Dr. Alexander was interviewed by Denver Fox31 regarding the recent arrest of Jussie Smollett, star of the Fox show Empire, following allegations of false reporting of a hate crime. The interview and article can be found here.
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.
Dr. Alexander was invited to speak at HokieTalks Denver Vol. 2, a networking and speaking session where three Denver-area Virginia Tech alum share stories and life lessons they’ve learning since graduating from Virginia Tech. In it’s first year, HokieTalks Denver won an alumni outreach award!
Her talk, entitled Ut Prosim: Finding Solutions for Violence Prevention, discussed how her experiences at Virginia Tech (i.e., working for a domestic violence program, clinical research), informed her career in forensic psychology and violence prevention. The audience was great, including the Hokie Bird ;)
We're back at Denver Comic Con!
Dr. Alexander and her team of GSPP students presented a panel entitled A Rose From Concrete: Examining Post-Traumatic Growth in the Media. Dr. Alexander provided an introduction of the concept of post-traumatic growth (the subjective experience of positive psychology change reported by some individuals who have experienced trauma) and discussed how many superheroes have suffered a loss or trauma in their origin story.
Jason Silverberg (PsyD student) presented on Frank Castle's experience of moral injury in the Netflix series Punisher. Loe Blackmond (MAFP graduate; PsyD student) discussed Gamora's (from Guaridans of the Galaxy and Infinity War) journey to post-traumatic growth. Despite the session being the very last session of the last day of Comic Con, there was a great audience turnout! The audience was very engaged during the Q&A portion, which centered on trauma-informed practice in writing, education, and the workplace. Way to integrate psychological science into popular culture!
Dr. Alexander was invited to present at the University of Denver's Grand Challenges forum on addressing violence. She provided a 5-minute "lightning talk" discussing poly-victimization in children, adolescents, and young adults, as well as in juveniles adjudicated for illegal sexual behaviors. She ended her talk with outlining areas of prevention (e.g., need for medically accurate and culturally informed sexual education, removing juveniles from registries) in addressing violence in our communities. Check out here lightning talk (beginning at the 11:42 mark) here!
Colorado Community Media has a Time to Talk series which focuses on community mental health issues. Part 1 focused on barriers to mental health treatment. Part 2 focused on mental health and incarceration. Part 3 of the series, which focuses on mental health in schools and issues affecting teens, was released this week. Dr. Alexander was interviewed and her remarks on sexting and social media use among adolescents were featured in the two articles written by Alex DeWind below:
Dr. Alexander testified for the Colorado House Committee on Public Health Care & Human Services regarding HB 18-1245 aimed at banning practices labeled "conversion therapy" for LGBTQ+ minors, a harmful and practice which is opposed by major professional organizations, including the American Psychological Association. This is the fourth year the bill has been introduced to the Colorado State Legislature and Dr. Alexander's second year testifying about the issue. The bill passed the House Committee in a 7-6 vote, and will reach the House floor soon.
Dr. Alexander and her DU Department of Theatre colleague Dr. Ashley Hamilton were awarded the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences (AHSS) Dean's Award for Interdisciplinary Studies. This funding will allow for a their steering committee to host a consultant for planning a Prison Education Program (PEP) through DU!
Dr. Alexander was also one of 20 faculty members selected for DU's inaugural Public Impact Fellow program. The Public Impact Fellows will receive training, access to workshops, and consultation focused on translating their research for public dissemination. Thus, continuing and supporting Dr. Alexander's commitment to advocacy, outreach, and public policy efforts!
Additionally, Dr. Alexander returned to Wheat Ridge, CO to testify again in front of the City Council regarding a resolution opposing conversion therapy for minors and supporting a statewide ban against conversion therapy for minors. In a 6-1 vote, the City Council voted for the resolution! Finally progress is being made! Dr. Alexander will testify at the State Capitol next week for the state bill regarding the same issue.
Dr. Alexander was accepted into the University of Denver Center for Community Engagement and Service Learning (CCESL)'s Service Learning Scholars Program. The Scholars Program was designed for professors interested in incorporating community-engagement and service learning into their courses. She participated in a 2-day workshop focused on modifying her current DU courses to incorporate a community-engagement component for her students.
Stay tuned! She has several interdisciplinary projects in the works for 2018!
Dr. Alexander and Dr. Tessa Carr (Department of Theatre, Auburn University) were awarded a Community and Civic Engagement Grant through the College of Liberal Arts for a project proposal entitled, Creating Connections with Detained Adolescents and College Students: A Pilot Project.
The project allowed for Mosaic Theatre Company to provide three workshops for the detained adolescents at the Alabama Department of Youth Services (DYS) Mt. Meigs Campus. Each boy who participated came up with their own performance based on a time they overcame adversity or based on an original poem. The final performance was held on April 29 to an audience of approximately 100 people to much success! Thank you, Mosaic Theatre Company!
Outreach work is growing area of interest in the lab. Dr. Alexander attended the Black Doctoral Network (BDN) Conference in Atlanta and participated in a panel focused on outreach-related academic careers. Also, undergraduate research assistant Nathalie Dieujuste presented a poster highlighting the results of the Scholars Committed to Opportunities in Psychological Education (SCOPE) program.
Dr. Alexander and Dr. Tessa Carr (Department of Theatre, Auburn University) were awarded a Community and Civic Engagement Grant through the College of Liberal Arts for a project proposal entitled, Creating Connections with Detained Adolescents and College Students: A Pilot Project. The project will allow for Mosaic Theatre Company to provide workshops for the detained adolescents at the Alabama Department of Youth Services (DYS) Mt. Meigs Campus.
The Department of Psychology at Auburn University held its first Scholars Committed to Opportunities in Psychological Education (SCOPE) program. SCOPE is a 3-day program that was founded at Auburn by graduate students Becca Fix and Madison Silverstein which is committed to the recruitment, mentoring, empowerment, and professional training of undergraduate racial/ethnic minority students interested in attending graduate school and subsequent careers in the field of psychology. Dr. Alexander served as one of the faculty mentors.
Dr. Alexander was selected to participate in Auburn University's Academy for Civic Engagement (ACE). Civic engagement refers to the ways in which citizens participate in the life of the community in order to improve conditions for others or to help shape the community's future (Adler & Goggin, 2005). She spent time with colleagues from Auburn University and universities in Mexico, collaborating on ways to incorporate civic engagement into their teaching.