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USC wins workplace best practices award

The American Psychological Association has selected USC as one of only four organizations, nationwide, to receive “National Award Winner” for a program that meets the unique needs of employees. USC’s Center for Work and Family Life was named as a model employee program, and the university is being recognized for its vision and leadership in developing the Center, whose mission includes fostering a psychologically and socially healthy workforce and culture.

Psychologically Health Workplace Awards Magazine 2014

Read more about the Award, and the impact that a psychologically healthy workplace has upon the productivity, health and culture of an organization.

USC is honored on page 16 of the magazine, below.

Click on image to open

PHW magazine

March 8, 2014, Washington D.C.

Receives Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award from American Psychological Association

Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award

In recognition of its efforts to create a healthy, high-performing work environment, the University of Southern California (USC) received the American Psychological Association's (APA) 2014 Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award (PHWA) at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. on March 8.

One of four employers from across North America to receive the award this year, the university won in the government/military/educational institution category. The school is a previous winner of the California Psychological Association's state-level Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award in 2012, qualifying it to be nominated for the APA award.The University was also one of nine organizations to receive the Best Practices Honoree recognition in 2013.

USC excelled in its efforts to foster employee involvement, health and safety, employee growth and development, work-life balance and employee recognition. The school's comprehensive wellness efforts, Center for Work and Family Life and culture of acknowledgment are several examples of the workplace practices that helped earn a 2014 award. USC's psychologically healthy workplace practices have reaped rewards for both the organization and its employees. These include positive impacts on productivity, absenteeism, morale, recruitment success and turnover. In 2010, USC became the first university in the world to earn an International Safe Community designation from the World Health Organization in recognition of its work in educating its population on what to do in a natural disaster, how to be safe in an urban environment and how to stay mentally and physically healthy.

"This award not only recognizes our good work in supporting the health and well-being of our faculty and staff, but serves as an important focal point for ensuring the continued integration of business imperatives with humane business practices"
-John Gaspari, Executive Director of CWFL

Founded in 1980, The USC Center for Work and Family Life (CWFL) is the hub for integrated services designed to help faculty, staff and their families manage work-life issues. CWFL's top priority is the healthy balance between personal and professional lives from pre-employment through retirement. CWFL's core services include brief, fully confidential, solution-focused counseling for a wide range of personal and work-related concerns, consultative support for faculty, managers and departments, referrals for dependent care, workshops on stress management and other diverse programs and services to help employees find and preserve a healthy work-life balance.

"Forward-thinking employers such as the University of Southern California are going beyond the typical wellness program to focus on a broader view of well-being," says David W. Ballard, PsyD, MBA, head of APA's Center for Organizational Excellence. "When an employer is truly committed to helping employees thrive, psychologically healthy workplace principles become ingrained in the very norms, values and beliefs that are part of the organization's culture. In turn, this helps employees perform at their best, on and off the job."


APA's Psychologically Healthy Workplace Awards are designed to showcase the very best from among the award winners recognized by APA's affiliated state, provincial and territorial psychological associations. Nominees are evaluated on their workplace practices in the areas of employee involvement, health and safety, employee growth and development, work-life balance and employee recognition. Awards are given to for-profit and not-for-profit organizations as well as government, military and educational institutions.

John Gaspari receives National Award from
CEO of APA Norman B. Anderson, PhD

John was joined at the awards ceremony by CWFL Assistant Director Linda Snouffer, LCSW, and adminstrative assistant Susan Ritchey, each of whom made remarkable contributions towards collecting data, compiling documentation, and writing the grants for the state award in 2012 and the national awards in 2013 and 2014.

Proud representatives from USC:
Susan Ritchey, John Gaspari and Linda Snouffer

External Resources

Read the overview of USC services at the APA site by following this link

Watch the USC video compilation here

More information about APA's Psychologically Healthy Workplace Award winners and Best Practices honorees is available at Organizations interested in learning more about creating a psychologically healthy workplace or applying for an award in their state, province or territory can visit

The Psychologically Healthy Workplace program is a public education initiative from APA’s Center for Organizational Excellence.

The American Psychological Association, in Washington, D.C., is the largest scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States and is the world's largest association of psychologists. APA's membership includes more than 137,000 researchers, educators, clinicians, consultants and students. Through its divisions in 54 subfields of psychology and affiliations with 60 state, territorial and Canadian provincial associations, APA works to advance the creation, communication and application of psychological knowledge to benefit society and improve people's lives.