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BLACK HISTORY MONTH –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Academic Work and Leadership as a Black Woman Interview With Loretta McGregor, PhD Seungyeon Lee, PhD University of Arkansas at Monticello

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EYE ON PSI CHI SPRING 2021

Educational Board’s Doctoral Scholar’s Program as the first in Arkansas. She is the 2020 recipient of APA’s Division 2 Presidential Citation for outstanding service to the program and to psychology. She is the first person of color to receive this honor, but believes her greatest contributions were achieved outside the discipline.

Thank you for joining us today, Loretta. I read your bio and was impressed with your outstanding work. First, what motivated your interest in psychology? I’m originally from Arkansas. I used to sit on my grandfather’s knee, watching the nightly news—CBS News with Walter Cronkite. I remember a scene from the Vietnam War and listening to the commentary, which I really didn’t understand. I kept wondering what we had in common with homes being destroyed, families looking for shelter, people being killed … in what appeared to be a senseless war, with college students protesting all over the United States. I kept thinking, “What would happen if my home got destroyed? What would happen to my family? I wondered about people in a global way, both the similarities and differences. I began to understand that people were more alike than not. That triggered my deep interest in psychology, and I am still looking for similarities among all human beings.

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Photo Credit: Provided by Loretta McGregor, PhD

F

ebruary is Black History Month, providing an opportunity to recognize the impact of Black Americans and other minority groups, both nationally and internationally. The year 2020 brought devastating challenges along with the COVID-19 pandemic, the Black Lives Matter protests, and general political unrest. Many individuals did things differently this year, while maintaining social distance and staying connected to the media. Ambiguity, bias, gender stereotypes, and racism prevented Black and minority groups from achieving their full potential, along with economic turmoil. In 2021, we want to foster positivity and leadership roles for all. This interview will be a call to action for collective growth, as well as ways in which the field of psychology can benefit society. Dr. Loretta Neal McGregor (LNM) is a highly motivated African American scholar, having overcome challenges during her academic career. She is a professor of psychology and the past president of the Faculty Senate at Arkansas State University (ASU) in Jonesboro. She has been a member of the ASU for 15 years, and was the chairperson of the Department of Psychology and Counseling for eight years. She received her BA in psychology from Ouachita Baptist University, AR, and her MS in general experimental psychology from Emporia State University in Emporia, KS, while earning her doctoral degree in human factor psychology at Wichita State University in Wichita, KS. She is a fellow at the Southern Regional

Eye on Psi Chi – Spring 2021  

For more than 20 years, the Eye has helped shape aspiring young minds majoring/minoring in psychology. Features about career advice and grad...

Eye on Psi Chi – Spring 2021  

For more than 20 years, the Eye has helped shape aspiring young minds majoring/minoring in psychology. Features about career advice and grad...

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