Wilson Leadership Research Award Winner (2009-10)
Psi Chi is pleased to announce the 2009-10 Kay Wilson Leadership Award for Outstanding Chapter President, Elizabeth Fichtel
of Xavier University (OH). Th e Psi Chi/Kay Wilson Leadership Award was established to honor Kay Wilson, the Executive Officer of Psi Chi from 1991-2003. Under Kay’s leadership, Psi Chi doubled its membership and increased its grants, awards, and visibility. Kay not only demonstrated excellence in leadership but also realized the role Psi Chi plays in developing future leaders in psychology. Th is award is dedicated to her commitment for leadership.
Th e award is presented annually to one chapter president who demonstrates excellence in leadership of the local chapter. Such leadership should assist Psi Chi in achieving its purpose "to encourage, stimulate, and maintain excellence in all fields, particularly in psychology, and to advance the science of psychology."
As the winning Psi Chi chapter president, Ms. Fichtel received a cash award of $500 and travel expenses to attend the Psi Chi/Eastern Psychological Association’s Convention in San Diego, CA
to receive an engraved plaque commemorating the award. Please see Ms. Fichtel's personal statement about her role as chapter president.
Through psychology, Elizabeth Fitchel hopes to apply her strengths and skills to provide for an underserved group in society: specifically mentally disturbed children, adolescents, and adults. Research and clinical experiences have allowed her to develop the skills for interactions with the patients. After graduating from Xavier University, Ms. Fitchel will be pursuing a graduate degree in counseling psychology at University of St. Thomas (MN). In pursuing a higher degree in psychology, she hopes to maximize her potential as an individual and as a contributing and critical member of the mental health profession.
As I prepare to pass the presidential torch onto the newly elected president of Psi Chi, I cannot help but beam with pride at the wonderfully successful year we had. While there were many memorable events, perhaps the most memorable was the Psi Chi speaker series—Celebration of Women in Psychology. Th is incredible event was made possible by the generosity of the Women of Excellence at Xavier University. As recipients of a $7,000 grant, the Celebration of Women in Psychology supported the mission of the Women of Excellence Giving Circle and Xavier University, by educating all students about issues that confront women and how psychological research can be applied to understanding and overcoming these real world challenges that are often minimized.
The Celebration of Women in Psychology off ered seven events on
psychological issues related to women—body image, self-esteem, issues
relevant to minority women, and the development of women in the
workplace—by inviting successful, renowned women in psychology to
lecture on campus. Presenters included Dr. Nadine Kaslow of Emory
University (GA), Dr. Ann Kearney-Cook of the Cincinnati Psychotherapy
Institute (OH), and Dr. Robin Arthur of the Lindner Center of HOPE
(OH). Th is coincided with the Women of Excellence Giving Circle’s mission
and Xavier’s goal to educate and enrich the experiences of its students by
exposing all students to particular women’s issues that may not be covered
as in depth in the classroom.
Prior to this event there was a defi nite need for increased awareness and
focus on women’s issues at Xavier University. Like academia in general,
psychological work has been traditionally male dominated despite the fact
that at the undergraduate level, the majors are predominantly women. Thus,
it was extremely beneficial and motivational to sponsor successful female
psychologists. Th e lectures were not only informative but the hope is that
they inspired students and offered guidance to those students searching for
more direction within the broad field of psychology.
As the 2009-10 chapter president, I feel extremely honored to have
spearheaded efforts that brought such wonderful events to our chapter
and university. At first, I was a little hesitant to undertake such a huge
responsibility; however I was pleasantly surprised to fi nd how much it
taught me about myself, fellow classmates, and the chapter executive
committee. What began as a very diverse group of individuals comprising
an executive board quickly became a cohesive group working together
to bring an exceptional event to our fellow classmates and community. I
consider myself to be a very independent and driven individual, yet each
task we undertook as a committee forced me to utilize the support, skills,
and talents of our team to achieve the greatest outcome. Th is is just one
example of how my time as the president of Psi Chi has impacted me, as I
am certain it will continue to do as I continue as a professional in the field