ccording to many, the change of leadership in the U.S. government has given the perception that there will be greater openness to diversity. This in itself is a promising scene, particularly for those trying to see it as indicative of a shift toward public policy teams who represent diversity within the U.S. community. Something similar has been happening in other states, though on a different scale and on other sides of the political spectrum. In Florida, Governor Ron DeSantis has fought legal battles in his bid to appoint a Jamaican-born judge to the state’s highest court. He has appointed eight Black judges to lower courts. He has also appointed professionals who understand the importance of recognizing and being able to work with human beings from diverse backgrounds and circumstances. Among those professionals is Dr. Madiley Broz, a graduate of Albizu University appointed to the Florida Board of Psychology.
Dr. Broz is a clinical neuropsychologist on the faculty of Memorial Healthcare System in Hollywood, Florida. She is a member of and spokesperson for the Alzheimer’s Association and has also been a speaker for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the Parkinson’s Foundation, and the Epilepsy Foundation. She holds masters and doctoral degrees from Albizu University in Miami.
“Understanding and celebrating differences is part of the high standard of care and empathy we must provide, with the respect and dignity we deserve as human beings regardless of race, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, or political views,” Dr. Broz said of her performance and what can be expected from her appointment.
The appointment makes Dr. Broz part of the body responsible for licensing, monitoring, disciplining, and educating psychologists to ensure that they are competent and qualified to practice in the State of Florida. The Florida Board of Psychology was established by law to ensure that all applicants who wish to practice psychology in the jurisdiction meet the preparation requirements to protect and serve the community.
“I live in gratitude to my clinic supervisors, who helped forge the human being and health professional that I am and, of course, to my alma mater, Albizu University, which is a magnificent platform for achieving the impossible.”
Helping to get new professionals on track is part of the valuable work that Dr. Broz has been doing at Memorial Neuroscience Institute. “We have a collaboration agreement with Albizu University through which we offer a platform for students in the internship stage to complete their doctoral degrees. It is with great pleasure that I welcome students from Albizu University every year because I know from experience that they come well prepared and eager to help. I have been particularly impressed by their level of professionalism and independence regarding clinical judgment. Through rotation at the institute, we offer services to patients with neurological or neurosurgical conditions, including consultation in neuropsychology, psychotherapy, evaluations, and behavioral health interventions. The problems we most often see in these patients are cognitive dysfunctions associated with medical conditions, which are frequently seen when there are comorbid mental disorders. These can be depression, anxiety, problems coping with adverse situations, as well as somatization and trauma.”
Albizu University’s curriculum, institutional culture, and community cultivate the openness and inclusion of students and professionals from different cultural, social, ethnic, and religious backgrounds. In the words of Dr. Broz, “I live in gratitude to my clinic supervisors, who helped forge the human being and health professional that I am and, of course, to my alma mater, Albizu University, which is a magnificent platform for achieving the impossible. In addition to an excellent curriculum, the early exposure to a widely diverse population is unique to Albizu, and it truly prepares new professionals to provide care with an exceptional cultural sensitivity that makes a big difference when you’re practicing in the real world.”
“I want to expand our horizons and advocate for programs that support the needs of our patients and the community”
Now, Dr. Broz will have the opportunity and responsibility to help ensure that professionals aspiring to serve in Florida have the preparation, sensitivity, and desire that she cultivated and has seen in the practitioners who come through her clinic to transform lives. Her appointment, along with those of three other nominees to said board, is pending approval until the Florida State Senate begins its next legislative session.
“I look forward to continuing doing everything in my power to protect, promote, and improve the health of the people of Florida. The Board of Psychology plays a leading role in the changing health care environment in which we live. The world needs mental health professionals now more than ever. Extraordinary initiatives, community efforts, and collaborations have emerged to bring people together, but with the advancing pandemic affecting humanity, there is a worldwide increase in mental health conditions that requires our immediate professional attention. I want to expand our horizons and advocate for programs that support the needs of our patients and the community,” expressed Dr. Broz.
The entire Albizu University community wishes Dr. Broz success in her new assignment, confident that she will exalt the profession and make the best use of her knowledge and vocation of service.