What are your goals, as APA president, for APA’s international engagement and for infusing an international perspective into APA’s own vision, activities, and initiatives?
Susan Krauss Whitbourne, Ph.D.
My interest in serving as APA President stems from four decades of active involvement with the Association, beginning in 1975 when I became a member of Division 20’s Education Committee. Since then, I have held a number of roles both in my division’s governance, and with APA governance beginning in 2000. Identifying primarily as an academic, I have also worked with colleagues in practice to help address the many challenges facing the organization.
As President, I will commit to increasing the relevance of psychological science to thought leaders who develop international policies in health, climate change, education, and the economy. For too long, policy makers have failed to turn to psychological science when making decisions that our field can help inform. I find it puzzling that we are not the main players at the table when the world’s thought leaders come together to solve our mutual problems. Psychologists have a unique role to play in international relations, and I would seek to promote this role.
In addition to my own teaching and research, I served as Fulbright Program Advisor at UMass Amherst for 20 years and now am Scholarship Coordinator for the UMass system. Through my leadership, my campus became a Top Fulbright Producer, with over 100 of my mentees receiving grants. I therefore have a strong affinity to international education and would continue to give this area emphasis as APA President. Through my scholarship work, I have traveled extensively to Europe and the UK to help connect students to the many opportunities for study and research abroad.
My vision for my Presidency is to “bring psychology home” to APA by attracting both new psychologists and those who have chosen not to maintain their membership. I therefore will work to expand the definition of “home” to psychology and beyond.