Rwandan Trauma Expert Dr. Vincent Sezibera to Speak on "Psychological Consequences of Genocide: From Trauma to Resilience"









 The Chicago School of Professional Psychology Commemorates the 1994 Genocide Against the Tutsi in Rwanda


WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 5, 2011) - Although he never actually mentioned Rwanda by name, President Obama's address on March 28, 2011 regarding the United States action in Libya so invoked the image of Rwanda in 1994 that almost every commentator referenced the genocide against the Tutsi. Ironically, the most recent discussion of America's failure to intervene in the genocide that killed between 800,000 and one million Tutsi in Rwanda came just a week before the 17th anniversary of the beginning of that 100-day massacre on April 7, 1994.  

As the global community reflects on the tragedy that took place as the world stood by, The Center for African Psychology at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Washington, D.C. will hold a very special event focused on the consequences of trauma and the tremendous resilience of the Rwandan people. Speaker Dr. Vincent Sezibera is the senior lecturer in the department of clinical psychology at the National University of Rwanda, and an outpatient consultant and therapist at the University's Center for Mental Health. His scholarly work centers on post-traumatic stress disorder and child and adolescent traumatic grief. Dr. Sezibera holds a Ph.D. in Psychology from the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium, focused on trauma and bereavement among young survivors of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda.

"I am particularly interested in how social and economic programs and networks impact resiliency post-trauma," said Dr. Sezibera. "Thankfully, Rwandans start with a culture and social cognitions that are based in hope and optimism. Yet it is the social and economic support that not only helps the survivors of genocide to sustain hope, but to actually develop internal resiliency. And that has implications for trauma survivors across the world."

Dr. Sezibera is visiting the United States as a Fulbright Scholar in Residence through a joint proposal of The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in Chicago and Harold Washington College (HWC), one of the City Colleges of Chicago.  In addition to lecturing at both institutions, Dr. Sezibera will work with Dr. Nancy Dubrow, director of the Center for International Studies and associate professor at The Chicago School, and Dr. Sammie Dortch, chair of the applied science department at HWC, and their colleagues to develop on and off campus colloquia and to produce a scholarly publication on "The Effect of Violence on Children and Youth from Chicago to Rwanda."

Dr. Sezibera will speak at 10 am on April 7, 2011 at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology, 901 15th Street NW, Washington, D.C. The public is invited and the event is free but space is limited. To ensure a seat, R.S.V.P. to


About The Chicago School of Professional Psychology

Founded in 1979, The Chicago School of Professional Psychology (TCSPP) is the nation's leading nonprofit graduate school dedicated exclusively to the applications of psychology and related behavioral sciences. The school is an active member of the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology, which has recognized TCSPP for its distinguished service and outstanding contributions to cultural diversity and advocacy. The school's community service initiatives have resulted in three consecutive years of recognition on the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, including the additional "With Distinction" honor in 2010.  In 2009, the school was named to The Chronicle of Higher Education's annual list of "Great Colleges to Work For." Campuses are located in Chicago; in Los Angeles, Westwood, and Irvine, California; and the newest campus in Washington, D.C. Doctoral psychology programs and masters psychology programs are offered on-ground and in an Online format.

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