March 23, 2015
Tagged: Derner School of Psychology, Garden City

Derner Has Much to Celebrate at Psychology Day 2015


by Rebecca Endres

Hakeem Rahim speaks about mental illness and stigma.

Hakeem Rahim spoke about mental illness and stigma at Psychology Day.

Psychology Day has become a much-anticipated event at Adelphi University’s Gordon F. Derner Institute of Advanced Psychological Studies and a day to celebrate the Institution. This year’s event, held on February 24, 2015, included a commemoration of Gordon Derner, Ph.D., the Institute’s founding dean, who would have turned 100 on April 9, 2015.

The day kicked off with a faculty brunch and discussion followed by a keynote address by Hakeem Rahim, a noted mental health speaker and advocate.

“Today we’re going to break the silence around mental health and mental illness,” Rahim said to the dozens of students and faculty who attended his speech in the Thomas Dixon Lovely Ballroom of the Ruth S. Harley University Center. Rahim, who has struggled with bipolar disorder, discussed the alienating effects of stigma on individuals with mental illness. He offered ways to break down barriers and reach deeper understanding and acceptance of mental illness. “Diagnosis is not the end: it can be the beginning of a beautiful recovery and a new life,” he said.

“Hakeem’s speech really reached a lot of people,” Fallon Kane, an undergraduate psychology major and president of the Psychology Club, said after the keynote. “It brought a human element to psychology and we had a great turnout.” The afternoon continued with a group discussion led by Rahim.

Later, Derner Institute alumni led a discussion of career pathways in the field. The day’s festivities concluded with a presentation on the history of the program and its founder.

Derner Institue Professor Robert Mendelsohn, Ph.D., who worked closely with Dr. Derner, recalled his larger-than-life personality and reflected that Dr. Derner’s concept of a doctoral institute for training clinical psychologists was 20 years ahead of its time. Today, Dr. Mendelsohn noted, 50 percent of clinical psychology programs follow the program established by Dr. Derner in 1972.

Psychology Day’s various discussions and celebrations attracted a broad audience, including Derner faculty, students and administrators as well as undergraduates from across the University.

About Adelphi: A modern metropolitan university with a personalized approach to higher learning.

Adelphi University is a highly awarded, nationally ranked, powerfully connected doctoral research university offering exceptional liberal arts and sciences programs and professional training with particular strength in its Core Four—Arts and Humanities, STEM and Social Sciences, the Business and Education Professions, and Health and Wellness. Adelphi is dedicated to transforming students’ lives through small classes, hands-on learning and innovative ways to support student success.

Founded in Brooklyn in 1896, Adelphi is Long Island’s oldest private coeducational university. Today Adelphi serves nearly 8,000 students at its beautiful main campus in Garden City, New York—just 23 miles from New York City’s cultural and internship opportunities—and at dynamic learning hubs in Manhattan, the Hudson Valley and Suffolk County, and online.

More than 100,000 Adelphi graduates have gained the skills to thrive professionally as active, caring citizens, making their mark on the University, their communities and the world.

Tagged: Derner School of Psychology, Garden City