Varda Shoham Clinical Science Scholarship Fund
Varda Shoham was a force in the world of clinical psychological science. She served as President of the Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology and the Academy of Psychological Clinical Science, an organization of the 50 leading science-oriented doctoral programs and internships in clinical psychology in the US and Canada. And as the Academy's President, she hosted meetings -- including some at her kitchen table -- to develop a new accreditation system for the training of clinical scientists that, while still in its infancy, has already gained recognition from national bodies and attracted many of the best research-based clinical psychology programs. A monograph co-authored by Varda for the APS Journal Psychological Science in the Public Interest laid out the rationale and design for the new system. It immediately became the focus of national press stories and columns in the Washington Post, New York Times, Newsweek, LA Times, Nature, Wall Street Journal, and other media outlets. The monograph has since become one of the most cited in the history of that journal.
Varda also made major research contributions to the science of clinical psychology, whether in her role as a longtime National Institute of Drug Abuse-supported investigator, including as a part of NIDA's Clinical Trials Network, or her longtime interest and research on couple and family approaches to health and behavior change conducted with her close collaborator and husband, Michael Rohrbaugh.
In the past few years, Varda became a policy leader at the National Institute of Mental Health, working on broad issues of behavior change and making behavioral intervention development for mental disorders more precise by incorporating concepts like target engagement, target validation, and mechanisms of action.
Varda was a member of the APS Board of Directors at the time she passed away, leaving APS and the entire psychological science community without one of its leading voices. Varda's husband and family have established the Varda Shoham Clinical Science Scholarship Fund in her memory.