2021 John Shaughnessy Psychology Lecture

Wednesday, February 24 at 3:30pm

Virtual Event

Adolescent addiction will be the focus of a virtual lecture hosted by Hope College on Wednesday, Feb. 24, at 3:30 p.m.  The event may be viewed via Zoom at

The address, “Understanding Adolescent Addiction in the Context of Development: What every psychologist should know,” will be by Dr. Sandra A. Brown, a Hope graduate who is the Distinguished Professor of Psychology and vice chancellor for research at the University of California, San Diego.  She will be speaking through the college’s annual John Shaughnessy Psychology Lecture Series.

Brown will discuss implications for psychological science, mental health care and life.  She will draw on discoveries from her career in clinical research on adolescent substance use and intervention.

The presentation is free.  Out of an abundance of caution due to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, there will be no in-person audience.

After graduating from Hope with majors in psychology and mathematics, Brown pursued her Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Wayne State University. She is internationally recognized for her developmentally focused alcohol and drug research.  Her research yielded pioneering information on adolescent addiction, relapse among youth, and long-term outcomes of youth who have experienced alcohol and drug problems.

She is the past president of Division 50 (Addictions) of the American Psychological Association, is on the executive board of numerous scientific organizations, and has more than 35 grants and 350 publications.  She is involved in addiction prevention and intervention at the regional, state and national levels, and helped lead the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) effort to establish national screening and early intervention guidelines for youth.  She currently directs the National Consortium on Alcohol and Neurodevelopment in Adolescence (NCANDA) and investigates the effectiveness of novel approaches to intervention with youth.

The lecture series through which Brown will be speaking honors the student-focused legacy of Dr. John Shaughnessy, a professor emeritus of psychology who died on Dec. 16, 2015, and was highly regarded for both his teaching and his commitment to engaging students in collaborative research.  He was a member of the Hope faculty for 40 years, from 1975 through 2015, teaching even during the fall of 2015 after retiring the previous spring.  He taught the college’s research methods course to nearly 2,500 students, and his research methods textbook remains among the top 40 psychology textbooks adopted, based on a worldwide analysis of syllabi. Among other honors at Hope, he received the Hope Outstanding Professor Educator (H.O.P.E.) Award from the graduating class in 1992 and the college’s “Janet L. Andersen Excellence in Teaching Award” in 2008.  The annual lecture series, which is funded through an endowment and debuted in March of 2017, features psychology alumni who in addition to giving a presentation interact with students, demonstrating ways in which their Hope psychology education informs and shapes their work.


Event Type

Academics, Social Sciences Division, Psychology, Campus-Life, Alumni, Alumni Highlight

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