Newsletter Section

Letter from the Chair

Letter from the Chair

Cheryl Kaiser

Our winter newsletter provides an opportunity to express gratitude to our community for generously supporting the Department of Psychology.  Your support is critical to our success and impact in psychological science, the classroom, and society----thank you! I am proud to share our accomplishments with you in this newsletter, and I hope you enjoy catching up on all that is happening in Psychology.


With help from our alumni and friends, we provide more than $115,000 to support our undergraduate and graduate students each year.  This student support sends our undergraduate and graduate students to professional conferences, provides opportunities to pursue independent research questions, and recognizes excellence in writing, teaching, and science. This year we are proud to announce the inaugural Barbara Sarason Endowed Fellowship for Graduate Students, a generous gift to Psychology from Emeritus Professor Irwin Sarason in honor of his late wife and our former faculty colleague. With your support, we can attract and nurture the best and brightest students from a wide variety of backgrounds and life experiences to produce the world’s most innovative scientists, clinicians, and much more. Indeed, our undergraduate majors are recent recipients of UW’s highest honors including the Sophomore Medal, the Aker’s Scholarship, the Bonderman Fellowship, the Husky 100 Award, and the President’s Medal. Our graduate students publish papers in premier scientific outlets, and are the recipients of numerous fellowships and awards, including those from the National Institute of Health, the National Science Foundation, and the Ford Foundation.

Your support also plays a significant role in attracting and retaining the world’s best faculty talent. This winter quarter, we welcome Assistant Professor Cynthia Levine, a social and health psychologist who investigates health disparities, and who will bring a new course on this topic to our undergraduates. I am also proud to announce that we have launched the Dr. Marsha M. Linehan Endowed Chair Campaign to fund a faculty position honoring the legacy of Professor Linehan, whose groundbreaking research has shaped the face of how we treat complex mental health issues and those at risk for death by suicide. Our goal is to complete this campaign by the end of spring quarter when we celebrate Dr. Linehan's career at her retirement ceremony. Our faculty are leaders in their scientific fields, and are regularly recognized with professional leadership positions and honors. This past year was particularly special in that Associate Professor Kristina Olson was named both the Waterman Award recipient and a MacArthur Fellow. The Waterman Award recognizes the best early career scientist in the nation, and Dr. Olson is UW’s first professor to ever receive this award. The MacArthur Award is commonly known as the “genius grant.” Additionally, Professor Tony Greenwald won the Golden Goose award from the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) for his implicit bias research. Finally, Professor Geoffrey Boynton received an NSF grant that will bring a state-of-the-art three million dollar MRI machine to UW to enhance our scientific community’s ability to produce cutting-edge neuroimaging research. We’re so proud of all our faculty accomplishments and UW Psychology's contributions to science and society.

Please consider making a gift to the Friends of Psychology so we can continue to advance our educational and scientific mission, and make advances that benefit our local, national, and global communities. If you would like to discuss how you can play a role in supporting our department, my door is open.