PCOM PsyD Student Connects Voice Acting to Psychology
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Sounds Like Success: 
PCOM PsyD Student Sees Connections in Voice Acting, Psychology

March 11, 2024

Headshot photo of PCOM student Meghan StrangeWhile graduate students often juggle personal and professional commitments with school, few send voice recordings to TV shows or education programs before heading to class.

But for professional voice actress Meghan Strange, a second-year student in the Doctor of Psychology program in Clinical Psychology at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, it’s a relatively common occurrence. On a recent morning she emailed a voice clip to the education platform ABCmouse.com to use on their social media channels.

A native of Northeast Philadelphia, Strange attended Syracuse University for musical theater, inspired by actress Bernadette Peters, and started her career in the mid-’90s with theater roles, including in the Woody Allen musical Bullets over Broadway.

“I was very certain of what I wanted to do and where I wanted to be,” Strange said. “In between then and now, there were years I was not so certain.”

Strange worked in and around New York City and Los Angeles for the majority of her career, balancing acting with “all kinds of survival jobs,” including waitress, hostess, coat checker, receptionist, personal assistant, and babysitter and nanny. She also worked as a standardized patient—an actor who portrays patients—at the USC Keck School of Medicine.

Scene photo of Meghan Strange in a production of Into the WoodsHer theater credits include a national production of Urinetown. During that tour, she received a note in her dressing room about a voiceover project for the Edgar & Ellen children’s books and TV series. From there, her work in children’s media took off, expanding to include notable TV shows such as The Land Before Time, Special Agent Oso (one of her favorite recording experiences, as it was done in an ensemble instead of individually), Doc McStuffins, Sofia the First and The Lion Guard (in one episode she voiced both characters in a chase scene).

“I love voiceover. You don’t have to worry about how you look or what you’re going to wear,” Strange said. “You also don’t have to memorize lines, so you can really just be present.”

Losses of two family members, in 2009 and 2015, shaped Strange’s path, including the decision to move back to the East Coast from Los Angeles to be closer to family. Volunteering at the Safe Harbor program at Jefferson Abington Hospital for grieving children and their families inspired her to earn a master’s degree in counseling psychology from Temple University (she recorded remotely for The Lion Guard while in school).

During the pandemic, Strange realized, “I wasn’t really doing what’s required as an actor,” such as self-promotion on social media. “Sometimes our behavior can be an indicator of where we stand on things,” she added. “I wasn’t auditioning or pushing myself that way.”

With encouragement from a therapist and two connections from Temple who had graduated from PCOM’s Clinical Psychology doctoral program, Strange applied, attracted by PCOM’s emphasis on clinical training, holistic approach to health care, and prioritization of interprofessional education.

“I never imagined the cohort I’m a part of would be such a supportive, warm, funny, colorful group,” Strange said. “It’s such a safe environment. I enjoy everyone so much.”

So will it be acting or psychology? Perhaps both.

“I’m trying not to think of these worlds and these parts of myself as so separate,” Strange said. “I’m really open to integrating both.”

Children’s shows, for example, regularly consult with psychologists.

“I’m staying open about ways in which I can integrate all of these skills and experiences,” she said.

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For the past 125 years, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) has trained thousands of highly competent, caring physicians, health practitioners and behavioral scientists who practice a “whole person” approach to care—treating people, not just symptoms. PCOM, a private, not-for-profit accredited institution of higher education, operates three campuses (PCOM, PCOM Georgia and PCOM South Georgia) and offers doctoral degrees in clinical psychology, educational psychology, osteopathic medicine, pharmacy, physical therapy, and school psychology. The college also offers graduate degrees in applied behavior analysis, applied positive psychology, biomedical sciences, forensic medicine, medical laboratory science, mental health counseling, physician assistant studies, and school psychology. PCOM students learn the importance of health promotion, research, education and service to the community. Through its community-based Healthcare Centers, PCOM provides care to medically underserved populations. For more information, visit pcom.edu or call 215-871-6100.

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