Senior Associate Dean for Medical Education Christa Zehle, M.D., and Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Margaret Tandoh, M.D., have announced the appointment of Marissa N. Coleman, Psy.D., as a wellbeing advisor at the College. In this role, Coleman is available to Larner medical and graduate students for large group presentations and small group or individual discussions on wellbeing. She is available specifically for members of the BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) community, and for consultations with individual students.
“The appointment of Dr. Coleman is in direct response to student feedback about the diverse needs of our students," Zehle said. "Dr. Tandoh and I are excited to collaboratively expand our team and provide needed resources to support Larner medical and graduate students during these uncertain and challenging times as we navigate a pandemic that has exposed associated health and financial inequities and our long history of systemic racism. We are committed to providing a supportive, equitable and inclusive environment for all members of our student community."
Coleman is a licensed clinical psychologist and lead staff psychologist and equity, diversity, and inclusion advisor at the University of Vermont Medical Center, where she has practiced since 2018. Coleman serves as a co-advisor, along with Tandoh, for the Larner College of Medicine Student National Medical Association student interest group. She has held previous positions at the University of Vermont Counseling and Psychiatry Services, and Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, in Georgia. She is also the co-founder of an international mental health consulting firm and continues to see patients in private practice.
Coleman received her B.A. in psychology from DePaul University before earning her Master of Arts and Doctor of Psychology degrees from The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. She completed predoctoral work at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, The Chicago Children’s Advocacy Center, and Miami Children’s Hospital in Florida, and was a postdoctoral fellow in psychology at Emory University School of Medicine. She is an American Academy of Psychotherapists Scholarship recipient and an International Affairs Research Fellow at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology. Coleman has published research in a number of journals, including the Journal of Family Violence and the Journal of Pan-African Studies, and is a contributor to the Guilford Press Handbook of Depression.
“Providing culturally humble support is central to my identity as a clinical psychologist,” said Coleman. “I am pleased to be able to collaborate with Larner College of Medicine faculty, staff, and students. I look forward to contributing to the equity initiatives within the College and am thrilled to do my part in enhancing the sense of belonging for traditionally underrepresented communities in medicine.”