William L. Hathaway, Ph.D.
Associate Professor (1997)
- Clinical Psychology of Religion
- Clinical Child Psychology
- Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
- Personality Assessment
- Professional Identity & Formation Issues
Regent has provided the ideal setting for me to bring together several different strands of my life. I have always had a passion for learning how things work and why things are the way they are. This led me to a fascination with science. I obtained a number of science merit badges as a Boy Scout, joined an astronomy club at a local university, and was tasked with doing science demonstrations at elementary schools as a high school science assistant. During this early part of my life, I seemed bent on pursuing a career in the natural sciences. I entered high school during the Vietnam War as the cultural idealism and turmoil of the 1960s were giving way to the self-obsessive diversions of the 1970s. Those times marked me. While I retained my fascination with science, I found myself increasingly preoccupied by questions about the meaning of life. The spiritual training I had received in my liberal protestant church had effectively instilled in me a hunger for spiritual things. However, it provided little guidance on how to fill that spiritual longing. God brought a number of Christians my way that provided me with a clear presentation of the gospel and I became a Christian in the summer of my sixteenth year. My early Christian discipleship was nurtured by influences from the Jesus Movement and a number of evangelical and charismatic college ministries.
My new Christian faith led to a desire to find a career in which I could reach out to others with the redeeming love of Jesus Christ. God continued to stimulate my intellectual curiosity. I entered a Christian liberal arts college, Taylor University, to pursue studies in philosophy of religion and psychology. Taylor gave me a solid foundation in Christian worldview training and led me to appreciate the importance of a Christian higher education. I then choose to pursue my master's in philosophy at Bowling Green State University. I went to BGSU because they had started an innovative program in 'applied philosophy,' the first of its kind. My faith met numerous challenges in my studies in this secular philosophy program. For instance, I had the opportunity to complete a readings course in the philosophy of religion with Antony Flew, one of the 20th century's most prominent atheist philosophers. During these years, I found that the end of honest and prayerful intellectual search was always a deepening affirmation of my faith. I was also fortunate during these years to work with the renowned psychologist of religion, Ken Pargament, who was member of BGSU psychology faculty. Ken's work on religious coping demonstrated how meaningful aspects of faith could be rigorously investigated in ways that remain respectful to that faith. I remained at BGSU, completing my Doctorate in Clinical Psychology. Although I did not know what shape my final career would take, I felt led by God to pursue multidisciplinary studies in psychology, philosophy and religion. Not wanting a merely academic faith, I sought out various opportunities for being involved in ministry during these years, finding service as a youth minister, Christian educator and a founding leader in a college ministry.
My clinical training was fleshed out during seven years as an Air Force psychologist. My professional experiences treating military members and their dependents during the Gulf War and the period following this in the '90s, gave me an appreciation for the practical value of psychology in helping people effectively cope with life's demands. During my time in Germany, I was asked to supervise counseling interns for the University of Maryland Master's Program in Professional Counseling, as well as to teach practicum and other counseling courses. It was during this time that I became more familiar with the emerging field of professional counseling.
I chose to leave active duty to complete a post-doctoral fellowship in clinical child psychology with Russell Barkley at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center ADHD clinic, the leading research clinic for ADHD. During my time as an Air Force clinician, I had instructed numerous philosophy and psychology courses on military campuses as an adjunct. I felt drawn simultaneously to clinical work, academic roles and ministry. I was looking for a way to serve God in these varied roles.
It was not long before God provided direction. As I was finishing my fellowship, a faculty position opened at Regent University in a new Christian psychology program. This seemed like an ideal fit. I would be able to function as an academician in a clinically focused program that was dedicated to Christian higher education. The emphasis in renewal theology at Regent University also fit my personal faith background. Although I did not envision being in this specific vocational setting when I left home as a teenager to embark on my college training, it now seems that God has orchestrated my life journey to prepare me for just this sort of role. I feel humbled to be a part of the team that God has called together at Regent to train future psychologists and counselors. At Regent, I find that I am able to 'indulge' my curiosity about God's world through research programs focusing on the clinical psychology of religion, philosophy of psychology, clinical issues in children and the relationship between various mental health professions. It has been an ideal community of Christian scholars in which I can continue to pursue my passion for lifelong learning and Christian service.