The American Psychological Association of Graduate Students (APAGS) recently honored two psychology faculty members for their mentoring prowess:
Kenneth N. Levy, PhD, won the 2004 Raymond D. Fowler Award for his commitment to helping students navigate graduate school, clarify their career goals and build their research portfolios. In his four years as an assistant psychology professor at Hunter College of the City University of New York, Levy-who began teaching at Penn State University in the fall-mentored more than 70 doctoral, master's and undergraduate students who worked in his Hunter research lab, which focused on developmental psychopathology and attachment studies.
"Anyone who shows a sincere interest and commitment is welcomed into the lab as a young colleague and is regarded as a person of value," says student nominator and mentee Teresa López-Castro.
Levy's mentees say he sends out regular e-mails welcoming their participation in journal articles he is writing, his most current research and conferences he'll attend. He encourages graduate and undergraduate students to teach and learn from each other and holds weekly lab meetings that cover topics such as research ethics and the ins-and-outs of graduate school.
What's more, "Student appointments are not necessary and the scope of topics students may address with him is not limited," adds López-Castro. "What I find most remarkable...is how he manages to be so productive in his own work yet so accessible to students."
Shawn O. Utsey, PhD, won the 2004 Kenneth and Mamie Clark Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Professional Development of Ethnic Minority Graduate Students for empowering ethnic-minority graduate students in his job as a faculty member and mentor at Howard University in Washington, D.C.
As the editor of the Journal of Black Psychology, Utsey created a student editorial board to engage graduate students in the publishing and peer-review process. He frequently publishes with his students on topics such as culture in counseling and assessment and encourages their participation at psychology conferences and in research; indeed, three of his mentees are fellows in APA's competitive Minority Fellowship Program.
Utsey also established a monthly research colloquium to help students boost their research, statistics and critical-thinking skills. Furthermore, "His mentees have embraced the notion of reciprocity by becoming mentors to younger ethnic minorities and sharing their emerging influence," says student nominator and mentee Mark Bolden, a fourth-year counseling psychology doctoral student at Howard.