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Waterloo Lutheran Seminary is pleased to announce that Kate Harper, assistant professor of spiritual care and psychotherapy, has received the Society for Pastoral Care and Counselling’s Dissertation Award.

Harper successfully defended her dissertation in April, without revisions, for a PhD in Psychology at York University in Toronto.

Her dissertation — Psychoanalysis as an Interdisciplinary Science: From 19th Century Neuropsychology to Modern Neuropsychoanalysis — in part explores the integration of the knowledge of the brain (objective neuroscience) with psychoanalysis (the subjective understanding of the human condition) and argues the benefits of using them together to enhance psychotherapy treatment and keep the lived experience at the forefront of brain-based research. The abstract is available at http://bit.ly/2qONV64.

The Society for Pastoral Care and Counselling (SPCR) Dissertation Award is given to a person who has been nominated by his or her peers, says Patricia Berendsen, the SPCR’s president.

“The SPCR executive viewed her dissertation as an important contribution to the field of pastoral counselling and spiritual care and psychotherapy,” Berendsen says. “We’re delighted to present this ward to Kate Harper.”

Kristine Lund, the seminary’s assistant principal and director of spiritual care and psychotherapy programs, says that the SPCR’s award for Harper is well deserved.

“We’re thrilled that Kate’s work is being honoured in this way,” Lund says.

Thanking the SPCR award committee, Harper says the news came a surprise.

“I am so very flattered that my work was selected,” says Harper, who has been a seminary faculty member since 2015. “However, it would not have been possible without the support of my committee and supervisor, Dr. Raymond Fancher of York University, and everyone at Waterloo Lutheran Seminary.”

The dissertation award was presented to Harper during a luncheon May 14 at the SPCR’s annual conference on Laurier’s Waterloo campus.

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