Feature

Psychologist Steven Ungerleider, PhD, has given $25,000 to the American Psychological Foundation (APF) to create the Ungerleider/Zimbardo Travel Scholarship, which will help pay for graduate student travel to APA's Annual Convention to present research.

He has given more than $40,000 to APF, altogether. He hopes that other psychologists will match his most recent gift so that other talented students will be able to attend APA's convention.

Best known for his best-selling book "Faust's Gold" (St. Martin's Press, 2001) about the East German doping of its Olympic team members, Ungerleider credits the mentors he met through his involvement with APA for his success. Ungerleider has written five other books and dozens of professional articles during his 30-year career in psychology. "Faust's Gold" has been reviewed in the major media including The New York Times and was the subject of two documentary films. Ungerleider serves on the International Society of Olympic Historians and has been a consultant to several Olympic federations for many years.

"None of this would have happened without the training and mentorship of some of APA's major players," says Ungerleider, referring to psychologists such as Eliot Aronson, PhD, Arnold Buss, PhD, and Bob Helmrich, PhD, with whom he studied as an undergraduate at the University of Texas at Austin, and Philip Zimbardo, PhD, who is a colleague through APA. "I feel very acknowledged and blessed in my career and that it's time to give back to the next generation," he says.

Giving students access to APA's Annual Convention seems like the best way to get them energized and involved in the field, says Ungerleider, who earned his doctorate at the University of Oregon in Eugene and has lived there ever since. He has two daughters, one in medical school and one graduating from law school this year.

"I want them to come and listen to a Zimbardo, an Elizabeth Loftus, a Malcolm Gladwell, a Dean Ornish and get as inspired as I did to do great work," he says.

He added Zimbardo's name to the scholarship because "Phil has been inspiring in his willingness to give his time and energy not only to APA and students he meets at APA's convention but also to the Western Psychological Association," Ungerleider says.

Ungerleider's scholarship is part of the APA Science Directorate's Student Travel Program. His donation will support seven more travel scholarships each year, bringing the total number of students served by the program to 107. More information is available from APF.


Beth Azar is a writer in Portland, Ore.