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).
Dr. Alexander headed to San Fransisco, California for the annual APA Convention! This year she had several presentations across the four-day conference. Here are a few brief snapshots:
Panel: Can Racism Be Treated Therapeutically? Answers From the Next Generation of Psychologists. Chair: Graham Danzer, PsyD
Can we treat individuals engaging in racist ideology? Five early career psychologists discussed how the field can address racism. Dr. Alexander discussed conceptualization approaches to racism as a potential clinical syndrome, as well as discussed current interventions used to counter implicit biases.
Symposium: Special Topics in Assessment and Treatment--Sexual Offenders and People at Risk of Perpetrating. Chair: Oona Appel, PsyD. Discussant: Apryl Alexander, PsyD
Dr. Alexander discussed the importance of providing culturally competent care to individuals who have committed sex offenses and the limited research on diverse populations within this population despite the emphasis of cultural competence and humility in the field of psychology. Further, the panelists discussed critical areas need in sexual violence prevention.
Paper: Improving Competency Restoration Through Placement Decisions. Lead Author: Graham Danzer, PsyD
Colleague Dr. Graham Danzer (Florida State Hospital) presented an upcoming paper entitled The Association Between Specific Competence-Related Abilities and Competence Restoration. Dr. Alexander serves as a co-author of the manuscript — discussing her experiences as director of an outpatient competency restoration program. The manuscript will be published in the Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law in early 2019!
Symposium: The Disinvited--Opening Spaces for Our Marginalized Selves in Training and Practice. Chair: Apryl Alexander, PsyD. Discussant: Neil Gowensmith, PhD
The symposium explored the role intersecting, marginalized identities in supervision and training context. The presenters, GSPP forensic faculty, explored how these identities impact practitioners and their clients; how conventional approaches to supervision may overlook or discount the importance of these identities; and practical ways to open a space for exploration of these identities within the parameters of ethical and effective training and social justice practice.
Dr. Alexander headed to the mountainous Vail, Colorado with colleague Dr. Lynett Henderson Metzger to attend the Colorado Advocacy in Action (CAIA) conference. A full day of learning about the latest research and approaches to interpersonal violence and advocacy for persons impacted by interpersonal violence. Drs. Alexander and Henderson Metzger presented a 90-minute presentation providing an brief literature review on the impact of non-fatal strangulation in domestic violence cases.
Non-fatal strangulation refers to those who have survived an episode of strangulation (a form of mechanical asphyxia caused by direct pressure on the neck by one or two hands or arm). It is estimated 3-9.7% of U.S. women who have experienced interpersonal violence have also experienced non-fatal strangulation in their lifetime (Sorenson, Joshi, & Sivitiz, 2014). Further, strangulation attempts has been linked to acts of mass violence. For instance, Omar Mateen (who murdered 49 people at Pulse nightclub in Orlando) allegedly strangled two of his ex-wives and was never charged.
Drs. Alexander and Henderson Metzger hoped to bring awareness to this important issues, emphasize the need for proper assessment of victims of interpersonal violence, and begin a dialogue regarding proper intervention.
Dr. Alexander and her students traveled to Kansas City, Missouri to the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA) Annual Conference. Dr. Alexander served on the conference planning committee and gave a 3-hour continuing education workshop on cultural awareness and competence in sex offense treatment. Also, several Auburn and DU students participated in the Student Clinical and Data Blitz. Bravo to all involved!
Dr. Alexander attended the American Psychological Association’s Annual Convention in Washington, D.C. During the Convention, she received the APA Achievement Award for Early Career Psychologists from the APA Committee for Early Career Psychologists and National Register for Health Service Psychologists. This award is presented to individuals who have shown themselves to be rising stars, with great leadership under their belts and tremendous promise to change psychology for the better.
Dr. Alexander also received the Early Career Award for Outstanding Contributions to Research/Practice in the Field of Child Maltreatment from Division 37's (Child and Family Policy) Section on Child Maltreatment.
Dr. Alexander traveled to Prague, Czech Republic to present at the International Academy of Law and Mental Health Congress at the Faculty of Law at Charles University. Her presentation was entitled Intelligence in juveniles with illegal behaviors: A comparison of juveniles sex offenders and juvenile delinquents, which the lab hopes to be published soon! She also took some time to tour the gorgeous city!
Dr. Alexander headed back to Blacksburg, VA for the 5th Annual Faculty Women of Color in the Academy National Conference (FWCA). The conference had excellent all-star keynote speakers, including Melissa Harris-Perry, Nikki Giovanni, and Henrietta Mann. Dr. Alexander presented a poster on the Scholars Committed to Opportunities in Psychological Education (SCOPE) program (see below posts for more details), which was developed by her graduate students at Auburn University. It was a wonderful weekend with amazing scholars on Virginia Tech’s beautiful campus. Again, Go Hokies!
Back in Denver, Dr. Alexander participated in the snowy/rainy/sunny March for Science! There were estimated to be 20,000 people marching for evidence-based research. Go Denver! Go Science!
Dr. Alexander ventured to Indianapolis, IN as an invited speaker for the Indiana Sex Offender Management and Monitoring (INSOMM) program annual conference. Similar to her 2016 ATSA workshop, she presented on working with a population of dual status individuals in the criminal justice system—those with severe and persistent mental illness who have also committed sexual offenses.
The research team traveled to Seattle for the annual American Psychology-Law Society (APLS) annual conference. Yes, it was rainy!
Dr. Alexander presented a poster summarizing the Mt. Meigs-Mosaic Theatre Company civic engagement project (see prior posts for more details). Third-year Auburn University graduate student and lab member Megan Harrelson presented a poster entitled, Poly-victimization and sexual risk-taking behavior, as well as gave a presentation entitled The effects of poly-victimization and quality of caregiver attachment on disclosure of illegal sexual behavior, highlighting her thesis results. Postdoctoral fellow at University of Maryland and lab member Rebecca Fix also presented a poster entitled Disparities in the Courtroom: Exploring the Influence of Race/Ethnicity and Offense Category on Charge Reductions during Judicial Dispositions, which described her recently defended dissertation results! Yay, Becca!
Dr. Alexander also served as Discussant for a panel entitled Cultural and Diversity Considerations in Forensic Assessment and Treatment: Implications from Research at a Large Forensic Hospital with her Patton State Hospital colleagues and served on the Teaching, Training, and Careers committee. What a busy, fun time!
All in all, it was an excellent conference which highlighted social justice and public policy issues through its amazing plenary speakers and concurrent sessions. Can’t wait until next year
This year the lab traveled up I-85 to Atlanta for the American Psychology-Law Society (AP-LS) Annual Conference! Everyone in the lab had posters and papers accepted and did a phenomenal job presenting!
Dr. Alexander traveled to Vancouver to present at the International Conference on the Teaching of Psychology. Her lecture provided details about her risk assessment training she received funding for last year through the Daniel F. Breeden Endowment Grant she received last year. After the conference, she was able to watch the international firework show while in the penthouse of the conference hotel!
Dr. Alexander and Megan Harrelson traveled down to Orange Beach, AL to present at the Alabama Psychological Association Summer Convention. They provided a 3-hour workshop on how to conduct trauma-informed assessment and treatment to over 40 participants.