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news psyCH aktuell

What is the “Kick-off Event” of psyCH and what happens there?

You may have heard of psyCH before or at least you have seen some posters or flyers in the corridors of your school. psyCH is a student organization consisting of future psychologists from different disciplines. The goal of psyCH is to promote the interests of psychology students and to unite different psychology circles to create a large national and international network of students. This is mainly intended to serve the networking of different students and professional associations. Besides the annual psyKO and the operation of psyPra, we have other events, such as the kick-off event.

The kick-off event took place in mid-August in Basel, where most of the psyCH members from the 2020/21 mandate met for the first time. This event was about getting to know all new and old members first, but also about some organization. From the schedule of the Kick-off Event, we started with a short overview of “What is psyCH?’”. For example, we got some interesting information about the vision and mission of psyCH which you can find on our website under the “About us” section. We also set some goals for 2021, for example, we want to join forces with other (local or national) student associations for common projects and we want to increase our online and offline visibility, so that we can refer to different events like the psyKo and the psyCH Trainers School.

After the organizational part, we participated in a short but amusing team building program where we shared some stories about ourselves. The activity was very relaxing and it allowed everyone to come together and laugh warmly. It certainly made the day nicer. The lunch was also quite nice because as we all know, food connects people in conversation.

After that, we worked a little bit in our so-called, “Buddy-working session”. During this time, we met with various buddies (our Heads of different disciplines), where we had to clarify some organizational points for the mandate 2020/2021. The Buddy-working session resulted in a nice and large output of information, which each member presented briefly. Finally, the kick-off event concluded in a picture, which can be seen above. In this picture, you can find the course and the goals for psyCH in this and next year.  

We hope this article gave you an understanding of our Kick-off event. Anyway, the experience was very cool, and everybody had the change to participate in the organization and vote anonymously for certain decisions. All in all, The communication was very open, and it was well organized.

Featured image:
  • Weber, A-S., (2020). Kick-off event 2020.

Author : Alexander Ariu

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psyCH aktuell student life

An experience at the Trainers’ School

Roxane is a student who is currently doing her Master degree in health Psychology in Lausanne. She took part in the Trainers’ School of this summer and here is her story.

“I confess that even though I had enthusiastically enrolled in PsyCh trainers’ school on the advice of a friend, I remember arriving in Därstetten, far from home and a bit stressed. Indeed, I was a bit afraid of not having the knowledge and skills to achieve this week of training.

In spite of this, I was still looking forward to learning how to give training and to getting more familiar with original training techniques, which could go beyond the rigid and formal framework of academic presentations. I wanted to stimulate my creativity and develop my skills in managing group dynamics and oral presentation.  It was with this slight apprehension and these expectations that I walked through the door of this large chalet in Därstetten. 

It’s been already a few weeks since I attended this training, and I can truly confirm that it was sensational, so enriching, so dense but so interactive and constructive. Very quickly I forgot my fears and I felt really comfortable and integrated.

During this week I had the opportunity to attend, day after day, lessons about adult learning and oral presentation skills. I also learned progressively how to structure a training, how to define the different stages of reflection that participants should go through, how to set goals, to identify the participant’s needs and to adjust the content of a training according to each person’s experience and expectations. I learned how to give constructive feedback, enriching debriefings, how to facilitate and moderate group discussions.

I learned how to give training, but not from the point of view of a teacher who would know everything and students who would know nothing. One of the things I liked the most during the PsyCH trainer’s School 2020 was the philosophy behind the trainings. The fact that knowledge is built together, and that we are not there as experts. Everyone is an expert and everyone brings something to the training.  It is this idea of participation that I really appreciated. It was lively, it was rich.

I also got familiar with a multitude of equally creative methods to transmit content, to make this transmission dynamic and interactive. To link it with our life experiences so that it is imprinted in our memory for much more longer.

The trainers did an amazing job throughout the week to pass on what they knew and so that we could apply it as much as possible. One thing I also loved was the benevolence that reigned throughout all the week, this solidarity, this complicity. Everyone contributed to create a safe space, where everything was possible and every attempt was constructive and allowed us to learn. I learned in one week so much more, so much better! I will be able to apply all this knowledge, both in my academic cursus and in my everyday life.

For all these reasons, I recommend the experience of participating in the PsyCh trainer’s school. It will allow you to develop original and creative presentation techniques and skills. To transmit knowledge and content in a dynamic and participative way. This experience will also allow you to become part of a team, a family, and create very strong connections. I definitely recommend it.”

Featured image :
  • Pauli, E., (2020). Trainers’ School 2020.

Author : Ardiana Dacaj

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psyCH aktuell

Introducing EFPSA

If you have never heard of EFPSA, then the time has come. This article will briefly introduce EFPSA, list their goals and show you the range of events and services they have on offer for psychology students like you.

EFPSA is the European Federation of Psychology Students’ Associations. In short, EFPSA was founded in 1987 and aims to connect Psychology students’ organizations like psyCH from across Europe. At the moment the Federation consists of 32 psychology Member Organisations (psychology students’ associations like psyCH) and one Observer Organisation (Organisations that may join in the future). The involved countries range from Albania, to Finland, to Luxembourg and many more. 

Through its work, EFPSA tries to achieve the following goals:

  • To serve psychology students
  • To contribute to society
  • To improve psychology
  • To link professionals, academics and students 

These goals are at the centre of the events and services that EFPSA offers. Below is a brief list and description of their events:

EFPSA Congress 

The annual congress is a week-long event, where 350-500 psychology students come together and take part in a scientific and a social program. It is a great place to meet other students from across Europe! (The 2021 congress will be held in the Netherlands)

EFPSA Conference

The conference is smaller than the congress and takes place bi-annually. The focus lies on the scientific program. Last year, for example, the conference theme was environmental psychology and took place in the Czech Republic.

EFPSA Research Summer School

The summer school is a 7-day long event, in which you plan and implement a 12-month study within a team supervised by a PhD. After the one-week program, there is the possibility to be invited into a fully structured 12-month research program. 

Further Events are EFPSA Academy, EFPSA Day and Various Trainer Events (Train the Trainers; Train Advanced Trainers; Trainers’ Meeting; Trainers’ Conference). 

Apart from events, EFPSA also offers various services like a Journal of European Psychology Students, Social Impact Initiative and a section on ‘Study and Travel Abroad’. 

For more information on EFPSA, visit their Website: https://www.efpsa.org/

Featured image

Quelle: https://pixabay.com/de/photos/menschen-freunde-zusammen-gl%C3%BCcklich-4050698/

Author: Sabrina Sovilla

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psyCH aktuell student life

4 Reasons to volunteer in an association

The semester is past the halfway point and the next one around the corner. If you are looking for a new challenge, joining an association might be right for you. The following article lists a few of the reasons some of our members and I joined psyCH and what we have been able to gain from it.

Connecting with others

For me and many others connecting with others was and still is one of the main reasons for joining and being a part of psyCH. Apart from making new friends, it has been a great opportunity to get insight into life at other universities and surpassing the language barriers within Switzerland. 

Insight in different fields of psychology

PsyCH has created ways for me to deepen my knowledge about different areas of psychology. At the psyKo for example, different workshops and lectures let me learn about fields I had never heard of. The same goes for other students I have met through psyCH. Furthermore, as a part of the blog-team writing articles about different topics has the perk of getting to know more about various topics through research. Joining an association is certainly a way to deepen your knowledge on topics that interest you and meeting others who share your passion.

New experiences

Becoming active in an association is a great way to gain new skills and insights. Obviously, these experiences depend on which tasks you are involved in, so the following are about my personal experiences. Being part of the psyKo organization team was challenging but at the same time very rewarding. It was interesting to see how much work goes into a congress behind the scenes and trained my coordination and improvisation skills when faced with challenges. I especially enjoyed having the freedom to turn my ideas into reality. In comparison being part of the blog-team has been an opportunity to work on other skills. There I have been given the chance to work on my writing as well as researching topics that interest me. In conclusion, there are many tasks to be done in associations, so if you are interested, ask around and you are likely to find a task that suits you. 

New opportunities

Associations are a way to immerse yourself in new worlds and find new opportunities that can support you on your way. Before joining I did not know much about psyCH or EFPSA but since I have become a member lots of new doors have been opened. Obviously, many things can also be found on the internet these days but nothing beats a good personal recommendation (which you are sure to get in associations). Two examples of things I have discovered through psyCH are EFPSA and the trainer school. EFPSA is the European Federation of Psychology Students’ Organisations, which organizes a one-week long conference with tons of workshops about psychology every year. Furthermore, it is a gathering of psychology students from across Europe. So far I have not been able to attend the congress but it has been highly recommended by people who have visited it in the past. Apart from EFPSA I was introduced to the trainer school (organized by psyCH), where you learn how to lead trainings on team building, learn more about yourself and much more. 

The above-mentioned points are only a few of the reasons to become involved. If you think psyCH might be right for you, check out our website! We are recruiting new members right now, so maybe you will find a task that is right for you.

featured image

Quelle: https://pixabay.com/photos/figure-puzzle-last-part-success-3277570/

Author: Sabrina Sovilla

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news psyCH aktuell

psyKo 2020

We regret to inform you that psyKo 2020 must be cancelled due to the latest developments concerning the corona virus and the regulations of the Federal Office of Public Health – your health has priority! Those who have already transferred the money will be refunded the amount as soon as possible. It is expected that next year’s congress will take place under the same motto at the same location.

We regret that this year’s congress will not take place and we hope to welcome you all next year.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at any time. Until then we wish you a good time, take care of yourselves and stay healthy!

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psyCH aktuell

Organising the PsyKo – We asked the PsyKo Heads

We asked the PsyKo Heads, who organised the PsyKo 2019 (Selina and Flavio) and our PsyKo Head for the next congress (Yara) some questions about their experience and the challenges of organising such an event.

How did you decide on the topic of the congress? Did you have a personal connection to the topic?

Yara: As a participant of last year`s PsyKo I found it hard to pick my lectures and workshops as the offers were so wide. This is why I decided to pick a topic for this year that is still broad enough to be interesting for many, and trending at the moment. I wrote my bachelor thesis in this area and realized that there is a lot of interest in this field, and not just from psychology. The topic for PsyKo 2020 is “Healthy mind, healthy body –What health means to psychology”.

Who is the perfect participant of the PsyKo?

Selina: Everybody who likes to broaden their network. From my perspective, the most valuable part of the weekend is meeting so many students from all over Switzerland and to have a personal and professional exchange.

Yara: All psychology students. But in my perspective bachelor students can profit even more because the congress allows the participants to have an insight into many different topics, which can help them decide on a path for the future.

What was your experience organising the PsyKo?

Flavio: Organising any event like this one is a huge challenge. Especially in the beginning, when you have to decide from the many possibilities there are. When I look back on it, it was a lot of fun. The motivation grew bigger with every step we took.

Selina: Coordinating the project and the team was a new experience for me. It was very interesting to see how my own leadership style worked with the team, after we built some trust in the team I got used to handing over responsibility to the other members of the team.

Yara: Even though I get support from the PsyKo heads that came before me, the situation is so different each year that, from my perspective, it is still really complicated. During the whole process I have to stay flexible and spontaneous.

What was the biggest challenge to overcome and how did you do it?

Yara: As the team is consisting of students from all over Switzerland, the communication is mostly done by messages and email. In consequence, communication takes a lot of time and energy. I realized I was spending too much time on my phone, and decided to restrict it by giving myself “phone-times“.

Selina: The biggest challenge for me was to have some time off. Taking a break and not answer intermediately had a big impact on the progress of the team. Over the year I improved my time management skills and my prioritisation strategies.

Flavio: The biggest challenge for me was right at the beginning. There were so many options, but not everything was possible and manageable with the budget and the ideas of PsyCH. When we started we wrote a first concept where we defined goals, time objectives, and the size of the team.

What did you learn, both personally and professionally, from organising the PsyKo?

Flavio: I especially learned how to lead a team. It is important to be in communication all the time with the other team members. I as well learned to find solutions in a short amount of time. When you organise such an event you have to face a lot of different problems you never anticipated, and you need to fix them fast.

Selina: It is impressive what you can manage to put together if you focus on it for a year. We started with a broad idea, then we put together a team, and a year later we managed to present this amazing possibility to students to learn and connect. Throughout the process, I could reflect about my working routine, and I learned a lot about both myself and how to work properly in teams, which will be useful for upcoming projects.

What was your motivation behind organising the congress?

Yara: I was a participant of the PsyKo 2019 and I enjoyed it so much. I really wanted to participate in the preparation of such an event for the next year.

Flavio: My motivation was to engage in something next to studying. I wanted to meet people from different fields of psychology and to broaden my experiences with regards to organisation and communication. When I heard about the Co-Head position to organise PsyKo I applied immediately and never regretted that decision.

Selina: I was inspired by Lukas Reichart (ex-VSETH president): “ Who only consumes, does not change anything.” I think such a networking event is essential, especially in the beginning of a professional career. After I participated in the Training school 2018 I knew I wanted to give back to PsyCH. From my work in the association for psychology students in Zurich, I had experience working with professionals to give students the possibility to see ahead into their future working life. This perspective is motivating for myself as well, as it shows me the sense behind my studies. 

Author: Anna-Sophia Weber

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psyCH aktuell

News on PsyKo 2020 and experiences from PsyKo 2019

The registration for the PsyKo 2020 will be open soon but today we are already able to tell you the topic. PsyKo is a congress organized by psychology students for psychology students. You will have the possibility to listen to interesting speakers, participate in trainings and meet students from all over Switzerland. The topic of PsyKo 2020 is “Healthy mind, healthy body – what health means to psychology”.

We asked three students, which attended lasts years PsyKo to tell about their experience:

The PsyKo congress has been an incredible experience: Quite interesting presentations, nice food and amazing new friendships. All in all, I would recommend it to ongoing psychologists. You’ll get to know a lot of people from different parts of Switzerland, you might be introduced to sexology and positive psychology and you will have a lot of fun during social events. (Eileen)

The PsyKo is the perfect opportunity to connect with other students and to learn about the different directions in psychology. I was always looking forward to PsyKo! It is almost like a class trip, only you do not know everybody in advance. But that does not matter at all, at the congress you get in contact so fast and easy. Not only did I meet wonderful people, the PsyKo as well helped me in my career decisions. I decided for example where to do my master after I talked to students from other universities at the PsyKo. As the congress takes place in the middle of the spring term so it was the highlight of my semester: one weekend in the nature, inspiring topics and so many funny moments with people. I can recommend the PsyKo to everybody that is looking for an adventure with many happy people. What stays after the event is definitely the many friendships that started there. I was lucky to participate several times in the PsyKo. Each time I admired the kindness an engagement of the organizing committee. A big thank you to the PsyCH-Team for making this congress happen! (Simona-Victoria) 

Thinking back of PsyKo 2019, I remember all the inspiring people I met and the interesting conversations we had. I felt in good hands from the moment I stepped into the venue until I left. The program offered was insightful and diversified. We had the chance to participate in trainings led by psyCH trainers, workshops with professionals and student lectures. I appreciated it a lot to get this insight into different working areas. On Saturday PsyKo organized a small expo with information tables where professional institutions and associations in the field of psychology introduced themselves and offered an informative platform for networking. As a freshly baked psyCH trainer, I also had the opportunity to lead a training myself which was a great experience for me. The social program was fun and created an enjoyable ambiance during the whole weekend. I enjoyed spending time with so many like-minded people and having the opportunity to exchange thoughts, experiences, and ideas. I remember PsyKo as an enriching event because I gained so much practical knowledge and I felt strongly motivated for my studies afterward. When I participate in other psyCH events now, I always meet familiar faces which is just great. (Christina)

Author: Anna-Sophia Weber

Featured image
  • psyCH (2019). psyKo 2019.