My name is Beatriz MacDonald and I was born and raised in Guatemala. I am fluent in Spanish and English, and proficient in Italian. I earned my Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Harvard University in 2006. In 2014, I graduated with a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at the University of Denver, under the mentorship of Dr. Bruce Pennington. My academic emphasis was in neuropsychology, multicultural awareness, and statistics and my dissertation compared the reading development of children across socioeconomic status in the United States. I completed my internship in clinical psychology/pediatric neuropsychology at the University of New Mexico, where I am currently completing my Postdoctoral Fellowship in Pediatric Neuropsychology.
In Guatemala, Boston, Denver and now Albuquerque, I have been fortunate to work with Spanish speaking, bilingual, and Native American families. This work has allowed me to focus both my clinical and research interests on how to better understand the impact that different factors (e.g., socioeconomic status, language, and culture) have on neurodevelopment and how it informs culturally-competent neuropsychological clinical practice. I am keenly aware of the lack of training opportunities to foster culturally-competent neuropsychological services. As a student representative of the Hispanic Neuropsychology Society, I will continue this conversation with other students and extend this discussion to help identify specific training components that can increase culturally-competent neuropsychological services. As future providers, it is our responsibility to advance multiculturalism within our field so that we can better steer the trajectory of research and evaluations, and the development of assessment tools.