sassysage's Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Psychology

american hero and civil rights leader Dr. Olivia J. Hooker died on november 21st 2018 at 103 years old.  her long and trailblazing life has been written about and honored by many these last few weeks, including receiving her very own google veterans day doodle and a beautiful tribute on nbc today.

Dr. Hooker was a survivor of the infamous tulsa race massacre of 1921, otherwise known as ‘black wall street’.  She was the first african american woman to join the US coast guard in 1945.

she received her phd in psychology at university of rochester at a time when many people of color had limited access to any forms of higher education.  she went on to work with children and served as distinguished professor at fordham university. this is how i learned about her and had the pleasure of meeting her.  Dr. Hooker’s accolades are many.  but what makes her a hero and treasure to america was her boundless heart and honorable character.   

she took me in as one of her own.  i have vivid memories of taking the metro north from the bronx where i was a young doctoral student at fordham to white plains.  she would pick me up in her car and we would drive to her house.  she would offer me a home cooked meal and we would laugh the day away.  she drove down to fordham for my doctoral hooding, she cheered me on in completing my post doc, shouted with joy when i got my first job as a professor and we had a huge celebration the two of us when i got tenure!!

she was always encouraging but also clear about the challenges and barriers that lay before me as an african american female psychologist.  often our discussions would revolve about the great needs among youth in our communities.  the strength, energy and most of all passion that is needed to serve.  the importance of love, generosity and optimism.  she taught me that titles, honors and awards are nice if and when they happen. but the true mark of success is making a difference in the life of yourself and others.   

i watched with awe as through her 80s, 90s and even into her 100s, she kept serving.  living life fully until the end. it has been a true honor to know such an amazing spirit as my mentor and friend.  the beautiful small service to lay her to rest this past wednesday was so special; just like she was. she will be missed but never forgotten.   

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  • In: Uncategorized
  • Comments Off on Crowing A Queen: Dr. Olivia Hooker, 103, still making history

I’ve written many times before about my mentor and friend, Dr. Olivia Hooker.

She is 103 and is the only living survivor of the Tulsa Riots of 1921 (Black Wall Street). She was also the first Black woman to be selected to the US Coast Guard and she was a prominent Psychologist and Professor at my alma mater, Fordham University.   

Dr. Hooker was recently interviewed for NPR. Hear the story of how things happened during the riots when she was just 6 years old.  Incredible story for an incredible woman.

Listen to the 6 minute interview here

 

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Dr. hooker at 6 years old. photo credit NPR

at sassysage says we often highlight girls/women who are doing amazing things. this blog we are saluting chiara de blasio, daughter of the mayor elect of new york city.  

this morning she surprised everyone with a video of her courageously sharing her experience with clinical depression and substance abuse.  like thousands of other teen girls, her mental health and substance abuse got worse when she went away to college. be inspired by her journey.

she is so right when she says that we are not open enough about substance abuse and mental illness.   without help it’s a life or death situation that should not be swept under the rug.  she got the help she needed through therapy and as she says, ‘hard work’.  if you or someone you know needs assistance with substance abuse a great place for help is: http://www.phoenixhouse.org/

For easy to understand information about depression visit:

http://kidshealth.org/teen/your_mind/mental_health/depression.html

  • In: Uncategorized
  • Comments Off on Sage’s Rage: How’s your Mental ‘Fitness’

DChitwood_HappyGirlsgirls often fret about our looks.

do we have the right outfit on, is our hair looking good, are our thighs too big…the list goes on. 

physical fitness is all the rage. but have you ever thought about being mentally in shape?

i’m not talking about the absence of mental illness.  but being emotionally fit, happy and at peace; socially balanced and all around feeling strong in your mind.

seems like a lot of the talk about mental health focuses on the negative emotional problems people can have. and that is important but its not all mental health is about.

so today on world mental health day i’m challenging my girls to get in shape!

-start working out your heart by doing something you love at least once a week

-do repeated reps of saying nice things about yourself each day

-run wild with laughter as much as you can stand

-take time to care for yourself

that’s my mental health diet and the great part is chocolate is allowed!

mental-health-day-blog

We are very excited to announce

Dr. Scyatta A. Wallace, CEO/Founder of Janisaw Company,

has received academic tenure from St. John’s University.

Dr. Wallace is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology,

where she teaches and mentors undergraduate & PhD students.

She now joins the less than 5% of Associate Professors in the country who are African American

and one quarter of tenured faculty who are women.

Congratulations Dr. Wallace for shattering glass ceilings.

To learn more about her work at St. John’s University visit  www.stjohns.edu/academics/graduate/liberalarts/departments/psychology/faculty/wallaces



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