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In the news: Natalie Cort

In the news: Natalie Cort

Natalie Cort, the co-director of the Center for Multicultural & Global Mental Health and an associate professor in the clinical psychology department at William James College, has been named the 2023 Teacher of the Year by the Massachusetts Psychological Association.

“Dr. Natalie Cort is an exceptional educator, an exemplary mentor, and a distinguished leader in her field,” said Gemima St. Louis, vice president for the college’s workforce initiatives. “I cannot think of anyone else who is more deserving of this honor.” Cort directs the college’s Black Mental Health Graduate Academy, an award-winning mentoring and leadership pipeline program designed to recruit and retain Black students pursuing careers in psychology and mental health counseling.

The MPA Teacher of the Year Award is presented to professors who promote an interest in the field of psychology to students, develop effective teaching methods and courses, and has demonstrated experience within and outside the university setting.

In the past 15 years, Cort has earned a reputation as a clinical and research expert on racial and ethnic disparities in the mental health field. She also serves as the associate director and co-principal investigator of the college’s Specialized Training and Academic Retention Fellowship.

Last year, Cort launched WJC’s institution-wide Teaching Faculty Fellowship, an initiative created to attract and prepare faculty members from underrepresented backgrounds for careers in higher education.

Cort, a research grade psychiatric diagnostician consultant, has been an investigator, intervention developer, clinician, and interpersonal psychotherapy trainer on 11 research trials and programs funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

She has co-authored peer-reviewed journal articles and a practitioner guide on racial/ethnic differences in youth mental health, child abuse reporting practices, high-risk sexual behaviors, age-discordant sexual relationships, and depression treatment outcomes, officials said.

Cort, an immigrant of Afro- and Indo-Caribbean cultural background from Guyana in South America, has said that her personal experiences spurred her to challenge ethnocentric and monocultural practices in the mental health field.

Through her company, Cort Consulting and Counseling, Cort provides leadership coaching, professional development training, and consultation to ensure the promotion of culturally responsive and trauma-informed organizational policies and practices.

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