Division 51 named APAGS Division of the year

APAGS will recognize Division 51 for strong involvement of graduate students in the division and for initiatives that promote their professional development

"I believe that the leaders of (Division 51) are actively training students affiliates to be future leaders of the Division and to be active participants in the study of men and masculinity." —Christopher Mackowiak, doctoral student at the University of Missouri

The Society for the Psychological Study of Men and Masculinity (Division 51) has gone above and beyond to encourage the development of graduate students within the Division, and for its efforts, is being recognized as the American Psychological Association of Graduate Students’ (APAGS) Division of the Year. 

In addition to the recognition, Division 51 will receive a $1,500 award, which it plans to use for furthering graduate student involvement in the field. 

Six divisions applied for the award and all were competitive applicants, according to Cristina Cruza-Guet, PhD, outgoing APAGS member at large. 

“We were looking for a division that is invested in recruiting and retaining students and in promoting student participation at all levels of the organization,” Cruza-Guet said. “We were also interested in Divisions that mentor students as future leaders, researchers and clinicians—as future successful professionals within the field.” 

The APAGS committee that evaluated the applicants looked for specific criteria for the winning Division: a requirement that students be members of APA, the student representative be a voting Division board member, evidence of student involvement in governance and activities, development and implementation of innovative programs that target student needs, significant student membership, quality of plans to use the APAGS funding (if awarded), and that Divisions support the development of student members, including socializing students for the profession and promoting professional identity. 

In its application for the award, Division 51 showed a membership of 451 student members and 440 senior members—a near ration of 1:1, with a slightly higher number of students. Cruza-Guet said that other indicators of successful involvement of graduate students in Division 51 were apparent in the application, including: 

  • Plenty of opportunities for mentorship, including speed mentoring at the APA convention, welcoming students to the midwinter retreat and all division programming during convention including Executive Board; 

  • Significant encouragement for professional development, including travel scholarships that support attendance to national & regional conferences and several student awards (Student of the Year, Research Award, Dissertation Award); 

  • Opportunities for students to be involved in leadership, including a recently added student-member at large (with voting privileges) to their board to strengthen student representation, and the formation of a Student Interest Group; 

  • Richness of student programming during APA Convention, including a hospitality suite. 

Cruza-Guet, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow at Yale University Department of Psychiatry, said Divisions must continue to make involving graduate students a priority. 

“Student participation within Divisions is vital for the future of APA, the profession, and students,” she said. “APA is a large organization that can be overwhelming for new members. Divisions provide support and can become the ‘home’ of new members.” 

Division 51 will receive a plaque and recognition at the APA Convention in August. For more information about the award and how to apply for 2012, visit the APAGS website.