Newsletter Article

Diversity Steering Committee Does More

The Diversity Steering Committee (DSC) offers more than just the Diversity Science specialization for Psychology Graduate Students. They meet regularly to discuss diversity-related issues in graduate and undergraduate education and how to infuse the findings of diversity science throughout the Department’s curriculum. DSC has also taken on a larger role introducing potential graduate students to the variety of diversity-related research conducted in our department during Recruitment/Admissions Weekend. Read on to learn more about DSC's valuable contribution to the Psychology Department.

During the Psychology Department's graduate recruitment weekend, the DSC sponsored a luncheon that attracted prospective students from a variety of divisions of psychology. Faculty speakers included DSC member Drs. William George (Adult Clinical), Ione Fine (Cognition & Perception), and Wendy Stone (Child Clinical). Graduate Student speakers included DSC members Teri Kirby (Social Psychology & Personality with Dr. Anthony Greenwald) and Andrew Paves (Adult Clinical with Dr. Mary Larimer). All speakers noted how their own research contributes to the department’s mission to further diversity science. We also had the pleasure of Anthony Salazar, Graduate Diversity Program Specialist from the Graduate Opportunities & Minority Achievement Program (GO-MAP) of The Graduate School join us! We thank the speakers for giving amazing presentations.

DSC was invited by Carrie Perrin (Undergraduate Psychology Advising, Director of Student Services) and Dr. Laura Little (Psychology Principle Lecturer and Associate Chair for Teaching & Curriculum) to help develop an addition to the undergraduate senior exit survey. The overall purpose of this survey is to get feedback from graduating seniors regarding their experiences as they completed their psychology undergraduate degrees. The collaboration with DSC resulted in incorporating questions that measure the diversity climate within psychology classrooms. This survey will allow DSC to track the undergraduate diversity climate annually and aid DSC in developing best practices for promoting diversity within our classrooms.

Members of DSC continue to coordinate with GO-MAP to meet with prospective students who are interested in our Psychology Graduate Program. Over the past year, DSC members have staffed tables at graduate program informational sessions, provided lab tours, set up informational meetings, and engaged in email correspondence with a variety of prospective applicants to our graduate program. The goal of these interactions is to provide prospective students with a clearer understanding of the UW psychology Ph.D. program. Thank you to all members and graduate students who volunteer their time!

This year, Rick Cruz from the child clinical (Dr. Kevin King) psychology area completed the diversity specialization to complement his doctoral training. Rick has been deeply involved in diversity-related issues throughout his graduate training.  He has published 3 papers (2 as first author), one book chapter, and given several conference presentations to this point in his career. His research on substance use within Mexican American youth has been featured previously in another article when he received a prestigious NRSA fellowship. He is also active outside of the UW, with memberships in the National Hispanic Science Network on Drug Abuse, and the Interdisciplinary Research Training Institute on Hispanic Drug Abuse. Next up for Rick will be a one-year clinical psychology internship at the University of Illinois at Chicago in their Department of Psychiatry.


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