The 2016 Division 36 Conference on Psychology, Religion and Spirituality.
Brooklyn has long been a destination for artists and thinkers. Its rich history and culture attract musicians and poets, and — most recently — 200 psychologists from around the world.
On March 11-12, SJC Brooklyn played host to the 2016 Division 36 Mid-year Conference on Psychology, Religion and Spirituality. The two-day event featured workshops, paper and poster presentations, and guest speakers from renowned institutions. Visitors arrived from 26 states, as well as international guests from Taiwan, Canada (Ontario and Quebec), Georgia, India, Belgium and Germany.
“Our main goals are to provide a way for people in the organization to get together and exchange ideas,” said Michael Nielsen, Ph.D., president of Division 36 and psychology department chair at Georgia Southern University, who delivered the conference’s opening words to a crowd in The Hill Center. “It’s a fascinating area. Psychology has many different perspectives, and we’re very fortunate to have people come not just from North America, but from across the world.”
Depending on an attendant’s preferences, he/she could learn more about The Relationship Between Interpersonal Religious/Spiritual Struggles and Nonbelievers’ Psychological Well-Being; The Intersection of Meaning, Positive Emotions, and Spirituality; Sufism, the Science of the Soul or numerous topics over the course of the two days.
Symposia sprinkled across classrooms on the fourth floor of McEntegart Hall, where SJC faculty such as Peter Lin, Ph.D.; Kathyrn Frost, Ph.D.; Thomas Petriano, Ph.D.; and Paul Ginnetty Ph.D. presented their own work.
Peter Lin, Ph.D., SJC psychology professor; and Henry Seiden, Ph.D., ABPP, clinical psychologist, presented When Freud Meets Buddha: The Algorithms of Chan (the Chinese term for Zen) Practice and Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy.
Kristina Schrepf ’17 and SJC psychology professor Kathryn Frost, Ph.D., presented Re-envisioning Haidt’s Ontological Presuppositions and Moral Matrix.
Thomas Petriano, Ph.D., SJC religious studies professor and chair; and Paul Ginnetty, Ph.D., SJC psychology professor, presented The Notions of Holding and Accompaniment in Lars and The real Girl: An Interdisciplinary Perspective.
The event also featured two keynote speakers: Paul Bloom, Ph.D., Brooks and Suzanne Ragen Professor of Psychology and Cognitive Science, Yale University, presented “There is Nothing Special About Religious Belief” while Sheldon Solomon, Ph.D., psychology professor at Skidmore College, presented “The Worm at the Core: On the Role of Death in Life.”
Many psychology undergraduate and graduate students rubbed elbows with esteemed academics and practitioners. Taking full advantage of the conference’s many opportunities were SJC’s Ryan Cleary ’18, Amanda Butera ’16 and Bryanna White ’17. The three presented their poster along with Dominique Treboux, Ph.D., SJC psychology professor and chair, titled Loving vs. Punitive Gods: Compassion Towards Migrants.
(L-R) Bryanna White ’17, Amanda Butera ’16 and Ryan Cleary ’18 with their poster presentation, Loving vs. Punitive Gods: Compassion Towards Migrants.
Well-attended and highly educational for all involved, the Division 36 was a fantastic opportunity — not only to showcase the wonderful work produced by some of psychology’s brightest and best, but the talents and success of our St. Joseph’s College’s own faculty and students.