Alan Pope, Ph.D.
Phone: 678-839-0601 | Fax: 678-839-0611
Office: Melson Hall 103
I pursued many intellectual avenues before discovering my heart in humanistic and Buddhist psychology. Despite developing a love for existential literature in high school, I began college with the overly serious intention of becoming an astrophysicist, a notion subverted by my first encounter with philosophy. Bowing to the dim prospect of finding work as a philosopher, I graduated with a B.A. in Economics from the University of Texas at Austin, and later an M.S. in Computer Science at the University of Delaware. I stayed at Delaware for some years implementing a natural language interface for an expert system and working on an ambitious dissertation in natural language understanding. All of this, and more, would be derailed in 1989 by a physical, emotional, and spiritual crisis which brought into question every single aspect of my life. In the course of my "recovery" (or discovery) I encountered Buddhist thought, recognized it, and became a practitioner in the Tibetan (Nyingmapa) tradition under the guidance of my current spiritual teachers in New York. I discontinued my studies in computer science to enroll at Duquesne University, obtaining my M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in clinical existential-phenomenological psychology. During this period I underwent three years of Jungian training analysis, which extended my intellectual and personal knowledge of psychology in new and powerful directions. My doctoral dissertation research used empirical phenomenological methods to examine the transformative impact of midlife parental loss. Following completion of my formal studies in psychology, I spent five months in Nepal and India studying and practicing Tibetan Buddhism before coming to West Georgia. Generally speaking, my interests in psychology revolve around issues of personal transformation, particularly as elucidated by Buddhist, existential-phenomenological, Jungian, archetypal, and transpersonal psychologies.