Milestones in Our History

A Brief History of the Institute for the Psychological Sciences

IPS was founded in 1997 by a group of mental health professionals, academicians, and clinicians who perceived a need for a proper understanding of the interrelationship between psychology and its philosophical foundations.  Originally called the Institute for Faith and Psychological Sciences, the Institute sponsored workshops in Bethesda, Maryland, for licensed mental health professionals, integrating philosophy and psychology.


– Incorporated in the Commonwealth of Viginia as the Institute for Faith and Psyhological Sciences and then changed the name the following year.


  • The Institute for Faith and Psychological Sciences changes its name to the Institute for the Psychological Sciences (IPS or the Institute)
  • Begins offering courses in the main campus, located in Crystal City, leading to the Master of Science (M.S.) Degree in Clinical Psychology.
  • IPS is dedicated to Our Lady of Guadalupe during a ceremony officiated by the Most Rev. Paul S. Loverde, D.D., Bishop of Arlington, Virginia.


  • The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV) grants provisional approval to confer the Master of Science (M.S.) and the Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) degrees in Clinical Psychology.
  • The first degrees are awarded in the Master of Science (M.S.) Program and the first students enroll in the Doctor of Psychology (Psy.D.) Program.
  • The Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman Lecture Series is founded to advance the integration of modern social, psychological, and Catholic thought.


  • The Scholarly Research Center is founded to sponsor various research projects of special relevance to the mission of the Institute.  The Human Nature Project and the Anthropology Project are established at this time.


  • Rev. Richard Gill, L.C., S.T.L., is appointed as the first president of IPS.


  • The Centre for Philosophical Psychology opens in collaboration with Blackfriars Hall at the University of Oxford in England.
  • The IPS Press is established to publish approaches to psychological sciences that are integrated with a Catholic view of the human person and the moral life.


  • The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges grants regional accreditation. 
  • The first IPS Doctoral Degree in Clinical Psychology is awarded.
  • Rev. John Hopkins, L.C., S.T.L., is appointed as the second president.


  • The Psy.D. Program is recognized as an Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB)/National Register Designated Doctoral Program in Psychology.
  • Opening of the Center for Psychological Services for student practicum experiences.
  • The IPS Press releases its first publication, The Person and the Polis: Faith and Values within the Secular State.


  • Rev. Charles Sikorsky, L.C., J.D., J.C.L., is appointed as the third president.
  • Two faculty members become founding board members of the Catholic Psychotherapy Association (CPA).


  • The first Psy.D. graduates are licensed as clinical psychologists.


  • IPS Online Education Seminars are launched to begin offering distance learning opportunities.
  • The faculty begin the development of a “handbook” of cases exemplifying a Catholic integrative approach to clinical practice, as a result of the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP).  When completed, the handbook will be utilized in the curriculum of all its degree programs. In addition, case presentations commence for students.
  • The IPS Diversity Committee, comprised of faculty, students and staff, is established to offer a series of seminars.


  • IPS’ APA CE accreditation is successfully renewed.


  • IPS launches an online M.S. in Psychology program that focuses on educating working professionals and giving them the practical tools they need to become transformational leaders in their workplace or ministry.