A Message from the President - November 2018

Monday, November 26, 2018

Reflecting upon the spirit of Thanksgiving, I’d like to express my gratitude to our vital and resilient Palo Alto University community. I am inspired daily by our richly diverse community, commitment to service, and the outstanding work by our students, faculty and alumni to improve lives throughout our community and around the world.

In this month’s newsletter, we are delighted to announce that PAU Professor Ricardo F. Muñoz received the ‘2018 Outstanding Mentor Award’ from the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies during a ceremony in Washington, D.C. November 16. We are so inspired and humbled by Dr. Muñoz’s commitment to mentorship and his tireless efforts to make mental health care available around the globe. Congratulations Dr. Muñoz!

PAU’s impact was also recognized at the Western Association for Counselor Education and Supervision (WACES) conference November 9 in Santa Rosa. PAU Assistant Professor Margaret Lamar not only chaired an outstanding conference that featured many talks by our PAU Counseling Department colleagues, but she also took home the organization’s “Professional Leadership Award;” one of our recent alums, Moitreyee Chowdhury, won an “emerging leader” award and presented a session with Dr. Cristen Wathen on her work on working with the South Asian community through a culturally competent lens; and, perhaps most exciting of all, I was thrilled to see our counseling program receive well-deserved recognition as the “Innovative Program Award for 2018.”

I’m consistently reminded of the wealth of service our community is providing beyond our classroom walls. I encourage you to read about the inspiring work of PAU Alumna Heather Unrue, Ph.D., as she teaches patients, medical residents, and practicing physicians the value of early psychological intervention in pediatric primary care. Additionally, the heartfelt story of PAU Ph.D. Candidate Vidya Bharat’s commitment to address mental health issues in the workplace in India serves as an inspiration to the positive global impact that the mental health field can have both at home and abroad.

In closing, I was reminded last week about how kind and caring our community is. At our holiday gathering of staff, faculty and Trustees, a bounty of toys and gifts were collected for CASA, food was collected for the Second Harvest Food Bank, and donations were made to help survivors of California’s Camp Fire.  

Thank you for contributing so passionately to our communities, and for being the change we wish to see in the world. I wish each of you a warm and safe winter break and holiday season.

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