Columnists

March 21st, 2021

Dispatch from the COVID-19 vaccine scheduling front

By Alan Bodnar Ph.D.

Dateline: February 25, 2021, the little room at the top of the stairs.

The little room at the top of the stairs is quiet now. The extra chair where my wife sat with her Ipad is back in the bedroom where it belongs, our insurance cards are tucked safely into our wallets, and my Twitter feed with real-time updates on vaccine availability is silent. The smoke has cleared and so have our heads.

I am back here six hours after a four-hour battle this morning with various websites where I attempted and ultimately succeeded in scheduling an appointment for my first COVID-19 vaccine.…

November 6th, 2020

COVID-19 has tripled depression rate

By New England Psychologist Staff

A new study finds that 27.8 percent of U.S. adults had symptoms of depression as of mid-April 2020, compared to 8.5 percent before the COVID-19 pandemic.

“This represents a three-fold increase over what it was before COVID,” says lead author Catherine Ettman, a doctoral student at the Brown University School of Public Health and director of strategic development in the Office of the Dean at Boston University School of Public Health (BUSPH).

Not surprisingly, the study found that money was a defining factor in who was reporting new symptoms of depression.…

October 6th, 2020

Program for educators teaches social and emotional learning

By Catherine Robertson Souter

The state of Connecticut is looking to take the lead on creating an emotionally strong educational system. The Department of Education has joined forces with stakeholders across the state to pilot a unique program aimed at giving educators the tools they need to cope and to teach coping skills during the pandemic.

The program, “Social and Emotional Learning in Times of Uncertainty and Stress: Research-Based Strategies,” is a 10-hour online program for educators that will give instruction in social and emotional learning (SEL).

“The course is 10 hours of training in the psychology and neurobiology of trauma and stress resilience,” said Marc Bracket, Ph.D,…

August 18th, 2020

Running on comet time

By Alan Bodnar Ph.D.

There’s nothing like the appearance of a bright comet to remind us that beautiful surprises are always possible no matter what else is happening in the world. I had seen four of these celestial visitors over the years, Comets West, Halley, Hyakutake, and Hale-Bopp, and this summer of the corona virus brought the fifth, Comet NEOWISE.

In the past four months, NEOWISE increased in brightness as it made its closest approach to the sun and then began to dim as it swung around to the other side and started its return journey to the outer edge of the solar system.…