Introduction to the Special Section from Recent Association of Psychologists in Academic Health Centers (APAHC) Programs
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The Association of Psychologists in Academic Health Centers (APAHC) offers programming at the annual American Psychological Association (APA) conventions as well as periodic APAHC conferences. Participants from academic health centers across the country convened in St. Louis, Missouri, October 15–17, 2009, for the 4th National Conference of the Association of Psychologists in Academic Health Centers (APAHC). The title of the conference was ‘‘Psychologists in Academic Health Centers: Facing Tomorrow’s Challenges to AHC Programs and Careers.’’ Efforts were made to include topics relevant to academic health center (AHC) practice including the unique challenges of working in AHCs and issues pertinent to the different stages of AHC careers. To facilitate networking, opportunities for discussion among conferees and presenters with shared interests and concerns were provided throughout the conference. This paper introduces the special section of JCPMS dedicated to the conference and provides a brief overview of its development and organization. Articles selected for inclusion represent a sampling of the four conference themes: (1) challenges to AHC programs, (2) staying current in critical clinical areas, (3) professional issues and challenges, and (4) challenges to developing careers. Post-conference evaluation data are presented as evidence of the need for further conferences with similar foci. The programming offered by APAHC at the APA convention in San Diego in 2010 built on the themes offered at the 2009 APAHC conference.
KeywordsAcademic health centers APAHC Conference Career stages
The authors would like to acknowledge sponsors of the 2009 conference: APA Division 12 (Clinical), APA Division 38 (Health), American Board of Clinical Health Psychology (ABCHP), Pearson Assessments, and the APAHC Board of Directors and Conference Committee: Sharon Berry, Ron Brown, Barbara Cubic, Kim E. Dixon (Co-chair), Richard Handel, Barry Hong, Cheryl King, Robert K. Klepac, (Co-chair), John C. Linton, Kimberly McClanahan, William Robiner, John D. Robinson, Katheryn Sanders, and Patrick O. Smith.