Rutendo Mhonda

BSc (Hons) Psychology and Counselling, Class of 2020

Graduate profile

How are you feeling now that your time at Abertay is coming to an end?

I am feeling ecstatic and proud to have attained my degree and have enjoyed my time at Abertay. I received a great deal of support and encouragement from lecturers over the years, which I’m grateful for. The faculty at Abertay are welcoming and will be missed

Of course, it was disheartening to not have finished university in the way most of us final year students anticipated due to the coronavirus pandemic. However, I’m also pleased for my fellow classmates and wish them all the best in their future endeavours.

Read more below.

Rutendo Mhonda - BSc (Hons) Psychology and Counselling, Class of 2020

Why did you decide to study at Abertay?

I was really attracted to the prospect of studying a British Psychological Society accredited Psychology degree combined with practical counselling modules. Additionally, Abertay felt like the right choice due to the fact that class sizes were small and I felt confident in the university’s ability to support students’ learning. I am looking forward to applying the research skills and counselling skills I have developed, both in the workplace and in further study.

Furthermore, Dundee is well-renowned for being sunny, vibrant and very accommodating for student life, and these were additional benefits.

You were active in several societies, can you tell us about that?

Yes, I joined the African Caribbean Society (ACS) as a member when I began studying at Abertay which allowed me to meet other students on campus. I then went on to start Abertay Make Up and Beauty Society (AMBS) and I served as its President for two years. By working together with the treasurer and secretary, we successfully organised various activities for the student population, and encouraged others to socialise and make friends in a safe environment.

In my final year, I then joined the ACS committee and served the role of Social Media Representative. The committee worked well together. I enjoyed this role because I was able to further enhance my social media skills I had gained from managing AMBS to communicate ACS current information and events, and encourage engagement.

How much did being part of societies add to your university experience?

I could not imagine my university experience without being actively involved in societies. University can be highly stressful, and taking part in societies allowed me to destress, and improved my psychological and emotional wellbeing. Additionally, I was able to build on several skills. These include communicating effectively, time management, and bettering my confidence and capabilities. Overall, joining societies allowed me to interact with those from different backgrounds and walks of life. I have had great conversations, and have learned many things from socialising with others from diverse backgrounds. Being involved with so much at University and still graduating with a First has felt really rewarding!

What’s your long term ambition?

In terms of career ambition, I would like to become an intersectional Clinical Psychologist as I am driven by working towards improving others’ quality of life and enhancing general wellbeing in society. My dissertation investigated the influence of the Strong Black Woman Stereotype on depressive and anxious and stress symptomatology in Black women residing in the United Kingdom. I found this research to be insightful. Conducting a supervised independent honours project reinforced my desire to pursue a career in which I am enhancing psychological, emotional and physical wellbeing. I recently began an online platform called “So We Glow” on various social media platforms in which I unpack psychological processes underlying mental health outcomes in the Black community. “So We Glow” was sparked by material I read while completing my degree, particularly my dissertation. While the platform is new, I do hope that it grows into an informative and educational resource.

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