Associate Professor of Psychology
Director, Master of Arts Program in Clinical Psychology
University of Detroit Mercy
Kristen M. Abraham earned her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Bowling Green State University where she received specialized training in community psychology. Abraham joined University of Detroit Mercy in 2013 after completing three years of postdoctoral clinical psychology and health services research training in the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). In 2017 she received the Detroit Mercy Faculty Achievement Award.
Abraham teaches graduate and undergraduate courses and is a licensed psychologist with clinical interests in psychosocial rehabilitation and recovery for serious mental illness (schizophrenia and bipolar disorders), substance use disorders and cognitive-behavior therapies. Her research is focused on using socioecological approaches to understand how social, interpersonal and healthcare systems influence and can be modified to improve the lives of people with serious mental illness and their family members.
Abraham's current research projects include studies of public mental health systems, health and healthcare for people with serious mental illness, and the employment experiences of peer support specialists. These studies are carried out in the context of the Clinical-Community Psychology Research Group—a team of graduate and undergraduate students who are interested in gaining research experience related to people with serious mental illness, health and healthcare, clinical and community psychology. She maintains active research collaborations with investigators at other universities and in the VHA.
Within the Department of Psychology at University of Detroit Mercy, Abraham mentors undergraduate and graduate student research, serves as director of the master of arts program in clinical psychology and is a member of the Clinical Training Committee and a clinical supervisor for the doctoral program in clinical psychology. She serves the broader university as the social science liaison to the ReBUILDetroit Program in the College of Engineering and Science and contributes to the Master of Community Development Program in the School of Architecture. Outside of the University, Abraham maintains an appointment at the VHA Serious Mental Illness Treatment Resource and Evaluation Center (SMITREC) where she directs the national evaluation for a program entitled Re-Engaging Veterans with Serious Mental Illness in Treatment (SMI Re-Engage).