Michigan School of Professional Psychology

Michigan School of Professional Psychology (MiSPP) is an independent graduate school located in Farmington Hills, Michigan. The Master of Arts in clinical psychology is offered in a one year full-time, or a two to three year part-time format. The Doctor of Clinical Psychology degree is a full-time, minimum four-year, post-masters program.



The mission of the Michigan School of Professional Psychology (MiSPP) is to educate and train individuals to become reflective practitioner-scholars with the competencies necessary to serve diverse populations as professional psychologists and psychotherapists.


The Michigan School of Professional Psychology (MiSPP) is a unique school that emphasizes personal growth, authenticity and creativity as integral parts of the academic process.

MiSPP offers an educational climate that values personal choice, self-determination, and free-will, important components of human potential addressed by the humanistic model of psychotherapy. Maintaining its emphasis on a small interactive learning environment, MiSPP recognizes individualized attention for each student as a priority. MiSPP encourages personally relevant clinical research and cultivates purposeful connections through social action and outreach efforts. MiSPP strives to create a diverse community of teaching and learning and a sense of community that is foundational to enhancing cooperative and collaborative relationships.

While preserving its legacy of humanistic and existential roots, MiSPP integrates contemporary theories and practices to promote quality education of competent practitioner-scholars. MiSPP searches for opportunities to contribute to the well-being of individuals and society through its leadership in humanistic and clinical psychology and the advancement of qualitative research.


The vision of the Michigan School of Professional Psychology is to be an international leader in graduate education, to embody the core tenets of humanistic-existential theory, research and practice, and to prepare students for diverse careers in psychology.


The Michigan School of Professional Psychology is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North [1]. It is also approved by the State of Michigan Board of Education to grant graduate degrees in clinical psychology and is an associate member of the National Council of Schools and Programs of Professional Psychology [2].


Housed on a wooded, four-acre campus in Farmington Hills, Michigan, MiSPP was created specifically to generate a learning climate that reflects the school's mission and its emphasis on growth and potential. The carefully designed facilities offer open and welcoming surroundings that foster intimate, collaborative education. The campus includes the Moustakas Johnson Library, Wilkinson Research Center, Joan S. Snyder Clinical Lab, a spacious atrium for gathering, and many spaces for reflection, such as the Diane Sklar Blau Sculpture Garden.


MA students enter the program with academic preparation in psychology - many also have related work experience. PsyD students enter the program with a graduate degree and have a background of study in psychology or related field. MiSPP graduate students seek to become practicing clinicians committed to the humanistic principles and values of psychology.

Student Profile

Students for Fall 2010:

  • 53 MA students
  • 85 PsyD students
  • 78% Women
  • 22% Men
  • 1% International students
  • 25% Students of color

The Faculty

The faculty at MiSPP are committed to professional practice and their role as instructors. Most faculty maintain private practices and other professional activities that serve to enhance the classroom experience. All faculty hold doctoral degrees. With a commitment to scholarship, faculty are engaged in professional organizations, conduct research, publish in psychological journals and books, present seminars and trainings, and contribute to the growth and mentoring of individuals entering the profession.

Areas of faculty expertise include:

  • humanistic psychology
  • existential philosophy
  • experimental modes of teaching
  • mindfulness practices
  • multicultural psychology
  • psychodynamic psychotherapy
  • psychological assessment and psychometrics
  • quantitative and qualitative research methodologies
  • psychoanalytic psychotherapy
  • psychology and law
  • forensic psychology
  • women's issues

Historical Timeline

1949 Dr. Clark Moustakas joins the faculty at the Merrill-Palmer Institute (MPI) in Detroit, Mich.

1953 First book by Moustakas Children in Play Therapy, emphasizes the relationship as central in effective therapy.

1956 Publication of The Self is the impetus for the original dialogues between Abraham Maslow, Carl Rogers, Clark Moustakas and others, forging the Humanistic Psychology movement. Meetings were held at 40 E. Ferry Ave. in Detroit, later to become the first home of the Center for Humanistic Studies (CHS).

1961 Loneliness by Moustakas is released, to public acclaim. Book becomes the basis of heuristic research.

1962 Moustakas participates in the formation of the American Association of Humanistic Psychology and the creation of the Journal of Humanistic Psychology.

1970-1971 Enhancing Human Potential (EHP) Certification is established by Clark Moustakas and Cereta Perry.

1978 The first degree program, MA in Humanistic and Clinical Psychology, is launched at MPI.

1979 MPI announces it will close due to bankruptcy.

1980-1981 Clark Moustakas, Cereta Perry, Diane Blau and Bruce Douglass commit to keep the psychology programs alive. The Center for Humanistic Studies (CHS) establishes its independence from the Merrill-Palmer Institute. CHS is awarded the degree-granting charter of MPI.

1981-1982 With the aid of dedicated students, CHS moves into 40 E. Ferry Ave. in Detroit. Candidacy for accreditation with the North Central Association (NCA) is granted. EHP Certification evolves into a Specialist Degree (PsyS) and graduates its first class.

1984 Full accreditation is received from NCA.

1989 Moustakas is instrumental in starting the Consortium of Diversified Psychology Programs (CDPP). He advocates nationally and internationally for licensing of CHS and other students of alternative programs of education and training.

1990-1994 Publication of Heuristic Research: Design, Methodology and Applications and Phenomenological Research Methods impact the field of qualitative research.

1997 Relationship Play Therapy is printed and marks 50 years of theory and application in child therapy.

1998 President-elect, Dr. Kerry Moustakas becomes CHS President.

2000 The Higher Learning Commission/North Central Association of Colleges and Schools extends CHS accreditation for a Doctoral Program (PsyD) in Humanistic and Clinical Psychology.

2001-2003 Land is purchased and a new campus is built in Farmington Hills, Mich.

2004 Clark and Kerry Moustakas publish Loneliness, Creativity and Love: Awakening Meanings in Life.

2005 The Moustakas Johnson Library Dedication is held which includes the naming of the Wilkinson Research Center and the Joan S. Snyder Clinical Lab.

2006 CHS celebrates its rich history on its 25th Anniversary and the dedication of its new name: Michigan School of Professional Psychology (MiSPP).

2006 President’s Circle established for lead donors. Members of the President’s Circle join the President at the first annual reception to honor lead donors and highlight student scholarship recipients.

MiSPP receives re-accreditation from North Central Association: next visit required in 2016-2017

2007 1st Annual MiSPP and Council for Asian Pacific Americans Partnership Event

MiSPP receives 1st grant from the Max M and Marjorie S. Fisher Support Foundation

A co-sponsor of the 1st Annual APA – Division 32 National Conference: “Humanistic Psychotherapies for the 21st Century,” San Francisco, CA

2008 10 Year Anniversary of Kerry Moustakas Presidency

2010 Clark Moustakas receives Award for Distinguished Lifetime Contributions in Humanistic Psychology from the Society of Humanistic psychology – Division 32 at the 118th APA Conference in San Diego, CA

First Honorary Doctorate Degree awarded to State Senator Gilda Z. Jacobs for her contribution to Professional Psychology in Michigan

MiSPP mourns the death of Professor Emerita and Co-Founder, Cereta E. Perry. The Cereta Perry Alumni Scholarship was created in her memory.

See also

External links

Coordinates: 42°29′29″N 83°21′34″W / 42.491482°N 83.359344°W / 42.491482; -83.359344



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