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Department of Psychology

College of Arts & Sciences

Issue 1

The following is the letter from the chair that appeared in the Summer 2001 edition of Psychology Now

Letter from the Chair
Hello to all our alums and friends of the Psychology Department at UW.  We are launching our Psychology Department Newsletter and hope you enjoy our first issue.  We'd like to use this newsletter as a way of keeping you informed about the department, as well as bring you news and information about former classmates.  We hope you enjoy this issue and that you'll take the time to send us a letter, fax, or e-mail to let us know what you are doing.  We'd love to include your information on our new alumni web page and in our next newsletter.  But I'm getting ahead of myself.  Let me tell you of all the things that have been going on in the department.

    First, some of you may be surprised that I'm the chair of the department.  This happened in a sneaky way.  First, I agreed to serve as interim chair for one year while we tried to hire someone for the position.  We weren't successful in getting someone for the position and I was asked to go ahead and be the actual chair....not the interim chair.  In a moment of weakness I said yes.  Seriously, its been a fun but challenging job.  In many ways, being chair is like being in Public Relations.  Our department and its graduates have been successful in so many ways.  My job is to make sure everyone, from the University President to the potential undergraduate major, knows it.  One of the ways we are improving our "image" is in the redesign of our departmental web page.

    As you all know web pages have become an important advertising tool in today's world.  This year, we took a good look at our web pages and realized that our page didn't show off the best features of the department.  Hopefully you remember those features; friendly faculty, opportunities for one-on-one mentoring, and the great outdoor opportunities to name a few.  Notice I didn't mention anything about the wind or the bad weather.  Anyway, we hired a local firm to help us develop a new web site that would more accurately represent the department.  We've added an alumni page so we can post information about our alums.  If you are getting married, having a baby, landing a new job, we would love to hear from you and include your information on our page. 

    Other news from our department includes the departure of one of our long time faculty.  Gary Levy was offered an administrative position at the University of Utah and has left the department.  The job sounds like an exciting opportunity for Gary but we're sorry to see him go.  Any of you who had any of Dr. Levy's classes know what a UW Cowboys fan he was.  I can't help but wonder which sweatshirt he'll be wearing at future Cowboy vs Ute games.  If any of you are at one of those games and spot him, let us know what he was wearing.

    This letter wouldn't be complete if I didn't tell you of some of the psychology graduates the I've run into over the year.  First, one of the graduates Merit Thomas (Gilbert, '79) was recently named to the position of Director of Protective Services for the State of Wyoming.  I used to run into Merit in her former position as Supervisor for the Division of Juvenile Services for the state, but haven't seen her since this appointment.  I guess the job is keeping her very busy.  Valerie Seidel (Geringer, '91) is the new Development & Human Resources Coordinator at Frontier Corrections in Cheyenne.  She has two children and it sounds as if she's doing very well.  Christel Andersen ('99) e-mails me occasionally from half way across the world to let me know how she's doing.  Christel is in the Peace Corps and is serving in Turkmenistan.  It sounds like she has a challenging job, but is learning to love the area food, which according to Christel consists mostly of potatoes, bread, and squash.  Finally, I had the pleasure of running into two former students at a recent conference.  I had the pleasure of talking with Carol Cheatham ('99) and her daughter, and heard that she's enjoying her graduate work at the University of Minnesota.  The other student was Patty Davies ('95), one of our Ph.D. graduates.  Patty is on the faculty at CSU after having spent some time in New York.  It sounds as if she and her husband Bill are happy to be back in the Rocky Mountain region and are doing well.  One student I didn't run into at the conference...though she was there is Leigh Shaw (Stokes,'94).  Leigh is completing her Ph.D. at the University of Utah and was offered a position as a faculty member at an upstate New York University.  Leigh decided not to accept that position and she and her husband Garth will stay in Utah for an extra year.

    I could tell you so much more about the department, our plans for next year, etc.  But I'm running out of room in this letter.  I guess I'll have to sign off and say, hope this newsletter finds you in good health and that we'll hear from you soon. 

Dr. Narina L. Nunez
Professor and Chair

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