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Alumni Spotlight August 2015

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Ken Robey

Ken Robey '81

BA - Psychology 
Fulton School of Liberal Arts

MAJOR FIELD OF STUDY: Psychology

CURRENT EMPLOYER: Matheny Medical and Educational Center

CURRENT OCCUPATION: Research Institute Director

DESCRIBE YOUR CAREER PATH:
After SU (back then it was SSC), I pursued my Ph.D. in social psychology at Rutgers University. From there, I spent a couple years as Director of Testing at a community college in New Jersey before I became Vice President for Research and Evaluation at a large residential mental health provider. After 5 years there, I decided to move into the developmental disability field and became Director of the Matheny Institute for Research in Developmental Disabilities where I've been for 21 years. Aside from doing research on psychological aspects of disability at Matheny, I'm Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Rutgers - New Jersey Medical School, and I've taught graduate and undergraduate courses here and there in New Jersey colleges and universities. Recognizing that people with disabilities often have difficulty finding appropriate and effective health care, a colleague and I convened a group of medical school faculty, nursing school faculty, and others around the country interested in teaching health care students about disability. That group has evolved into a national nonprofit called the "Alliance for Disability in Health Care Education, Inc.". I was honored to be the first President of that organization, and I continue on the Board of Trustees. The most recent career development for me was a Fulbright award that allowed me to lecture and do disability-related curriculum development work at the University of East Anglia in the U.K. in April of this year. The best part is that I got to work with Dr. Tom Shakespeare, an icon in the sociology of disability, and with his incredible colleagues at UEA.

               
MOST IMPORTANT THING YOU LEARNED WHILE ATTENDING SALISBURY UNIVERSITY:
I learned that a little initiative can be an incredible investment. Some of the relatively little things accomplished early in life can be tickets to much bigger things later on

WHAT CAMPUS ACTIVITIES/ORGANIZATIONS WERE YOU INVOLVED WITH?
Psi Chi; Omicron Delta Kappa; Alpha Phi Omega; and I was student coordinator for the Genesis Helpline, the student-run crisis counseling hotline.

BEST COLLEGE MEMORY:
Sitting in the RA's apartment in Wicomico Hall with good friends listening to some of the best (and worst) music available.

WHY DID YOU CHOOSE SALISBURY UNIVERSITY?
Among the Maryland state schools, I found Salisbury by far the most appealing. The reputation, the opportunities, the campus, the town, the proximity to O.C.

IF YOU COULD DESCRIBE SALISBURY UNIVERSITY IN THREE WORDS, WHAT WOULD THEY BE AND WHY?
"Where I started." In almost every respect, Salisbury is where I started. My adult social life; my career path (thank you, Dr. Whitehead); my interests . . . I think I grew into "personhood" there. 

FAVORITE VACATION SPOT AND WHY?
For our 30th anniversary, my wife and I spent time in Europe. AMAZING! I envy the Europeans their sense of history and culture.

GREATEST ACCOMPLISHMENT:
Personally: I hooked an amazing wife with whom I raised two amazing sons. That's a pretty big accomplishment. Professionally: a Fulbright award.

WHAT IS SOMETHING PEOPLE DON'T KNOW ABOUT YOU?
While working at BK one summer, I was timed to make the fastest Whopper in our district, probably the state!

HOBBIES/OTHER INTERESTS:
(1) Roasting, sampling, and blending coffees from around the world; (2) Shaking, quivering, and twitching because I roast, sample, and blend coffees from around the world.

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