Psychology alum celebrated for helping children find their courage

Armando Pina
Photo courtesy Arizona State University

The American Psychological Association (APA) recently recognized FIU alumnus Armando Pina with the Dalmas A. Taylor Distinguished Contributions Award.

The award recognizes alumni of APA’s Minority Fellowship Program (MFP) who have made exceptional contributions to racial and ethnic psychology in the areas of research, public service, teaching and training, or innovations in treatment. Pina who conducts research on child anxiety as well as children’s courage is bringing awareness to critical issues in Latine mental health and illness. Receiving this mid-career award, especially in times of a global health crisis, feels like a big responsibility for Pina. He says the work of the award’s namesake serves as a guiding light and inspiration for him.

“Dalmas [Taylor] made important contributions in the areas of group conflict, race and equity, and mental health among people of color,” Pina said. “He advocated for affirmative opportunities for people of color and was a valuable voice across a variety of agencies and institutions, including but not limited to the U.S. government, the Police Foundation, public school systems, universities, industry and religious organizations.”

Pina, who received his M.S. in Applied Developmental Science and Mental Health and Ph.D. in Psychology from FIU, was inducted as an MFP fellow during his psychology doctoral training nearly two decades ago. He is the only FIU APA MFP fellow to receive both an early career award and mid-career award in recognition for his contributions to research to promote and improve the well-being of people of color in the U.S.  

The FIU alumnus and now associate professor at Arizona State University has received several federal, state and private grants. He has expertise in developing and evaluating psychosocial interventions to reduce and prevent anxiety and related disorders in pediatric populations. Pina has published scientific articles and book chapters, including works relevant to risk, resilience, prevention and treatments for Latine youth. He is associate editor of the Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, the flagship journal for Division 53 (Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology) of APA. He is also on the editorial board of eight other scientific journals.