THE HEROIC JOURNEY CURRICULUM CREATORS
Our Curriculum is created by a team of three clinical psychologists, internationally renowned bullying prevention experts, and educators. It is under the direction of Carrie Goldman, author of Harper Collins’ award-winning Bullied: What Every Parent, Teacher and Kid Needs to Know About Ending the Cycle of Fear.
For questions, pricing, and to get this groundbreaking, powerful program into your school,
please contact Leslie Meiselman: Leslie@PopCultureHero.org
The Curriculum is created by:
• Carrie Goldman
• Dr. Andrea Letamendi
• Dr. Janina Scarlet
• Dr. Ali Mattu
• Leslie Meiselman, M.Ed., also serving as Curriculum Editor & Coordinator
• Hero Construction Company Founder Matt Langdon
• Curriculum Creators/Teachers Vanèe Matsalia & Brandon Matsalia
• Disabilities Curriculum Coordinator Scott Palm
DR. ANDREA LETAMENDI
As seen on the cover of the American Psychological Association flagship magazine, The Monitor on Psychology, Dr. Andrea Letamendi is a psychologist, consultant, and TEDx Speaker. She received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from UCSD and has trained at UCLA and the West Los Angeles VA Hospital. Dr. Letamendi is the former Director of Clinical Training at Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services and currently serves as UCLA’s Associate Director of Residential Life for Mental Health Training, Intervention and Response.
Dr. Letamendi’s areas of expertise include multicultural diversity, treatment for trauma and stressor-related disorders, interventions for bullying and cyber-bullying, and psychological resiliency.
As an educator and mental health advocate, Dr. Letamendi has led seminars and lectures at universities, mental health agencies, and pop culture conventions nationwide.
Dr. Letamendi’s guest appearances include HLN's Dr. Drew On Call, Al Jazeera English News, and Geek and Sundry. Her TED Talk about Resiliency and Superheroes is available online.
DR JANINA SCARLET
As a Ukrainian-born refugee, Janina Scarlet, Ph.D. survived Chernobyl radiation and persecution and immigrated to the United States at the age of 12 with her family. She earned doctorates in both Clinical Psychology and Neuroscience and, inspired by the X-Men, developed Superhero Therapy to help patients with anxiety, depression, and PTSD. She has written multiple publications on this topic and has given talks domestically and internationally. She authored Little, Brown Book Group’s Superhero Therapy and Therapy Quest, as well as Harry Potter Therapy, and she has contributed to a number of pop culture psychology books, such as Star Wars Psychology, Wonder Woman Psychology, Game of Thrones Psychology, and many others. She has also created several free comic books for Veterans with PTSD. A popular speaker worldwide, her books have been translated and published in German and Italian. Scarlet currently works as a clinical psychologist at the Center for Stress and Anxiety Management in San Diego, CA.
DR. ALI MATTU
Ali Mattu is a clinical psychologist who specializes in the treatment of anxiety. He aspires to bring psychology to everyone, everywhere, by hosting THE PSYCH SHOW, writing about the psychology of science fiction at Brain Knows Better, presenting to the public, and advocating for the brain and behavior sciences through the American Psychological Association.
Dr. Mattu is an assistant professor at the Columbia University Medical Center. He received his B.A. from the UCLA where he majored in psychology and minored in Asian American studies. Dr. Mattu received his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. He completed a doctoral internship at Bellevue Hospital Center and a post-doctoral fellowship at NYU Langone Medical Center's Child Study Center.
Dr. Mattu is working with Pop Culture Hero Coalition on Crisis Support Network, being created with Random Acts, To Write Love on Her Arms and IM Alive. Known as a “forward thinker” in the field of psychology, Dr. Mattu was named one of The Mighty’s mental health heroes of 2015.
Vanée Matsalia is a GATE certified Demonstration teacher for San Bernardino City Unified School District. She is an integral member of the district’s Rigorous Curriculum Design team; she also serves on the Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment committee for the Secondary Education department. Vanée also works as a freelance journalist for organizations such as BlackGirlNerds.com and is the west coast coordinator for Women in Comics International. She is a frequent speaker at both educational and pop culture conferences alike.
Brandon Matsalia is currently a resident guest-teacher with San Bernardino City Unified School District. H has previously taught at Crafton Hills College, California Baptist University and Aquinas High school. Brandon’s academic interests include African-American literature, critical race theory, composition, and social critical theory. Brandon currently contributes his services to Women in Comics International as a panel moderator and content promoter.
Leslie Meiselman has twenty-one years of experience as a writer, editor, and project manager with expertise developing educational web-based, print, and software products for the K-12 market. She has taught all subjects at the elementary and middle school level.
Matt Langdon is the founder and chair of the Hero Construction Company, creator of the Hero Round Table (the world's leading conference on heroism), and a board member of Dr. Philip Zimbardo's Heroic Imagination Project. He has spoken to audiences across the United States, Europe, and Australia.
CREATOR, DISABILITIES PROGRAM
In 2005, Scott Palm founded Palmtree Enterprises, through which he provides mentoring services to people who use Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices, disability awareness programs for schools and businesses, and resilience and anti-bullying programs for schools. He has been an Ambassador for Prentke Romich Company, the manufacturer of his communication device, since 1992.
On the national scene, Scott has participated as a panelist at California State University Northridge’s Center on Disabilities Conference and as a guest at the Pittsburg Employment Conference; he has presented at the International Society for Augmentative and Alternative Communication conference, among other important events. He serves on the planning committee for the Alternative Communication Employment Conference and is a member of the Snohomish County Developmental Disabilities Advisory Board.
Scott obtained both an Associate Degree in Business and an Associate Degree in Arts. He has worked for the Washington State Liquor Control Board. An internship with Washington State Congressman John Miller turned into a permanent position that lasted until Congressman Miller retired in 1993.
Scott has lectured both in person and online to students at the University of Washington. He is a strong advocate for continued Department of Health and Social Services funding for AAC devices in Washington State.
Scott has cerebral palsy and has lived alone in an apartment in Everett, WA, throughout his entire career, receiving 24 hour support as needed.
DR. KYLE ERWIN
CONSULTANT, SPECIAL NEEDS
Dr. Kyle Erwin has worked for over 15 years as a public school teacher, special education teacher, school administrator, and psychotherapist. In these positions, he has worked primarily with teens and families to address difficulties related to autism spectrum disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, depression, and attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder.
Dr. Erwin has also worked extensively to aid children and parents with school based issues related to social emotional struggles. He has also aided teachers and psychotherapists to improve school programs in order to best meet the individual needs of adolescents. This has included technology integration programs, teacher training, social skills training programs, and regularly chairing visiting committees for the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.
He holds a bachelor's degree in History Education from Northern Arizona University, master's and doctorate degrees in Education from the University of Southern California, and a master's in Marital and Family Therapy from Alliant International University.
DR. DELINAH HURWITZ
CRISIS RESPONSE TEAM
Dr. Hurwitz spent the first two decades of her career working clinically with at risk children and families with multiple diagnoses and struggles. She's spent the last sixteen years educating future therapists and continues to do pro bono clinical interventions when called upon. Dr. Hurwitz has been invited to speak on several occasions to share her clinical knowledge with professionals, parent groups, and private organizations.
She's known for her grace under pressure, as well as her strong ability to connect with people to bring calm and help elicit growth. While always volunteering on at least one or two boards, Dr. Hurwitz has received honors and awards for outstanding teaching and regularly is in the top 5% of her educators in her department with student evaluations.
We are working to raise funding to expand our team and outreach, which will include Dr. Hurwitz, Dr. Janina Scarlet and Dr. Andrea Letamendi on an availability basis.