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Morgan Moran, Psychology, Undergraduate

Service learning helps psychology student prepare for career

Morgan Moran | Psychology, Undergraduate | Department of Psychology From the moment she stepped on campus, Morgan Moran knew she wanted to be an IUPUI Jaguar.

The high-energy and urban environment first drew Moran to IUPUI, but it was the Honors College that made the university feel like home.

“I get this big urban feel, but within that is a smaller place where I can really know the people and advisors,” says Moran, an Adam W. Herbert Presidential Scholar.

As a freshman, Moran became active in the Honors College as a mentee then later as a mentor. She also held leadership positions in the award-winning IUPUI chapters of Alpha Lambda Delta and Phi Eta Sigma National Honor Societies.

Moran, a Psychology major, is studying to be a Child-Life Specialist, a pediatric care professional who works with children and their families through difficult situations such as long-term hospital care, illness, and disability.

To complete her degree in the highly competitive field, Moran had to log at least 100 observation or volunteer hours to qualify for a final internship on top of making excellent grades.

Moran’s passion for helping children and volunteering led to her to devote not only the required hours for her major, but over 1,000 hours of service throughout her undergraduate career. She accredits IUPUI for providing students a variety of volunteer opportunities.  

“When I lived on campus, I was able to get up and walk to Riley [Hospital for Children] and volunteer,” says Moran, “That’s not the same convenience you get at even another college in Indianapolis; we have so many opportunities right at our back door.”

Moran incorporated several service learning courses into her schedule. These courses are designed to give students credit while engaging them in organized service activities to encourage civic responsibility. She says these courses provided her with a wider range of volunteer and networking opportunities.  

One service learning experience took Moran to Cartago, Costa Rica with the Honors College. While there, she and other Honors students volunteered at an orphanage, an experience she attributes for teaching her she is capable of utilizing the skills she learned in the classroom to various situations.

When asked how she balances such a rigorous schedule, Moran says, “Make sure you find something you’re passionate about because after that it’s no longer work when you care so much about it.”

She says her support system played a big role in her success.

“The Honors College staff has been a huge support,” says Moran, “I feel like if I didn’t have the Honors College, I wouldn’t feel the same support and that could have been discouraging along the road of accomplishing my goals.”