MPA’s Mission, Vision and Value

In many things I have written for the Minnesota Psychologist over the years, in our old print version through our PDF version and now in our online version, I have talked about getting engaged in MPA—how important, even crucial, member engagement is.  Now I want to return to that topic, but also to look at what comes first before engagement—namely membership.

The desire to support MPA’s mission, “To serve the science of psychology and its applications throughout Minnesota so the interests of public welfare and psychologists are mutually enhanced,” is a great reason to become a member. Similarly, our vision, “to be a thriving community of psychologists that exists for the purpose of genuinely serving the public and the field of psychology,” provides an excellent reason for membership.

The MPA Governing Council (GC), at its strategic planning meeting in the fall of 2012, also identified providing a scientific and professional home that fosters “connection, protection and growth” as a value MPA provides for its members.  We used that value statement as a theme for the 2014 Annual Convention, and we continue to provide that value through the convention, education and training events, legislative advocacy, working with payers, fostering a mentoring program and providing listservs that make connection easier, to mention just a few of the avenues MPA is pursuing.

Among the education and training events that are coming soon are three full day conferences that provide high value for MPA members while also enhancing the well being of our state.  The first of these will take place on Sept 19, “Hot Topics in Ethics and Risk Management in Psychological Practice,” byEric A. Harris, Ed.D., J.D.  Dr. Harris is a licensed psychologist and attorney in Massachusetts.  He received his J.D. from Harvard Law School and his Ed.D. in Clinical Psychology and Public Practice from the Harvard University School of Education.  Dr. Harris is also the legal counsel to the Massachusetts Psychological Association, where he served as the Director of Professional Affairs for ten years.  He currently serves on the APA/ASPPB/Trust Joint Task Force on the Development of Telepsychology Guidelines for Psychologists.

The second event is the Sixth Annual Rural Behavioral Health Practice Conference on October 24, which will occur live in Morris, Minnesota and be available as a webinar in over 25 locations across at least eight states—evidence of MPA’s leadership in rural health matters.  More information and registration for this event will be available soon on the MPA website.

The third event is MPA’s annual President’s Conference, this year occurring on November 10 on the Minneapolis campus of the University of St. Thomas, and covering “The Neurobiology of Kindness and Trauma-Sensitive Services in Integrated Care.”  The presenter, Maggie Bennington-Davis, M.D., has expertise in trauma impacts and trauma informed care as well as integrated behavioral and medical services, and she serves as the chief operating officer and chief medical officer for Cascadia Behavioral Health in Portland, Oregon.  Again, watch the MPA website for additional information including registration details.

These are just three of the many education and training events that MPA offers, and hopefully we have all sampled others from the excellent First Friday Forum series.  Please check the website for upcoming Forums, and please consider sharing your interests and expertise as a presenter in 2015 forums.   The MPA Education and Training Committee is accepting CE proposals for 2015 at the following address, and has started to review proposals:

I could go on and on with reference to other things of value that MPA does (legislative advocacy, payer relations, etc.), but let me shift slightly to ask the question, “What else would be of value to you as a MPA member or potential member?”  The Governing Council discussed the topic of enhancing the value of MPA membership at our July 26 meeting, which provided groundwork for a broader and deeper discussion at our annual strategic planning meeting, this year occurring on September 27.  We would love to hear your responses to this question, because a thriving membership is crucial to MPA achieving its mission and vision, and because membership thrives when MPA brings values to our members.  Please let us know what you think by sending your ideas to us, using the Question/Comment tab at the bottom of the MPA home page at

Thanks in advance for your ideas and suggestions, and thanks for everything you are already doing to advance the mutual interests of psychologists and the public welfare.

Steven M. Vincent, Ph.D., L.P., recently retired as Director of Behavioral Health Services, CentraCare Health System.  Dr. Vincent is the current President of MPA, having served two terms on the Governing Council from 2003 to 2009, and as Legislative Committee Chair from 2004-2012.  Steve was also on the Governing Council of the American Hospital Association Section on Psychiatric and Substance Abuse Services from 2010 through 2012.  He was the founding chair of the Minnesota Hospital Association’s Mental Health Task Force.  He can be reached at [email protected].

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