Dan Han, Psy.D. '08 Doctor of Psychology in in Clinical Psychology (Psy.D.)

Read about Dan Han, Psy.D. '08, 
Chief of Neuropsychology Service.

Read about Dan Han, Psy.D. '08,
Chief of Neuropsychology Service.

Dan Han, Psy.D. ’08, graduated from Adler University in 2008 with a Doctor of Psychology, Clinical Psychology degree. He is currently the Chief of Neuropsychology Service, Clinical Section at the University of Kentucky Medical Center.

Tell us about your work. What do you do? What are the goals and purpose of your organization or practice?
Dan: I work as the Chief of Neuropsychology Service, Clinical Section at the University of Kentucky Medical Center, and Associate Professor of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation at the University Of Kentucky College Of Medicine. I served as the president of the Lexington board of directors for the Brain Injury Alliance of Kentucky/US Brain Injury Alliance, and serve as the founding member of the International Society of Neurogastronomy, founding member of the Scientific and Medical Advisory Board for Bill McMillan-Bluegrass Chapter of the Association of the United States Army, and on the council of the Kentucky Stroke Care Network, Epilepsy Research Center, and the Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Center.

In my work, I primarily work with those with severe neurologic and neuropsychiatric disorders, often a part of marginalized population from rural Appalachia. The goal of my practice is to provide evidence based services to the very sick, those who traditionally had limited to no access to advanced care.

What is your impact on the individuals or communities with whom you work?
Dan: I serve the citizens of the commonwealth of Kentucky including rural Appalachian regions where access to quality healthcare traditionally has been scarce. At the University of Kentucky Medical Center, we diligently work on providing access to quality healthcare to those who had limited access prior.

How did your Adler University experience affect where you are today?
Dan:
As an undergrad, I was highly influenced by Liberation Theology’s mission of service to the sick, the poor and the marginalized. Naturally, I gravitated towards the Adlerian concept of Gemeinschaftsgefuhl, which led me to pursue clinical training in Adlerian Psychology. With this foundation, coupled with my love for clinical neurosciences, I found a marriage in providing neuropsychology services in the department of neurology at the University of Kentucky where the entire commonwealth is served. I also practice through the department of neurosurgery and the department of physical medicine & rehabilitation, for a continuum of care for patients with acute brain injury and chronic brain disease.

Was there a particular Adler faculty member or experience as a student that has most influenced you, and why?
Dan:
Drs. Jerry Westermeyer and Dan Barnes, as well as Hideko Sera and Larry Maucieri were very influential in my career development. Dr. Westermeyer continuously mentored in me the importance of evidence based approaches and responsible use of clinical data. Dr. Barnes and Dr. Sera mentored me to really engage patients/clients where they are, and Dr. Maucieri was instrumental in my career development planning. They were also all genuinely interested in my development as a clinician, scholar, and a scientist. I’m grateful for their mentorship over the years and continue to keep in touch.

What career accomplishment have you found most fulfilling, or considered your greatest professional accomplishment?
Dan:
Presidency of the Lexington board of the Brain Injury Alliance, and being the founding member of the International Society of Neurogastronomy. With the former, we serve those affected by brain injury through advocacy, education, prevention, service and support. The alliance links survivors of brain injury and their families to support from others with similar experience; provides them with education and information about living and coping with brain injury; assists them in locating resources for financial assistance; and seeks to connect people with sources of psychological support.

The International Society of Neurogastronomy is a professional organization for culinary professionals, agriculture professionals, food technologists, and scientists of gastronomy in the context of brain and behavior. My contribution includes utilizing brain-behavior relationships to address quality of life issues involving food and nutrition intake in chronically ill populations.

What is the single most important piece of career advice you can give someone in your field?
Dan:
Invest your efforts wisely. Assess the investment to yield ratio. Once a good investment has been identified, be aggressive in your efforts. At that point, don’t be afraid to fail, and take advantage of all opportunities that come your way. Follow through. Then, stay grateful. Good things will naturally follow.

What advice can you give a student just joining Adler?
Dan:
Balance your life tasks! Remember that the work task is only a third of the equation. At the end of the day, your entire career identity is just about a job. Your holistic psychological self is more than that. Pursue training because you enjoy the process, not just because of an end goal.