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Reporter, Hickory Daily Record, NC
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- Pepperell Free Press Features Samantha Hardy '13 (Psychology) and Her Mission to Ease the Trauma of War
Pepperell Free Press Features Samantha Hardy '13 (Psychology) and Her Mission to Ease the Trauma of War
July 3, 2013
Nashoba Publishing - 6/14/13
By Chelsea Feinstein, firstname.lastname@example.org
PEPPERELL, MA -- Samantha Hardy has never been content with being average.
Hardy graduated from Curry College last month, where she captained the soccer team, maintained a 3.5 GPA and participated in the ROTC program. She received a bachelor's degree in psychology, with a minor in communication.
In August, she will begin working toward a doctorate in military psychology at the Adler School of Professional Psychology in Chicago, while being a member of the Army Reserves.
"I didn't want to do the normal college thing. I always wanted more of a challenge," she said. "I've tried to set a good example for my younger siblings, tried to set the bar high for them."
For Hardy, joining the ROTC began as a logical path, a way to pay for college and be guaranteed a job after graduation.
But it became a passion, with the ultimate goal of helping ensure that those in the military would have access to counseling in the wake of traumatic wartime experiences. She plans to be a military psychologist for an army battalion after she receives her degree.
Hardy said that the increase in servicemembers with post-traumatic stress disorder has raised the demand for psychologists. In fact, she said, psychology is the only department in the military that has grown despite budget cuts.
"This war is so different from other wars. Having to look people in the eyes and shoot them... The military is having to compensate with providing different types of counseling," she said.
Psychology is a career path Hardy has wanted to pursue for years. As she puts it, "As the oldest of five, I've always sort of been a psychologist."