Getting to know... David Bakker
Name: David Bakker
Title: DPsych (Clin) Candidate, Provisional Psychologist, and Tutor
Faculty/Division: Medicine, Nursing, and Health Sciences
Department: School of Psychological Sciences
How long have you worked at Monash?
I began my DPsych (Clin) at the start of 2014 and started facilitating consultations and lectorials at this start of this year.
Where did you work prior to starting at the University?
After completing my undergraduate and honours studies, I worked for two years with Anglicare Tasmania as a mental health outreach worker.
What do you like best about your role?
Engaging with first-year psychology students and showing them the fundamentals of psychology is extremely rewarding. You can’t help but think about how they will use these principles throughout their lives.
Why did you choose your current career path?
I have always wanted to pursue a helping profession and I enjoy exploring and understanding people’s lives. This is both applicable to psychology and also to teaching students. A lot of teaching is understanding the students and tailoring your help to them.
Disability support worker with Anglicare Tasmania.
I’m not sure if I’ve had one… However I do perform stand-up comedy and there have been a few gigs over the years that I’d rather forget…
What research/projects are you currently working on and what does it involve?
Right now I am very focussed on developing a mental health and well-being smartphone app called MoodMission. We will collect data using the app to validate it as an effective tool to help users find better ways of coping with low moods and anxious feelings. Please check it out at pozi.be/moodmission.
What is your favourite place in the world and why?
There is something magical about Hobart that still captivates me everytime I go back. MONA, just outside Hobart, is also a pretty amazing place. But internationally? Definitely Berlin.
What is your favourite place to eat and why?
There’s an awesome vegetarian restaurant in Launceston, Tasmania, called Fresh. It is run by some incredible people and I used to run comedy nights there before leaving the state. It is one of my favourite places too. If you ever go, have the haloumi - out of this world.
What is the best piece of advice you have received?
“Build the ability to just be yourself and not be doing something. Build the ability to just sit there, like a person, and be OK with it” - Louis C.K. talking about smartphones as a metaphysical distraction.
Tell us something about yourself that your colleagues wouldn’t know?
One of the most fun things I did this year was to see all three movies in The Dark Knight trilogy back-to-back at IMAX. It was an incredible Batman experience that I still think about daily.