During the third full week of April, the Veterans Health Administration celebrates VA Psychology Recognition Week to acknowledge the contributions of psychologists to the care of veterans at VA Medical Centers. The history of psychology is inextricably intertwined with that of VA, as the creation and growth of VA led to a dramatic increase in the need for psychologists to provide care for World War II veterans.
VA trains and employs more psychologists than any entity in the United States. Our rich training environment has led to recruitment of many psychology trainees to VA careers, as 70 percent of psychologists currently employed at VA trained at a VA facility.
VA psychologists provide a range of services to VA and to veterans, and serve in clinical, research, educational, and administrative roles. VA psychologists are integral to the care of veterans, and during this week, we ask you to thank a psychologist for their service.
Ideas for celebrating VA Psychology Recognition Week
celebrations with light refreshments
poster and electronic bulletin displays
social media posts
videos/literature to educate the public on the contributions of VA psychologists to veterans healthcare
How we celebrated in 2020 (April 20–24)
While many facilities started planning for the second annual VA Psychology Recognition Week months in advance, the coronavirus pandemic left many resorting to alternative, more limited activities. Given the social gathering restrictions in place at the time, some facilities hosted virtual celebration sessions or recognized VA psychologists over email and social media. While some facilities considered deferring their events until after physical distancing mandates lifted, many others thought the recognition could serve as a morale boost during a very stressful time. VA psychologists appreciated the video message from Arthur Evans Jr., PhD, celebrating the second annual event. We hope to celebrate each other together next year.
How we celebrated in 2019 (April 15–19)
As this was the inaugural year, it was impressive how many VA Medical Centers participated in the week of recognition. Activities included celebrations with light refreshments, staff wellness activities, and videos educating the public on the roles of psychologists in the VA. Video-recorded messages from Arthur Evans Jr, PhD, and Heather Kelly, PhD, were highlights of the week.
Last updated: November 2021Date created: January 2020