Dr. Cirleen DeBlaere gives Seigel-Wallston Address

Dr. Cirleen DeBlaere gave the Seigel-Wallston Address at the 63rd annual meeting of the Southeastern Psychological Association (SEPA).  The talk was entitled, “Perceived Discrimination and Mental Health: Elucidating the Links and Identifying Potential Interventions.” Dr. DeBlaere discussed intersectionality theory and frameworks and how they have informed her research.  She also presented her research on discrimination and mental health links when multiple marginalized identities are considered in tandem.

Dr. DeBlaere is an Assistant Professor in the Counseling and Psychological Services department at GSU.  Her research focuses on the experiences of individuals with multiple and intersecting marginalized identities, with a particular emphasis on the experiences of women of color and sexual minority people of color.

“My work extends prior research that finds associations between perceived discrimination experiences and poorer mental health outcomes,” she shares.   “I examine multiple forms of discrimination simultaneously and their links to mental health among racial/ethnic minority women and sexual minority people. We can intervene to combat the negative impact of discrimination experiences on the well-being of marginalized people.”

DeBlaere has also begun to extend her work to investigate the impact of gender and racial microaggressions in counseling on therapy outcomes.  DeBlaere shares that she was honored to speak about her work and the work of her research team and colleagues.  “I especially appreciate the opportunity to connect with students who felt that their experiences were represented in my work.”

SEPA is the largest psychological organization in the Southeast.  Their mission is to stimulate the exchange of scientific and professional ideas across the areas of psychological inquiry and application.  SEPA consists of both professional and student members.