Graduate Student Corner: New Faces - Joshua R. Oltmanns
I first learned about SITAR as a master’s student in psychology at Villanova University, through my advisor Dr. Patrick Markey. I was able to attend the 2013 meeting in Park City, Utah and the 2014 meeting in New Haven, CT.
As a master’s student, it was helpful for me to attend the conference for many reasons. First and foremost, the research presented at the conference was fascinating. There was a lot of excitement in the ideas and lines of investigation that were presented, and the presentations were outstanding. Second, the small size of the conference made it easy to meet other people, which was important for applying to Ph.D. programs. It was my experience that the attendees of the conference were also interested in getting to know me, which is not always the case at large conferences. I met people from across the world in my research area that I have been able to stay in touch with. Third, the conference felt like the reunion of a group of friends who have known each other for years (and they have!), but I felt welcomed and included. Networking is made easy at SITAR. Finally, there are so many leading researchers that attend the conference. The size of the group compared with the impact of the group is incredible. These things together make SITAR a conference that provides something more unique and personal than other conferences.
At SITAR, meeting and listening to more advanced students was one of the best parts. I obtained a better understanding of how to apply to Ph.D. programs and how to pursue a career in research. I was also lucky that there were many professors at SITAR in the field of research that I hope to pursue. Talking with them and hearing their presentations and discussion contributed to my understanding of the field. And it was nice to have met some of the people that I later applied to work with!
It was immensely beneficial for my career to attend SITAR. I have made connections that I hope to maintain for many years and I have become aware of fascinating research that is going on across the world. It is fun and exciting to keep up with research that I learned about at SITAR, and I look forward to my next chance to attend the conference.
Joshua R. Oltmanns
Clincial Psychology Graduate Student
University of Kentucky
Lexington, KY, 40506