Dr. Oneeka Williams
Dr. Oneeka Williams, is a distinguished Urologic Surgeon and Assistant Clinical Professor of Urology at Tufts Medical School who has been breaking down barriers all her life. She is one of the first black women to graduate with a BA in Biophysics from Johns Hopkins University and is the first black female to train in Urologic Surgery at the Lahey Clinic. Dr. Williams is one of the 0.001% of black women who are urologic surgeons in the United States.
She has published a series of science-based children’s books featuring Dr. Dee Dee Dynamo – Super Surgeon on the Go, which have been embraced by children and educators across the country and various parts of the world. Ultimately, Dr. Williams envisions that all children will internalize the ‘Habits of Positivity’ modeled in the books, which builds towards a belief system that ‘Not Even the Sky is the Limit!’
Dr. Williams did her early education in Guyana and Barbados and credits her science teacher Mom and journalist Dad for her early love of science and writing. She completed her MD, MPH at Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health and general surgical training at Massachusetts General Hospital.
Dominic A.A. Randolph
Dominic A.A. Randolph is Riverdale’s sixth Head of School and a leader in the international character education movement. Randolph is a co-founder of the nonprofit educational research organization, Character Lab, along with Dave Levin ’88, founder of the KIPP charter schools, and Angela Duckworth, a psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania and author of the best-selling book, Grit. Randolph has been featured in World Class: Tackling the 10 Greatest Challenges in Schools Today edited by David James and Ian Warwick, How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character by Paul Tough and Most Likely to Succeed: Preparing Our Kids For The Innovation Era by Tony Wagner and Ted Dintersmith.
Randolph is a steering committee member of the International Positive Education Network, and a board member of the Mastery Transcript Consortium. Randolph is a member of the leadership team of nXU, an out-of-school program that helps highly promising NYC high school students explore, identify, and pursue their life purpose. Randolph has written on character and opportunity for the Brookings Institute.
Known as an innovator, Randolph, a Harvard graduate is the founder of Plussed+, a learning experience design studio based at Riverdale. Working with IDEO’s Design for Learning Studio, Plussed+
developed The Teachers Guild, a platform for creating and sharing new teaching strategies. Also with IDEO, Randolph collaborated on the Design-Thinking Toolkit for Educators, and The Purpose Project, a digital platform in beta testing designed to help students use design-thinking methods to prototype their purpose.
Prior to Randolph’s appointment in 2007, he served as assistant head master at The Lawrenceville School and worked in a variety of teaching and administrative roles in schools in Europe and the Middle East. At Riverdale, his work has focused on curriculum development, interdisciplinary studies and design thinking, and the implications of cognitive and technological advancements for learning, character development, and positive psychology.
John MacPhee is the Executive Director/CEO of The Jed Foundation (JED) a nonprofit organization that exists to protect emotional health and prevent suicide for our nation’s teens and young adults. They partner with high school and colleges to strengthen their mental health, substance abuse and suicide prevention programs and systems. They equip teens and young adults with the skills and knowledge to help themselves and each other. Passionate about supporting young adults in their transition to adulthood, John advises several organizations including the S. Jay Levy Fellowship for Future Leaders at City College, Trek Medics, Crisis Text Line, the Health Policy and Management Development at the Mailman School of Public Health, and HIV Hero.
Earlier in this career, he served in executive positions for Par Pharmaceutical, Inc. and Forest Laboratories, where he oversaw functions such as business development, alliance management, clinical development, regulatory affairs, sales and marketing. In 2016, John received The Allan Rosenfield Alumni Award for Excellence in the field of public health from the Joseph L. Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University. He earned a BA from Columbia College, an MBA from New York University and an MPH from Columbia University.
Laurie Santos, Ph.D.,
Psychologist Dr. Laurie Santos is an expert on human cognition, its origins, and the evolutionary biases that influence our all-too imperfect life choices. She is also knowledgeable in how behavioral change through positive psychology can lead to a happy and fulfilling life.
Currently the big project of Dr. Santos, is to positively influence the culture of Yale University by teaching happiness and well-being. She created a course so meaningful that it became the most popular class taken at Yale in over 316 years.
In her course, Psychology and the Good Life, Santos teaches her 1200 students about behavioral change through positive psychology. Dr. Santos wants her students to be more grateful, procrastinate less and increase social connections. She believes that those positive habits will decrease mental health issues on campus and create happier and more motivated students.
Her numerous awards for science, teaching, and mentorship include the Stanton Prize from the Society for Philosophy and Psychology for outstanding contributions to interdisciplinary research. She has been a featured TED speaker and has appeared on numerous television and radio shows. Her scientific work has appeared in Psychological Science, The New York Times, The Economist, Forbes, The New Yorker, The Los Angeles Times and more.
Anna Yusim, MD
Dr. Anna Yusim completed her undergraduate education at Stanford University, where she studied Biology & Philosophy. She attended Yale Medical School & the NYU Residency Training Program in Psychiatry. She has traveled, lived and worked in over 50 countries and presented at numerous national and international medical conferences. Dr. Yusim has published over 70 academic articles, book chapters, scientific abstracts and book reviews on various topics in psychiatry. She has a private practice in Manhattan and is presently a Lecturer at Yale Medical School, where she is working to create a Mental Health and Spirituality Program.
Dr. Yusim has received numerous awards and distinctions including the National Institute of Mental Health Outstanding Research Resident Award. She believes that every person is unique and the philosophy of Dr. Yusim’s practice is to help individuals achieve their highest level of psychological, emotional & mental well-being. She does this by enabling patients to cultivate their inherent strengths and gain insight into their challenges. She is the author of Fulfilled, How the Science of Spirituality Can Help You Live a happier, More Meaningful Life.
John MacPhee the Executive Director/CEO of The Jed Foundation (JED) a nonprofit organization that exists to protect emotional health and prevent suicide for our nation’s teens and young adults will moderate a conversation with 5 of our young adults and teens.
Dr. Anna Yusim, Psychiatrist and author of Fulfilled, How the Science of Spirituality Can Help You Live a happier, More Meaningful Life, will moderate a conversation with 5 parents.
Fun activities and ideas to build your happiness skills. Things you can you do to help yourself and others feel happier.
“Students want to change, to be happier themselves, and to change the culture here on campus.” – Dr. Laurie Santos
Remembering the Future: The Path to Recovering Intuition
SELF 101 - The Path To Happiness
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