Chaminade University of Honolulu recently received nearly $480,000 from the Clarence T.C. Ching Foundation to provide scholarships to students of the Chaminade Psy.D. program, formerly housed at Argosy University.
When Argosy closed its doors mid-semester in March 2019, Chaminade was quick to act. Within weeks, the university acquired the Hawaii School of Professional Psychology (HSPP) doctor of psychology program and hired all of the full-time Psy.D. staff and faculty members.
Chaminade was determined to provide the students with a seamless transition and allow them to continue their spring classes. The Clarence T.C. Ching Foundation gift provided student scholarships for Psy.D. students to help with spring semester tuition at Chaminade, as they had already paid their spring semester tuition to Argosy.
“We are incredibly grateful to the Clarence T.C. Ching Foundation,” says Dr. Sean Scanlan, director of the Psy.D. program at Chaminade University of Honolulu. “This generous gift helped ease the financial burden on students who had already experienced a tumultuous first part of the year when Argosy University suddenly closed.”
The five-year doctor of clinical psychology program is the only program of its kind in Hawaii. Last year, students volunteered over 12,000 hours of direct services through clinical practicums to people in the community. The program’s closure would have meant that there would be no accredited Psy.D. program within 2,400 miles of Hawaii, severely impacting Hawaii’s mental health services. The move to acquire the program by Chaminade—and the support of the Clarence T.C. Ching Foundation—eliminated this potential crisis and allowed students to continue providing care to their patients.
“This program fulfills such an important need in our community,” says Tertia Freas, executive director for the Clarence T.C. Ching Foundation. “It is our honor to support these incredible students in their journey to bring much-needed mental health services to Hawaii.”
Chaminade received permission from both accrediting bodies—the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) and the American Psychological Association (APA)—to provide a teach-out, ensuring enrolled students can complete their degrees. The university recently received approval for the program from WSCUC, allowing Chaminade to continue the program into the future.
“We are excited to bring the Psy.D. program to Chaminade. It is a perfect fit for the academic programs we already provide and consistent with our mission to provide service to the community,” says Dr. Lynn Babington, president of Chaminade University of Honolulu. “Over the past 30 years, HSPP, as the only clinical psychology program in the state, has educated and trained hundreds of psychologists who have provided countless mental health services to Hawaii.”