Zain SalehAlumni Spotlights

Portrait of Zain Saleh
Hometown: Basra, Iraq
Major/Minor(s): Psychology major with minors in English, and Leadership & Communication
Graduation year: December 2016

How did you decide to major in Psychology?

Before coming into college I knew I wanted to help people, but I did not know exactly what field to enter. I started doing a little bit of research and realized that a Psychology major is applicable to many different fields. With that information, I knew I could help people in a multitude of ways- I just had to find the right one for me.

Tell us about where you currently work and what you do there:

I work at the Clyde Malone Community Center in Lincoln, Nebraska, as the Youth Program Coordinator. The mission of the Malone Community Center is “to honor and strengthen the African-American community in Lincoln and Lancaster County while serving as a cornerstone for educational, cultural, and advocacy programs for all people.” I run the day-to-day operations for our kids at the Malone Center; I select which drivers go to which schools to pick up kids, communicate with teachers regarding our mutual kids, set up the kids’ daily schedule, and making sure each day goes as smoothly as possible. The biggest project I am currently working on is creating the Summer Program.

How did being a PSYC major equip you for the workplace?

I think what I got out of my psychology degree was how to relate to people, how to talk to people, and how to figure out what makes people “tick,” or motivates them. All these skills help me a lot in my career because I work with such a diverse group of people and a very diverse group of children.

Recommendation to current PSYC students:

If I could recommend one thing to a current student it would be to get involved in research. I was able to complete a UCARE project which helped to foster my interests and skills in research and provided me with an opportunity to work closely with the incredible faculty at UNL.