Fielding Graduate University News

Fielding faculty Dr. Lenneal Henderson: "Unsung Heroes" Award Winner

Posted by Hilary Edwards on Thu, Dec 20, 2012

Lenneal J Henderson PhD2 resized 600Dr. Lenneal Henderson, ELC doctoral faculty member, receives the “Unsung Heroes" award for 2012 by the Association of Fundraising Professionals—Maryland Chapter for his numerous years of contributions to the Maryland Humanities Council.

"I am so grateful and humbled by this designation," Hendersen remarked about being nominated for the award which was presented to him on National Philanthropy Day in Baltimore.

National Philanthropy Day® (NPD) is a special day set aside on the fifteenth of November. The purpose of this day is to recognize the great contributions of philanthropy and those people active in the philanthropic community.

NPD provides an opportunity to reflect on the meaning of giving and all that it has made possible. First held in 1986, NPD celebrates the endless daily contributions individuals and organizations across the world make to countless causes and missions. Last year, more than 100 AFP chapters held NPD events and activities across North America.

Through NPD, participants are able to show appreciation for all that has been accomplished in the name of giving, as well as show that there is still more to do. It's our chance to step into the spotlight for a brief moment and remind our communities, our society and the world that the spirit of giving is alive and well.

Tags: educational leadership

Partnering with Patients to Understand and Improve their Healthcare Experiences

Posted by Hilary Edwards on Tue, Dec 18, 2012

“The main thing... the care you're receiving, that one you will remember forever, because if it's a good care done or people listen to your problem or answer your questions or be pleasant, or just say simply say "hi" to you, it matters, because that you will remember." (Research Participant)

Partnering with Patients to Understand and Improve Their Healthcare Experiences: Pilot Study Report

Funded by: University Health Network, Toronto, ON Canada
Royal Roads University, Victoria, BC Canada
Fielding Graduate University, Santa Barbara, CA USA

Toronto’s University Health Network (UHN), with its four world-renowned teaching hospitals, is committed to providing the highest quality of patient-centered care. The study’s results represent variation in ways of experiencing patient satisfaction at Toronto Western. Analysis of the patients’ stories produced evidence-based categories of experiences. The prioritized relationships among these categories are represented as five levels of needs in an outcome space that represents patient satisfaction at Toronto Western. 

The pilot study established the foundation for a sustainable and cost-effective phenomenographic research that would complement and add important additional information to the NRC+ Picker survey. This combined knowledge could help UHN continue excel in innovative approaches and tools to measure health outcomes from the patient’s perspective. 

The preparatory work has been completed. Sustainable, limited phenomenographic research could be implemented with minimal design modification and limited costs. The value to UHN of subsequent research would be cumulative, expanding the knowledge from this pilot.

Dorothy Eastman Agger-GuptaThis report was written and revised by Fielding faculty and interim associate dean of HOD Dorothy Agger-Gupta and Niels Agger-Gupta (HOD '01), co-principal investigators for the pilot study, with important contributions from co-principal investigator Joy Richards, PhD (HOD '08), and co-investigators Carolyn Plummer (HOD student). Alumna Mary Ferguson Pare (HOD '97), who was recently awarded the most prestigious award Order of Canada, along with Petrina McGrath (HOD student) were also participants in the report. Several other HOD students and alumni contriubuted to the initial planning as well.

Correspondence author for this report Dorothy Agger-­‐Gupta: 

Tags: graduate education, human development, research

Creativity: An Important Paradigm for Aging

Posted by Hilary Edwards on Fri, Dec 14, 2012

 MG 6640 resized 600Creativity in the lives of aging adults emphasizes their potentials rather than their challenges.

The National Center for Creative Aging explains: “Health and wellness can be achieved in many ways, including using creativity to work the mind and body. Research has shown that mental activity stimulated by arts activities can be especially beneficial to people with dementia and Alzheimer's disease. Cases of cognitive disabilities increase with age, so as the population lives longer more people will be diagnosed. By bringing arts programs to people with cognitive disabilities, you can create more opportunities for people with cognitive loss and their caregivers.” (accessed December 14, 2012) 

Encouraging creativity in the lives of older adults strengthens morale, enhances physicaldescribe the image health, and enriches relationships.

Historically, older adults have functioned as the keepers of culture in society, and are responsible for passing on the history and values of a community to the next generation. Creativity in later life wraps this gift to children, grandchildren, and society in the form of beautiful artwork. The Sixth Annual International Conference on Positive Aging, hosted by Fielding Graduate University, is a highly interactive gathering of diverse leaders and community members interested in shaping a dynamic future for older adults throughout the world. The conference features the following workshops and presentations focused on creativity and aging: 

  • Say ‘Yes’ to Tango: A Conversation about Creative Aging by Lola Fraknoi

  • Save My Place: A Performance Piece on Dying by Dori Gillam

  • Nimble Minds, Nimble Bodies: Exploring How the Creative Arts Contribute to Lifelong Human Development, Health, and Quality of Life by Michael Patterson

  • The Art of Aging by Richard and Alice Matzkin

  • Visionaries Have Wrinkles: Serving the Generation Who Will Change the World by Karen Sands

  • The Courage to be Brilliant: How to Aging with Courage, Wisdom and Grace by Marta Monahan

 The Sixth Annual International Conference on Positive Aging features a keynote address by Wendy Lustbader, MSW, who will speak about “The Unexpected Pleasures of Growing Older"—the title of her latest book. She has also written and spoken about kindness and how to nurture a basic positive attitude towards whatever life brings as we get older.  Featured speaker Dr. Brian de Vries is a Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America, a member of the leadership council for the American Society on Aging, and co-chair of the Lesbian and Gay Aging Issues Network constituency group. Dr. de Vries will speak about his extensive work on aging experiences, including bereavement among gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender adults. Further highlighted speakers include one of the reigning pioneers of gerontology, James Birren, who will receive Fielding Graduate University’s Creative Longevity and Wisdom Award along with well-known spiritual leader Ram Dass, who will relay his experience in spiritual methods and practices via webinar.

There is still time to register at the early bird price! To learn more and to register, please visit 

The International Conference on Positive Aging aims to provide practitioners and policymakers with knowledge and tools to improve their support of older persons and increase the quality of life for all.

For more information:

Click here for the website: Sixth Annual International Conference on Positive Aging
Facebook - Keep up with the latest information about the conference, and access to a network of individuals who are interested and involved in the topic of positive aging
Click here for Facebook: The Fielding Positive Aging Conference
YouTube – View videos of speakers from previous conferences
Click here for YouTube:Channel for Positive Aging

**Photo by Peter Whitehouse

Tags: creativity, conference, aging

Fielding Graduate University Sustainability Survey: Your Input is Requested

Posted by Hilary Edwards on Wed, Dec 12, 2012

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This request is sent on the behalf of the

Fielding Graduate University Sustainability Workgroup

Dear Colleague,

Interest in sustainability has increased exponentially alongside global concerns that we are living unsustainably on the planet. Fielding Graduate University is stepping up its commitment to sustainability by engaging in a community-wide conversation about what sustainability means at Fielding Graduate University now and into the future.

The most common definition of sustainable development comes from the Brundtland Report which states, "Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs" (1987, p. 43). For our purposes, "sustainability" refers to social well-being (people), economic stability (prosperity) and environmental health (planet).

With its longstanding commitment to diversity, social justice and social change, Fielding Graduate University is already helping to lead sustainability transformation. The purpose of this survey is to find out from you what ACTIONS you think we can take to build awareness of sustainability and its intimate relationship with social, environmental and economic factors.

Your responses to this survey will remain anonymous unless you choose to submit your name, and this research has received approval from Fielding's Institutional Review Board. This survey will be sent to students, alumni, administration, staff, faculty, the Board of Trustees and community partners associated with all three schools.

Thank you in advance for your contributions to these efforts. The deadline for completing this survey is December 21st, 2012.

Your input will be included in this university-wide consultation that the Sustainability Working Group will present to Fielding's leadership team and community members.

Please use this link to access the survey:

For questions, please contact Principal Investigator, Four Arrows


Sustainability Working Group:

Four Arrows, Jo-Anne Clarke, Kerul Kassel, Roan Kaufman, Jean Lasee, Jeff Leinaweaver, Katrina Rogers, Julie Smendzuik-OBrien, Paul Stillman, Nate Strongelk, Steve Upham, David Blake Willis

Tags: sustainability, higher education, fielding graduate university

What Therapists Learn from Psychotherapy Clients: Effects on Personal and Professional Lives

Posted by Hilary Edwards on Wed, Dec 12, 2012

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Article published in "The Qualitative Report" by Fielding Graduate University faculty, alumni, and students: What Therapists Learn from Psychotherapy Clients: Effects on Personal and Professional Lives

To view article, click here: The Qualitative Report 2012 Volume 17, Article 95, 1-21

Abstract: While considerable research has examined how clients learn from psychotherapists, there is only sparse literature on what therapists learn from their therapy clients. In a qualitative, exploratory study, nine researchers interviewed 61 psychologists from across North America in order to see what psychotherapists may have learned and how they have been affected by their clients both personally and professionally. Participants responded to nine open-ended questions on learning about life-lessons, relationships, ethical decision-making, coping, courage, wisdom, psychopathology, personality, cultural differences, lifespan development and more. Participants’ richly elaborated responses were coded thematically and narrative data illustrates the most frequent themes. Therapists reported learning a great deal across each of the questions, consistently expressing respect for their clients' resilience, courage and moral sensibilities.

Led by Fielding faculty Sherry Hatcher, PhD, ABPP, authors included Fielding alumna Adriana Kipper-Smith, PhD (PSY '12), and Fielding students Manuela Waddell, Mechtild Uhe, Joanne S. West, Jason H. Boothe, Joan M. Frye, Katherine Tighe, Kelly L. Usselman, and Patricia Gingras.

Sherry Hatcher resized 600Dr. Hatcher is a member of the core psychology faculty at Fielding Graduate University, following over two decades as a faculty member in the Department of Psychology, University of Michigan where she taught in both the undergraduate and graduate Psychology programs and was presented with three Excellence in Education Awards. Including the present study, Dr. Hatcher has initiated and supervised a number of research projects with her graduate students at both universities, resulting in national presentations at the American Psychological Association Convention and publications in journals such as Psychotherapy: Theory, Research, Practice, Training. Dr. Hatcher was a long time member of the Ethics Committee of the Michigan Psychological Association and is a licensed clinical psychologist in the states of Michigan and Connecticut. 

This published article is a result of cross-cluster/multi-site research. 

Fielding’s Clinical Psychology PhD program combines face-to-face student-faculty meetings at local, regional, and national events with independent study and online learning in real time (synchronous) and any time (asynchronous). The vibrant learning community supports students with small group faculty-student interactions that are collegial, collaborative, and respectful.  These blended, distributed learning elements combine to help students achieve educational and professional goals. Students meet regularly with their local faculty advisor in small learning groups called clusters. Activities include formal academic seminars and presentations, clinical presentations & discussions, research training, and informal networking and socializing. 

Tags: psychology, clinical psychology, graduate education, research

Host Dr. Connie Corley of "Experience Talks" Interviews Musician/Author/educator Christine Stevens

Posted by Hilary Edwards on Wed, Dec 05, 2012

Christine Stevens resized 600Featured musician for the Sixth Annual International Conference on Positive Aging, Christine Stevens, interviewed by Dr. Connie Corely on radio show "Experience Talks"

Christine Stevens is the author of a new book, MUSIC MEDICINE: THE SCIENCE OF HEALING YOURSELF WITH SOUND.  

Stevens is an internationally acclaimed speaker, author, and music therapist. Holding masters degrees in both social work and music therapy, Stevens inspires people all over the world with her message of music for holistic health, spirituality and wellness. Stevens is the author of Music Medicine, The Healing Drum Kit, and The Art and Heart of Drum Circles book and DVD. She has recorded two play-along CDs; Reviving Rhythms, and Drumming Up Diva.

Stevens is the founder of UpBeat Drum Circles, offering diversity training, teambuilding, and wellness presentations world-wide. She has trained facilitators and led workshops in more than twenty countries, including Iraq, Hong Kong, Brazil, South Africa, Japan, and Western Europe.

Stevens trains HealthRHYTHMS facilitators throughout the United States, England and Japan through Remo, the world's largest drum company. A leader in the music and wellness movement, Christine also serves on the editorial board of Explore: A Journal of Science and Healing

Stevens will be appearing at the Sixth Annual International Conference on Positive Aging, February 10 - 12, 2013, in Los Angeles. 


Dr. Connie Corley, MSW, PhD, producer and host of "Experience Talks"

Connie CorelyDr. Corley is a Professor at Fielding Graduate University and California State University Los Angeles (and Associate Director of Lifelong Learning, Applied Gerontology Institute).  She completed her graduate degrees at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She holds certification from the Center for Mind-Body Medicine in Washington, DC and is adjunct faculty at Saybrook University. Dr. Corley's 100+ publications and national/international presentations have spanned the fields of aging and the arts, geriatrics, rehabilitation, spirituality, and substance abuse.  She  has been a mentor in Geriatric Social Work Initiatives funded by the John A. Hartford Foundation, and also a mentor in the New Ventures in Leadership program of the American Society on Aging (ASA). She is a fellow of the Gerontological Society of America (GSA) and the Association for Gerontology in Higher Education (AGHE), Past President of the Association for Gerontology Education in Social Work (AGE-SW),  a recipient of the AGE-SW Leadership Award, and in 2004 was the Inaugural recipient of the West Coast Gerontological Social Work Career Award from the Institute for Geriatric Social Work.  Cal State LA named Dr. Corley a Distinguished Woman in 2008. She is in "Who's Who in America” and “Who’s Who of American Women.” 


Tags: gerontology, international, adult learning