At the end of March, the Psi Chi chapter at MSP created the Psi Chi COVID-19 Response Relief Fund to provide some relief during this emergency and support students as they continue in their studies. To date, Psi Chi has given nearly $5,000 to MSP students. Below, Psi Chi President Michelle Justice (PsyD 3) talks about how the fund began.

It seems as though there is no escape from COVID-19. We hear about it on the news, through emails, our clients, our co-workers, our fellow students, our leadership, our family, and endless others. It is overwhelming.

During this time of pervasive anxiety, many people have also lost their jobs, providing a generous undercurrent of resource strain in addition to our already strained… everything. As many students return to their safe haven, the classroom, to be met with online faces and virtual lessons, we understand that attention is often elsewhere.

In times of stress, we go back to our roots. With a bow to Humanistic psychologists Carl Rogers and Abraham Maslow, we look to the Hierarchy of Needs that reminds us of the importance of fulfilling safety and physiological needs before we can focus on pursuits of belongingness and esteem.

The mission of Psi Chi is to promote excellence in academics in the field of psychology. How are we to help accomplish our purpose if we know our fellow members are struggling to fulfill their most essential needs?

The development of the Psi Chi COVID-19 Relief Fund came through quick action and collaboration from the Executive Committee, of which I could not be more proud. Through selfless minds and genuine empathy, Psi Chi started with $1000 and was honored to offer each student applicant with up to $200 in assistance to help relieve the burden that COVID-19 has left with us all.

Within hours of the release of the fund, multiple students applied, making it clear how much our community was in need. During that same time, we were deeply touched by many individuals that asked how they could personally contribute to the Relief Fund. Through support and donations, Psi Chi has approved assistance to 25 students and has provided $4980 in aid.

The fund is still open. We are still accepting applications. We are still providing students with much needed assistance and will continue for as long as possible. As well, we continue to accept donations of any amount, all of which goes directly to students. If you would like to donate, please click HERE and designate your donation to the “COVID-19 Relief Fund.”

Love for humanity is what drives many of us to become Psychologists; a light that is inherent in every individual. With each award, application, and donation, we send our love, our thanks, and as much healing as possible. 

Michelle Justice (PsyD 3)  is President of the Psi Chi Chapter at MSP.

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