In this issue

Spotlight on Florida Psychological Association's president, Nekeshia Hammond, PsyD

Nekeshia Hammond shares the opportunities available for early career professionals in Florida.

By Eric Russ, PhD

Eric Russ, PhD APA convention was just a few weeks ago and I'm still energized from meeting with and hearing from Early Career Psychologists (ECP) across the country. At the state leadership forum, we had a fantastic discussion of how SPTAs can take a stand on important social issues. Many of these conversations are led by groups of ECPs in their respective SPTAs. Through these discussions, I realized the impact of the growing number of ECPs leading their SPTAs. This quarter, we highlight one of the ECP leaders: Nekeshia Hammond, Psy.D.

Hammond is current president of the Florida Psychological Association (FPA). I first met her at the Practice Leadership Conference several years ago. She is a fantastic leader and Florida is lucky to have her.

Hammond reports from Florida:

Nekeshia Hammond, Psy.D “Over the past couple of years, FPA has grown the services for ECPs. When I was FPA ECP chair back in 2015, we began to work on having ECP chairs throughout the state in each chapter. Since our state is so large, we have 13 chapters spread out throughout the state with its own set of chapter leaders, along with our executive board and Board of Directors at the state level. After we established more ECP chairs, we began initiatives to increase ECP activities, such as more networking activities and a page on our website to help ECPs. We also changed our definition of an ECP to follow APA's model of 10 years post doctorate degree (as opposed to our original seven years post licensure). In this manner, we allowed more individuals to identify as ECP to help more members. This year, I was excited that our leadership approved having the statewide ECP chair serve on the Board of Directors to offer recommendations and pertinent information for ECPs.

“A new initiative that the membership chair, ECP chair and I began this year is having virtual social hours for ECPs. We had our first ECP virtual social hour in August, and the feedback was the group would like to have more opportunities to communicate on a statewide level. We utilize the Zoom platform, which allows for video and teleconferencing. We are thrilled to begin bimonthly virtual social hours to discuss relevant topics to ECPs, such as the business of private practice, navigating employment, balancing work and family, and how to network efficiently.”

I really appreciate Hammond sharing the exciting opportunities for ECPs in Florida. We appreciate all the work that Florida ECPs put into their state association and look forward to more great things in the future.