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35th Anniversary Celebration

Media Advisory/Press Release

Gala to Celebrate 35 Years of Pioneering Spirit at MSPP

April 20, 2009–West Roxbury, Newton, MA—For 35 years, the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology (MSPP) has been a training leader in New England for mental health care providers. Breaking the mold for psychologist training, in 1972 a group of area psychologists and national experts challenged the existing university programs which emphasized science and research over direct clinical experience. These individuals had the courage to create a new pedagogy, built on the basis of experiential education. MSPP remains one of six of the original 30 schools established, and is acknowledged as an ongoing pioneer in its field.

WHAT: MSPP 35th Anniversary Celebration
DATE: Friday, April 24, 2009
WHERE: Newton Marriott Hotel, 2345 Commonwealth Avenue, Newton, MA
WHEN: 6:00-10:00 pm

The school’s visionary efforts include: creation of the Latino Mental Health Training program, one of the first in the country, which addresses the need for culturally sensitive mental health professionals trained to provide psychological services to the growing United States Latino population.

MSPP’s commitment to serving the underserved has established The Freedman Center which addresses the crisis in children’s mental health by connecting children and families with appropriate information, resources and one another. In its growth, the center explores new ways to provide direct service, educate professionals, and increase funding and legislation through social advocacy. The work of the Freedman Center focuses on collaborating with partners such as schools, community organizations, and physicians; providing culturally and linguistically relevant models of preventive mental health care; and training individuals to be active in creating mentally-healthy environments.

The 35th MSPP anniversary gala, an event to raise funds for student scholarships and community service projects, will honor a new roster of MSPP pioneers through special award presentations:

Stanley P. Rosenzweig, PsyD, will receive the MSPP Community Service and Training Award. One of the founders of MSPP, and its first interim president, Rosenzweig has been applauded as an agent of change in the entire field of psychology. Entering the field in 1956, at a time when psychology was barely gaining acceptance, Rosenzweig helped steer its course to the essential role it plays today in the mental health of communities. For over 35 years, he helped establish therapeutic credentials of psychologists and created programs addressing special mental health needs of returning military soldiers from the World Wars to the Vietnam War. In addition, he was the inspiration behind one of Boston’s first mental health day- treatment programs where veterans with severe emotional problems could live at home.

Frances V. Mervyn, PhD, Dean of Students at MSPP, will receive the MSPP Mental Health Humanitarian Award for her long-standing leadership in community health including an early directorship of the first community health center in the United States. Mervyn was also among the initial supporters of the Boston Institute for the Development of Infants and Parents, the first organization to bring together infant researchers and clinicians to share key information.

Three recipients of the Florence H. Lerman Mintz Award (Mintz is an MSPP alumna) will be honored:

Chris Newell, PsyD, has been hailed as a pioneer in the knowledge and learning field. As founder of the Institute of Global Work at Boston University, Newell’s mission emphasized leadership that shapes and guides more effective practice in global business processes. Senator Edward Kennedy applauded the Institute “in helping the nation retain its preeminence in the world economy while giving the next workforce generation greater understanding of their economy and the world.”

Caroline F. McCabe, PsyD, brought her psychology expertise into the corporate world, especially in driving business performance through tapping the capabilities of a company’s workforce. Her approach centers on engagement, organization development, culture change and talent management.

Dennis O’Brien, PsyD, is acknowledged for his diverse work including 25 years of treating children and families, and nine years as chief psychologist for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts overseeing services in a large outpatient center as well as a consultant to schools, daycare centers and hospitals. O’Brien later transferred his experience into the business world providing leadership development and executive integration services.

Robert “Bob” Lobel, Master of Ceremonies for the 35th MSPP Gala, is hailed as the dean of Boston Sportscasters. His wife, Suzanne McCarthy, is an alumna of MSPP. Almost 30 years of sports reporting for WBZ-TV in Boston, Lobel is also known for his local charity work including Children’s Hospital and The Genesis Fund.

MSPP strives to be a preeminent school of psychology that integrates rigorous academic instruction with extensive field education and close attention to professional development. We assume an ongoing social responsibility to create programs to educate specialists of many disciplines to meet the evolving mental health needs of society.

Updated 4/20/09

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