Diversity Research Grant For Pre-Doctoral Candidates

2016 Grant Recipient

Title: Understanding the concept of enmeshment in Arab American families
Author: Nour Mahmoud Abdelghani
Institution: University of Indianapolis

Nour Abdelghani, MA

Nour Abdelghani, MA


The intersection of Arab cultural values and enmeshment is an area that is speculated about in clinical practice, but that is underrepresented in the literature. The concept of enmeshment, first presented by Salvador Minuchin (1974) is one that has been studied among Western families largely within the Western culture. In this study, Twelve to fifteen Arab American mothers will be recruited using snowball sampling. Participants will take part in a semi-structured interview and complete a descriptive demographic questionnaire. The interview data will be analyzed using the consensual qualitative research (CQR) method (Hill, 2012). This study is the first of its kind to examine elements of enmeshment among Arab American families using family systems theory and the Circumplex Model of Marital and Family Systems (Olson, Sprenkle & Russell, 1979). This study seeks to better understand the relationship between Arab American mothers and their children, and how acculturative stress impacts the parent-child relationship for this population. The results of this study will aid mental health clinicians working with Arab American families in providing culturally appropriate services for this understudied but growing population.

The Society for the Advancement of Psychotherapy (Division 29) Diversity Research Grant for Pre-Doctoral Candidates

The Diversity Research Grant for pre-doctoral candidates was established to foster the promotion of diversity within Division 29 and within the profession of psychotherapy.

The Division may award annually two $2,000 Diversity Research Grant to pre-doctoral candidates (enrolled in a clinical or counseling psychology doctoral program) who are currently conducting dissertation research that promotes diversity, as outlined by the American Psychological Association (APA).  According to the APA, diversity is defined as individual and role differences, including those based on age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, race, ethnicity, culture, national origin, religion, disability, language, and socioeconomic status.

The Diversity Research Grant is expected to be used to support the completion of a pre-doctoral candidate’s dissertation work. The grant may be used to fund:

  1. supplies used to conduct the research;
  2. training needed for completion of the research; and/or
  3. travel to present the research (such as at a professional conference).

The applicant must be a member of Division 29.  The recipient of the grant will be expected to present his or her research results in a scholarly forum (e.g., presentation at an APA Annual Convention, the Division 29 journal, Psychotherapy, or other refereed professional journal), or Psychotherapy Bulletin.

Two annual grants of $2,000 will be paid in one lump sum to the researcher, to his or her university’s grants and contracts office, or to an incorporated company. Individuals who receive the funds could incur tax liabilities.  All grant recipients will be required to complete an IRS form W-9 before funds are issued.

A complete application must be submitted by email to both Diversity Domain Representatives:

Beverly Greene, Ph.D. (bgreene203@aol.com); Rosemary Phelps, Ph.D. (rephelps@uga.edu); and Astrea Greig, Psy.D. (agreig@bhchp.org) by midnight, April 1st.  Incomplete or late application packets will not be considered.

The application must include:

  • A 1-2 page cover letter describing how the applicant’s work embodies the Division’s interest in promoting diversity in the profession of psychotherapy and how the funding will be used to support the applicant’s dissertation work;
  • A 1-page document outlining a detailed budget;
  • A 5-10 page research proposal (alternatively, a Dissertation Proposal may be submitted, regardless of length);
  • 1 letter of recommendation from the applicant’s current direct supervisor or advisor; and
  • 1 letter from the applicant’s dissertation advisor or director of clinical training certifying that the applicant is currently in the process of completing research for the dissertation.

Once a complete application has been received (on or before the deadline), selections will be made using the following criteria:

  • Consistency with the Diversity Research Grant’s stated purposes;
  • Clarity of the written proposal;
  • Scientific quality and feasibility of the proposed research project;
  • Budgetary needs for data collection and completion and presentation of the project;
  • Potential for new and valuable contributions to the field of psychotherapy; and
  • Potential for final publication or likelihood of furthering successful research in topic area.

Additional Information

  • After the project is complete, a full accounting of the project’s income and expenses must be submitted within six months of completion.
  • Grant funds that are not spent on the project within two years must be returned.
  • When the resulting research is published, the grant must be acknowledged.
  • All individuals who directly receive funds from the division will be required to complete an IRS w-9 form prior to the release of funds, and will be sent a 1099 after the end of the fiscal year (December 31st).

Previous Recipients

2013 – J. Alexis Ortiz

2105 – Jay Bettergarcia