September 2019-The Joker Psychology

Why so serious???

Dr. Alexander co-authored a chapter in the recently released book The Joker Psychology: Evil Clowns and the Women Who Love Them, edited by comic book psychology expert Dr. Travis Langley.

The co-authored chapter is entitled Therapy: Can Counseling Cure the Clown? and Dr. Alexander contributes a section entitled Empathy Training for Psychopaths, which discusses research on the effectiveness of victim empathy training with psychopaths.

You can purchase the book on Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

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August 2019-APA Convention 2019

This year’s APA convention was held in Chicago, Illinois where Dr. Alexander indulged in deep dish pizza and Chicago Dogs!

Additionally, she was awarded the 2019 Early Career Award for Outstanding Contributions to Benefit Children, Youth, and Families from APA’s Committee on Children, Youth, and Families. The committee citation read, “The committee was impressed with [her] research, examining the impact of childhood maltreatment, on sexual behavior, sexual recidivism, and treatment of adolescents who commit sexual offenses. [Her] past and ongoing work has not only significantly shaped scientific thinking about vulernabilities, but also is directly influencing policy and practice regarding the well-being of children and families.”

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Dr. Alexander and colleagues (Drs. Graham Danzer, Jennifer Hsai, Nicholas Grant) held a Emerging Leader panel entitled The Trainee Experience of the Supervisor with Signs of Impairment: A Critical Discussion, where Dr. Alexander discussed supervisors who are experiencing problems in professional practice.

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July 2019-MFP Psychology Summer Institute

Once again Dr. Alexander traveled to Washington D.C. Dr. Alexander received the highly competitive Psychology Summer Institute (PSI) Fellowship, a week-long intensive training which provides mentoring and career development to early career psychologists to develop their research on ethnic minority issues, by the Minority Fellowship Program (MFP) of the American Psychological Association (APA).

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Additionally, two students from her department also received MFP student/predoctoral fellowships; one under the direct mentorship of Dr. Alexander.

Amber Jackson (MAFP ’19) received the Services for Transition Age Youth (STAY) Fellowship, which provides financial support and training opportunities for master’s students in order to further their development in areas related to mental health services for ethnic minority youth ages 16 through 25 and their families. Marshall Schroeder (PsyD student) received the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (MHSAS) Postdoctoral Fellowship, which aims to promote culturally competent behavioral health services and policy for ethnic minority populations.

Amber Jackson (MAFP ’19) received the Services for Transition Age Youth (STAY) Fellowship, which provides financial support and training opportunities for master’s students in order to further their development in areas related to mental health services for ethnic minority youth ages 16 through 25 and their families. Marshall Schroeder (PsyD student) received the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (MHSAS) Postdoctoral Fellowship, which aims to promote culturally competent behavioral health services and policy for ethnic minority populations.

July 2019-Cyberbullying

On July 23, 2019, Frank Rzucek, the father of Shanann Watts spoke out about the online harassment and false accusations he and his family have faced after the tragic murder of his daughter and two granddaughters, Bella and Celeste. Listen to his remarks here.

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Dr. Alexander spoke with Denver ABC and NBC about the negative consequences of cyberbullying and why individuals engage in cyberbullying or trolling behavior. To see the interviews, click here for ABC7 and here for NBC9.

Additionally, Dr. Alexander was interviewed by Fox31 about some countries and Instagram removing the ‘like’ feature on their social media platforms. Learn more about her thoughts here.

June 2019-Black Panther Psychology

Wakanda Forever! Dr. Alexander contributed two chapters in the recently released book Black Panther Psychology: Hidden Kingdoms, edited by comic book psychology expert Dr. Travis Langley and award-winning writer and comic book creator Alex Simmons.

Dr. Alexander and Dr. Tracy Vozar co-authored a chapter entitled The Raising of a King: Father-Son Attachment between T’Challa and T’Chaka, which analyzes the characters relationship using attachment theory.

Additionally, Dr. Alexander authored a chapter entitled Black Girl Magic: Black Women as Leaders of Wakanda which discusses media tropes, misogynoir, and the importance of Black women as leaders.

You can purchase the book on Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

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May 2019-STEM School Shooting

On May 7, 2019, Colorado suffered another school shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch, resulting in one death and multiple injuries. Dr. Alexander was interviewed by The Denver Post —discussing sentencing options in juvenile versus adult court for the two alleged suspects (one 16 years old, one 18 years old). The article is available to read here.

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Additionally, for more information on offering support to children, teachers, and first responders, please reach out to Dr. Alexander and the Graduate School of Professional Psychology at DU. For tips on how to discuss these events with children, here are some recommended sites:


In the aftermath of a shooting: Help your children manage distress
 (APA; February 2019)

Talking to Children about the Shooting (National Child Traumatic Stress Network)

Helping Youth After Community Trauma: Tips for Educators (National Child Traumatic Stress Network)

May 2019-Sweat

Back in Denver, Dr. Alexander was invited to participate in two talkback sessions for the Pulitzer prize-winning play Sweat at the Denver Center for Performing Arts (DCPA). Written by two-time Putlizer winning playwright Lynn Nottage, Sweat is a play about working steel mill workers of Reading, Pennsylvania in the early 2000s. Many of the questions in the talkback centered around theme of economic inequity in the U.S.

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May 2019-Across the Pond

Dr. Alexander was selected to participate in the American Psychological Association’s MOU Partner Collaboration and Exchange program. She attended the British Psychological Society’s annual conference in Harrogate, England. The theme of this year’s conference was The Psychological Impact of Inequality and Dr. Alexander provided a presentation on the school-to-prison pipeline. She also networked with colleagues from throughout the UK and beyond regarding public policy and advocacy efforts (and enjoyed a lot of British foods).

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April 2019-#SAAM

April is Sexual Assault Awareness (and Prevention) Month. This year’s theme was I Ask, which centers on consent education—an important topic to Dr. Alexander as highlighted in her TEDxMileHigh talk.

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For SAAM, Dr. Alexander was interviewed for the Life As She Knows It—a podcast co-hosted by her TEDxMileHigh colleague Kimberly Corban! You can listen to the podcast here or via your favorite podcast platforms. Additionally, check out Kimberly’s important TEDxMileHigh talk on sexual violence here.

In the last few weeks of the legislative session, Colorado HB 1032 concerning comprehensive sex education and consent education still needs to pass through the Senate. Dr. Alexander headed down to the Capitol with the ACLU of Colorado for Sex Education Visibility Day to promote the importance of this bill and speak with state legislators.

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Finally, Dr. Alexander headed to Fort Collins, Colorado to the inaugural Northern Colorado Diversity Conference to give two workshops on healthy relationships. She had a great audiences of teens throughout the area who engaged in conversations surrounding relationship violence and bystander intervention needs.

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January 2019-Busy Start!

2019 is here and ought to be a great year!

The National Multicultural Conference and Summit (NMCS) was held in Denver this year. Dr. Alexander was selected to attend the inaugural Academic Feminist Leadership Academy held before the conference, and co-facilitated a roundtable entitled Changing the academy from within: A conversation about opening doors and minds in graduate clinical training with her GSPP colleagues.

The following week Dr. Alexander headed to The Big Easy for the National Council of Schools and Programs in Professional Psychology (NCSPP) mid-winter conference. Outside of eating an ungodly amount of gulf coast oysters, she gave two presentations. The first focused on the development of graduate-level curriculum in public policy and advocacy—discussing the development of her Public Policy and Advocacy course. The second presentation was conducted with her GSPP colleagues and entitled On fish, water, and what we don’t know we don’t know: Disrupting privilege in graduate clinical training. The presenters discussed how they discuss and disrupt privilege through pedagogy and experiential training in their training program.

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Dr. Alexander was on Colorado Public Radio discussing ways to address police-involved shootings after 10 incidents of these shootings occurring in Colorado in the first few weeks of January. Check out the article and clip here.

Lastly, related to her TEDxMileHigh talk, Dr. Alexander testified in support of Colorado House Bill 19-1032 Comprehensive Sex Education. The bill would support consent education, healthy relationship education, and LGBTQ+ inclusive education in sex education programs throughout the state. The bill was passed the House Health and Insurance Committee in a 7-4 vote and is headed to appropriations!

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February 2019-New Publication

Dr. Alexander co-authored a manuscript published in the Journal of the Academy of Psychiatry and the Law with several other leading clinicians and researchers in competency restoration. Dr. Alexander serves as the Director of the Denver FIRST Outpatient Competency Restoration Program.

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Abstract: The optimization of trial competency restoration is a topic of growing interest and controversy in the fields of forensics, psychology, criminal law, and public policy. Research has established that adult defendants who have severe psychotic disorders and cognitive impairments are more likely than defendants without these conditions to be found incompetent to stand trial and are less likely to be restored to competency thereafter. Research has also identified some of the benefits of attempting restoration in hospitals, jails, or outpatient settings for defendants with different diagnoses or levels of cognitive functioning. Rates of restoration, length of stay necessary to achieve restoration, and, in some cases, how quickly defendants are found non-restorable are primary indicators of positive outcome. We sought to review the extant literature on competency restoration, with the goals of identifying implications for current practice and generating inquiries for future research. We found that there are significant advantages and disadvantages of attempting restoration in a hospital, jail, or outpatient setting on rates of restoration, length of stay necessary to achieve restoration, or length of time necessary to determine non-restorability, while controlling for several relevant factors (e.g., diagnosis, cognitive limitations).

January 2019-TEDxMileHigh RESET

Happy new year!

Dr. Alexander gave her first TEDxMileHigh talk to an audience of 5,000 people at the Bellco Theater in Denver, Colorado on December 1. The video entitled “Sex violence is preventable—here’s how” is now LIVE!!! Click here. Her talk discusses the importance of consent education and medically accurate sex education for young people as a means of preventing sexual violence. Please watch this important talk and share with others.

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November 2018: New Publication

New publication in College Student Journal is a collaboration between Dr. Alexander and her Auburn University student colleagues. Two of the co-authors were undergraduate students at the time it was written!

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Abstract: Risky sexual behavior (RSB) is common among undergraduate students in the United States and previous studies indicate an increased likelihood of engaging in RSB while under the influence of alcohol. Alcohol use is highly prevalent among college students, especially those students involved in sororities. The present study aims to examine the frequency of RSB in a sample of 330 sorority and non-sorority students at a Southeastern university using validated measures of RSB and RSB related to alcohol use. Results indicated no significant differences between sorority members and non-sorority members on measures of RSB. Implications for prevention and intervention strategies for college women are discussed.