2014 Honorary Degree Recipient: Psychology Division

Everett L. Worthington, Jr., PhD, a professor of psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University, was awarded a Doctorate of Humane Letters, an honorary degree and the highest honor the Board of Regents of Pepperdine University can award a professor. He is one of the foremost scholars on the subject of forgiveness, having written or edited 34 books, and having published well over 350 papers and scholarly chapters on the topic. Worthington has taught at Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia’s largest state university, since receiving his PhD in 1978.

In addition to his role as a professor, he served as the director of counseling training (1997-1999) and as department chair (1999- 2005). He has also served as the president of American Psychological Association (APA) Division 36 (Psychology of Religion), was the founding editor of Marriage and Family: A Christian Journal, and currently serves on six editorial boards.

Notably among his many awards and recognitions, Worthington has been twice named an APA Fellow, and received the Virginia Commonwealth University Award for Excellence and the Narramore Award for Integration of Psychology and Christianity from the Christian Association for Psychological Studies. In 2013 he was honored as one of the Top Psychology Professors in Virginia.

Worthington received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee- Knoxville and his master of science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, both in nuclear engineering. He received his master of arts and PhD, both in psychology (counseling) from the University of Missouri- Columbia.

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