This International Women’s Day, we want to celebrate the strength shown and success achieved by some of our most inspiring female students. Read Deborah’s story.

Psychology student, Deborah, wasn’t always hoping to pursue a career as a psychologist. While studying to qualify as a nurse she fell pregnant and, incredibly, sat her final nursing exam when she was in her final trimester.

While expecting her first child, Deborah had other troubles on her mind besides nursing exams; stuck in an abusive relationship, she knew she needed to get out.

“I was struggling with what I should do,” Deborah explained. “Malta (where she lives) is a very small island and being a single mother is still frowned upon.”

“Once I got the courage to [leave] I felt so happy and free. I knew I was doing the best thing for me and my daughter; I felt empowered, strong, and started looking at life differently. I had more confidence in myself and what I wanted to do.”

While coming to terms with her experiences, Deborah started visiting a psychologist. She now cites wanting to help people who are experiencing similar things as her reason for pursuing a career in psychology.

“[My psychologist] made me feel so strong – she gave me that extra push. I just wish to have the power and knowledge to help people in the same way,” Deborah said.

As well as studying for her degree in psychology, and raising her three-year-old daughter, Deborah works as a nurse in an operating theatre.

Exactly how does she keep so many different plates spinning?

“I am a big believer in timetables. I have everything timed: studying, workouts and playtime with my daughter. I have help from my mother, but I try to stay as busy as possible. Having a timetable motivates me.”

Deborah is now on the path towards becoming a qualified psychologist – and all because of her own journey and desire to help others.

Her message to woman around the world on International Women’s Day: “No matter how hard it seems or what mistakes you made, you can still achieve your goals. Always keep pushing yourself further and support women around you.”

Join the conversation about International Women’s Day on social media using #PressforProgress #IWD2018

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