A Teacher's Teacher: Stan Berman, New VP of Academic Affairs
"It's just a different vantage point," says Dr. Stanley Berman when asked about his new role at William James College as Vice President of Academic Affairs. He admits that in this demanding position, he spends more time in meetings and less in the classroom, but teaching is never far from his heart and continues to be the essence of his commitment to the school.
"Training skilled and compassionate professionals is still my primary mission," he says. "It's just on a larger scale." As Vice President for Academic Affairs, he is responsible for all aspects of scholarly life at William James College and the development and refinement of every academic program.
Anyone who knows Berman understands why he was chosen. "Stan's inclusive management style along with his deep clinical knowledge and passion for sharing makes him a talented teacher and a creative leader of teachers," says President Nick Covino. Teaching is never far from his heart and continues to be the essence of his commitment to the school.
Teaching is never far from his heart and continues to be the essence of his commitment to the school.
Berman began teaching at William James College 26 years ago. And, although for nearly nine years he was dean of Programs of Advanced Graduate Studies, responsible for new program development, he always found time to teach. Even today, he leads two seminars each year: Theoretical Foundations of Clinical Health Psychology and Foundations of Global Mental Health II. "I think it's important for me to get myself in the classroom as much as possible, not only because I love it, but because it helps me understand the challenges that students and faculty face today."
Staying attuned to societal needs and creating programs that can meet those needs with a new generation of mental health professionals is a high priority, he notes, as is supporting faculty and faculty scholarship, continuing to contribute to a culturally diverse and globally focused curriculum and nurturing the personal and professional growth of students.
Another challenge, of course, "is finding your bearings as an educator in a digital age," he says, adding that one of his major goals is "to continue creating new models that incorporate cutting-edge educational technology in the traditional classroom as well as in blended programs that are both onsite and online."
In a recent interview with New England Psychologist, he said: "At the end of the day, if a student graduates saying the programs were of a high caliber and well-integrated and there was rigorous and demanding class work and a caring community with good resources, then I feel like the faculty, staff and I delivered the quality that I hope to deliver each day."