The Michigan Society for Psychoanalytic Psychology
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From the President
Etta G. Saxe, Ph.D.
In the last few months, with the MSPP substantive projects and programs through which we pursue our goals and objectives thriving, the Executive Board has turned to those inevitable internal matters necessary to support our work and relevant to maintaining the ongoing functioning of the society. In this, the last column of my presidential term, I want to take the opportunity to report about these discussions and the current state of functioning of MSPP. In our 23rd year as a local chapter of the Division of Psychoanalysis, MSPP has many significant accomplishments to report and a number of challenges to its ongoing functioning for which member assistance is currently being sought.
Seven members of the executive committee have regularly participated in the above-mentioned discussions. These individuals are: Susan Greenshields, Ph.D., Secretary; Raymond J. Vasser, Ph.D., Treasurer; Gloria E. Cruice, Ph.D., Past President; Barry Dauphin, Ph.D., Section IV Representative; Terri I. Egan, Ph.D., Web Editor; Cynthia McLoughlin, Ph.D., Editor, MSPP News, and myself, President and Program Chair. These individuals, with the assistance of Kathleen Kremser Nelson, Ph.D., who serves on the Secretarial Committee, have carried forth the work of MSPP in the last year.
I go on to describe our deliberations I want to thank each and every one
of them for his/her extraordinary and successful efforts in maintaining
the substantive, organizational and
administrative work of
MSPP over the last year and for those on-board through my full term of
office for their efforts of the last two years. Each has demonstrated
competence and commitment in growing his/her specific area, each has
also very importantly worked on Board projects and
participated in board deliberations in all matters of
concern to MSPP and its ongoingness of goals and being.
our recent deliberations we have taken a look at the various
offices/areas of responsibility and at the specific functions and tasks
falling under each office/position, whether vacant or occupied.
We have considered how and by whom tasks necessary to sustaining
MSPP are being accomplished and which tasks, while technically falling
under a position, have not been accomplished satisfactorily, if at all.
We have thus come to understand that some reconfiguring of organization
maintaining tasks and functions is necessary. We have also come to
understand that for most if not all offices/roles, the reconfiguring
needs to include the perspective that the role/office be seen as
including being a committee chair who would coordinate volunteer
individuals working on specific tasks in a time-limited and
task-specific manner. It is
our hope that we would find among the members of
MSPP some individuals who would find themselves able to make such
an investment in support of the goals and purposes of our Society.
is maintaining its membership numbers at a steady level over the last
few years. While a few
individuals have not renewed their membership, some new members join us
each year. While we are not
among the largest local chapters, as we once were, our numbers place us
solidly in the middle among the 29 local chapters. Nevertheless, a
recent search indicates that through our active, well-designed and
well-thought-through cyber presence, www.mspp.net, we are listed among
the first twenty groups found by entering the words Michigan,
psychoanalysis and/or psychology in the Google search engine.
Since one of our major goals is psychoanalytic education and
public information (article II, MSPP bylaws) each member can feel
satisfied that through his/her membership, each is indeed working
"for psychoanalytic psychology."
maintaining of our membership is a major organizational task of MSPP
which requires yearly effort and specific time commitments to allow for
a smooth and respectful process through which individual members are
able to continue their commitment to being “for psychoanalytic
psychology.” MSPP is
currently in need of individuals who would be willing to assist the
Treasurer in this vital area. Such
assistance would not require attendance at meetings.
It would require a commitment of a negotiable and specified
amount of time mostly between September and December.
It would further require some computer skills.
I began my term of office as president, MSPP had done some significant
reorganization of tasks and functions in line with its economic
circumstances and it fell to the efforts of the last year and a half to
implement these changes and carefully monitor our financial resources in
relationship to those tasks and activities which are required to
maintain a functioning society as well as to fulfill the substantive
goals inherent in our bylaws. I
am pleased to report that we have been able to live within our strict
budget and we have been doing so while maintaining our programs,
communication with members and the larger professional and lay/public
communities, our educational imperatives such as the newsletter and
website and our presence within Section IV of Division of Psychoanalysis
(39). We have also done so while directing considerable energy towards
public efforts geared to holding open the space for diversity in
psychoanalytic thinking and practicing in the current climate of
increasing centralized bureaucratic management of options and
information. In part this is made possible through the use of electronic
communication, which has substituted for the expensive paper
communication of our monthly brochures and with the addition of e-mail
communication with most of our members. In addition we have done this
through our website, which regularly contains the MSPP
News, program announcements, an archive of previous volumes of the News
and information about important
topics of the day, such as MCE.
Through the coordinated efforts of the Website Editor and the News
Editor, information is available in a time-sensitive manner and
reaches people who
were previously sent communications through our extended mailing list as
well as many interested others “out there.”
such changes reduced monetary costs they do not come free of all costs.
Tasks previously paid for are now performed by officers and board
members and there are now fewer people taking on the commitments of
offices and positions. Therefore members of the Board, particularly our
Editors and Secretary, are called upon to offer substantial
time and effort in maintaining our electronic communication
system. This is one of the areas where those responsible for the
specific tasks find themselves in need of assistance from members who
are willing and have the
skills to offer the society assistance with specific and time-limited
tasks. The specific responsibilities in these areas and the time any
individual member might be able to offer, while not entirely free-form,
are viewed as negotiable within the specifics of the tasks and the
reasonably flexible time frames for them.
you find yourself interested in participating more in MSPP by offering
the kinds of assistance described in this column or if you find yourself
with some other ideas as to how to contribute to MSPP, please get in
touch with me. I prefer e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
If e-mail is unavailable please feel free to call me at (734)
those who are planning to attend APA in Toronto, there will be a debate
taking place about Evidence Based Treatment. Two members of Division 39
will be debating two psychologists from Division 12 on the establishment
of Evidence Based Treatment (EBT) as the Standard of Care. I urge people
to attend, ask questions and contribute comments as this issue is very
important to the survival of psychoanalytic work within psychology.
For those who are not members of Division 39 but who like to visit the website of the Division of Psychoanalysis, this site has had a major makeover and has changed its address. It can now be found at www.Division39.org
Program Chair and President I want to thank all of those who have
presented at our meetings and have thus enriched MSPP and
offered us the opportunity to
hear their ideas, discuss their work and think with them about their
ideas. I want to also thank
all who have attended our meetings, listened and participated in the
discussions. This process is a major one through which we are able to
fulfill our educational objectives.
For helping to provide the context
in which this process can live, I want, in closing, to thank all
the members of the MSPP
Board and those beyond the Board who have worked with us on specific
issues/problems for a very busy, interesting and satisfying term of