How Do We Define Socially Responsible Practitioners?

Adler is based on the principle that we prepare students as socially responsible practitioners—educated to be effective personal and social change agents in the pursuit of justice. What does that mean?

We talked to the faculty director of academic programs at our Online Campus to get their definitions of what socially responsible practice looks like in emergency management, industrial and organizational psychology, media and communications, military psychology, and nonprofit management.

Michelle DennisMichelle Dennis, Ph.D., Program Director, M.A. in Industrial and Organizational Psychology

The majority of life is spent at work, so it makes sense that social justice is of particular importance on the job. Industrial organizational psychologists address issues of inequality by encouraging fair hiring practices, increasing diversity and raising cultural competence, and advocating for ethical and empathic behavior.

Davina JonesDavina Jones, Ph.D., Program Director, M.A. in Media and Communications

Nearly impossible to refute is the power of media and communication to influence social change. At any given moment, an image, a post, an event, or a speech can define a movement. Our students and faculty explore the innovative paths of our craft with an emphasis on our ability to responsibly contribute to a more just society.

Leslie StarsoneckLeslie Starsoneck, M.A., Interim Program Director, M.A. in Nonprofit Management

Many groups of people are disproportionately represented in many of our systems, such as corrections and the child welfare system. Working to recognize that disproportionate representation, educate about it, and advocate for change by proposing and working for specific solutions is the focus of socially responsible practice in our Nonprofit Management program.

Joe TroianiJoseph Troiani, Ph.D., Program Director, M.A. in Psychology: Specialization in Military Psychology and Acting Program Director, M.A. in Emergency Management Leadership

Veterans have significantly higher rates of suicide, psychological problems, homelessness, alcoholism and substance use disorders, and engagement in the criminal justice system. Our graduates are prepared to address these issues by reducing stigma of mental health issues—which remains a major barrier to veterans seeking and receiving help; promoting military cultural competency within the healthcare industry; and through political advocacy.

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