Dear RAMS Community,
It is with heavy hearts that RAMS must say goodbye to Dr. Alla Volovich, who abruptly passed away on July 8, 2021 while vacationing in Mexico. With her generosity, passion, and wit, she leaves behind a legacy of unwavering commitment to teaching and mentoring generations of professionals in the field of psychology. She led tirelessly and humbly by example, inspiring those under her wing to develop the kind of cultural, intellectual, and empathic sophistication and sensitivity that she modeled.
Dr. Volovich started at RAMS as a staff psychologist in 1994 and, in 2000, became the Director of Training for the RAMS Clinical Training Programs, which includes the National Asian American Psychology Training Center (NAAPTC), a nationally recognized, APA-accredited, and award-winning program. NAAPTC is among very few long-standing APA-accredited Doctoral Training Programs housed in a non-profit, community-based organization serving difficult to reach and disfranchised populations from various cultural backgrounds. Over the past two decades, under Dr. Volovich’s leadership and consistently attentive guidance, the Training Program continuously fostered the well-earned reputation for the profoundly meaningful and, for many, life-transforming experiences. Keenly perceptive, attuned, and thoughtful, she created the conditions necessary for interns and trainees to discover parts of themselves that would help shape their development. Over the years, Dr. Volovich worked tirelessly with each trainee and intern as unique individuals.
In keeping with NAAPTC’s history and mission as the country’s first program to develop expertise in working with Asian and Pacific Islander and Russian-speaking populations, Dr. Volovich focused the training program on applying the psychodynamic approach to the treatment of culturally diverse populations. She understood well that one cannot treat the cultural Other without understanding oneself as a cultural being. Her life-long project was to help those she trained to decipher their own cultural makeup and the way it comes into play in the treatment room. Through this deeply reflective process, trainees and interns have gained deep insights into each other’s’ and their own history and culture. Training Program graduates have integrated and carried what they learned from her to their work as clinicians, non-profit leaders, writers, policy makers, professors, leading consultants, and other contributors to the mental health field. Many graduates have also joined the RAMS family as committed clinicians, supervisors, and leaders while others returned as training facilitators. These lasting relationships attest to the welcoming and collaborative environment that Dr. Volovich so adroitly created.
As she was fiercely bright, enthusiastic, creative, and compassionate, Dr. Volovich’s passing is a tremendous loss to RAMS and the hundreds of lives she touched.
All donations made through this GoFundMe will be for the RAMS clinical training program.