting’

By Purnell T. Cropper | September 28, 2010

By Sarah R. Schwartz ’10

Psychology major Liza Ostrow ’08 is taking her first steps as a working professional. A 2010 graduate of the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, she will be putting her M.S. in Counseling and Clinical Health Psychology to good use as the newest Outpatient Therapist at the Drenk Center in Mount Holly, N.J.

Armed with an impressive résumé, it was Ostrow’s connections that got her hired so soon after graduation. “Networking really is, in my case, as I was told countless times, the best way to get a job. I am so excited that this is my first step in a career in which I will become skilled enough to make a significant, positive impact on someone’s life. Also, obtaining my first salaried position in this economy is exciting on its own level!”

Ostrow first realized her passion for Health Psychology as an undergraduate student at Arcadia. She initially was drawn to Arcadia’s Physical Therapy program and enrolled in the pre-physical therapy track as a Psychobiology major. Speaking from her personal experience, she advises students and graduates, “Don’t trap yourself in a vision that may no longer fit the person you have become. Leave yourself open to new ideas and possibilities.”

While she was gaining clinical experience her sophomore year, Ostrow noticed a substantial need for mental support for patients afflicted with illnesses and injuries. When she changed her focus, she was met with guidance and encouragement from Arcadia faculty and staff who helped her to achieve her goals and graduate on schedule.

“I was blown away by the support and mentorship I received from members of the faculty. They believed in me before I believed in myself and helped me realize my potential,” she says. Ostrow specifically notes the support of Dr. Lester Sdorow, Assistant Professor of Psychology, and Dr. Dennis Gallagher, Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning Assessment. “I felt comfortable asking questions or obtaining help when it was needed, even if it was only moral support and not classroom-related.”

Fully prepared for her graduate studies, Ostrow was chosen to complete her practicum requirement at Temple University Hospital’s Department of Behavioral Health and Psychiatry, where she had the opportunity to conduct psychosocial evaluations for the Transplant and Bariatric Surgery departments. She even participated in a research project with the kidney transplant team. “It was an exceptional experience and really prepared me for a career in health psychology and mental health,” says Ostrow.