Director of Clinical Training, Assistant Professor of Psychology
On Faculty since 2016
Psy.D., Clinical Psychology, Wheaton College, 2005
Pre-Doctoral Internship in Clinical Psychology, Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts Mental Health Center, 2005
Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Psychology, Boston College/University Counseling Services, 2006
M.A., General Theology, Wheaton College, 2009
M.A., Clinical Psychology, Wheaton College, 2002
B.S., Computer Information Systems, East Ukrainian State University, Luhansk, Ukraine, 1999
Licensure and Certifications
Licensed Psychologist, State of Michigan, 2012 - present
Licensed Psychologist Provider, Commonwealth of Massachusetts, 2008 - present
About Vitaliy Voytenko
Dr. Voytenko’s most recent areas of interest and expertise are treatment-resistant depression and religion/spirituality in psychiatry. Prior to joining the Psy.D. Program as Director of Clinical Training and core faculty, he led the Depression Center Project and Treatment-Resistant Depression Consultation Program at Pine Rest Christian Mental Health Services in Grand Rapids, MI. While at Pine Rest, he also worked with adult patients in relational psychoanalytic psychotherapy and served as a teaching and supervising faculty in the ACGME- and AOA-accredited Psychiatry Residency Program and APA-accredited Pre-doctoral Psychology Internship. After returning “home” to Wheaton, he has maintained his ties to Pine Rest and his adjunct academic appointment in the Division of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine at Michigan State University College of Human Medicine.
A native of Ukraine, Dr. Voytenko has a passion for psychology serving the Church in Eastern Europe and around the word. He and his wife Marissa served as missionaries to Ukraine with Mission to the World/Presbyterian Church in America in 2009-2012. He is excited about helping to nurture Wheaton’s international church-psychology connections.
PSYC 894 Clerkship Seminar
Depression is by far the most common, costly, and life-threatening mental illness, affecting approximately 17% of the population in the United States. Worldwide, over 300 million people suffer from clinical depressions; fewer than 50% of those who suffer receive diagnosis or care and only 10-25% receive evidence-based care. One third of those who receive evidence-based care do not respond sufficiently even after multiple treatment trials. There are many possible causes for treatment resistance, including co-morbid physical illness and psychiatric disorders, untreated co-morbid substance use problems, misdiagnosis, inadequate dose or duration of treatment, and other biological and psycho-socio-spiritual factors. Religion/spirituality (R/S) has been largely associated with salutary effects on mental health through its plausible enhancement of self-regulation, attachment and connectedness, compassion for oneself and others and provision of emotional comfort and sense of meaning in the midst of suffering. At the same time, R/S can sometimes contribute to mental illness or otherwise interfere with treatment by fostering anxiety, rigid thinking, excessive guilt, and compulsive practices, producing familial strains, and delaying diagnosis and effective mental health care. My upcoming research program will focus on studying R/S as both a perpetuating factor contributing to treatment resistance and a protective factor enhancing treatment effectiveness in depression treatment.
Nykamp, B., Voytenko, V., Halstead, S. Pine Rest Comprehensive Depression Center. Pine Rest Foundation - Casey Wondergem Grant. 2016-2017. Funded: $125,000
Halstead, S., Voytenko, V., Low, R. Pine Rest/MSU Postdoctoral Psychology Fellowship in Psychotherapy. Pine Rest Foundation - Casey Wondergem Grant. 2015-2016. Funded: $19,000
Halstead, S., Voytenko, V. Best Practice Workgroup/Depression Center of Excellence - Phase III. Pine Rest Foundation - Casey Wondergem Grant. 2015-2016. Funded: $80,000
Halstead, S., Voytenko, V. Best Practice Workgroup/Depression Center of Excellence - Phase II. Pine Rest Foundation - Casey Wondergem Grant. 2014-2015. Funded: $40,000.
Voytenko, V., Halstead, S. Best Practice Workgroup. Pine Rest Foundation - Casey Wondergem Grant. 2013-2014. Funded: $19,500.
Publications in Peer-Reviewed Journals
Karpenko, V., Mykolaychuk, M., Voytenko, V. L., Medyns'ka, Y. (2012). Mental Health Needs of University Students: The Emotional, Interpersonal and Academic Domains (published in Ukrainian), Applied Psychology and Social Work (Ukraine], 11.
McMinn, M. R., & Voytenko, V. L. (2004). Investing the wealth: Intentional strategies for psychology training in developing countries. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice 35(3).
Meek, K. R., McMinn, M. R., Burnett, T., Mazzarella, C., & Voytenko, V. L. (2004). Sexual ethics training in seminary: Preparing students to manage feelings of sexual attraction. Pastoral Psychology, 53(1).
Karpenko V., Voytenko, V. L., Mykolaychuk, M. (August, 2014). Ukrainian Students: Psychological Distress, Intentions to Seek Psychological Help and Barriers. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, Washington, DC.
Voytenko, V. L., Karpenko, V., Gingrich, F., Crawford, N. (April, 2013). Beyond the Two-Week Stint: Intentional Strategies for Longer-Term International Service in Mental Health. Symposium presented at the annual meeting of the Christian Association for Psychological Studies. Portland, OR.
Voytenko, V. L., Coffield, J., Tardonia, J. (April, 2008). From Local to Global: A Distributed Model of Church-Psychology Collaboration. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Christian Association for Psychological Studies. Phoenix, AZ.
Voytenko, V. L., & McMinn, M. R. (July, 2004). Community-Based Care in Ukraine: A Pastoral Training Program. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association. Honolulu, HI.
Voytenko, V. L., & McMinn, M. R. (June, 2003). A model for international training. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Christian Association for Psychological Studies. Anaheim, CA.
Meek, K. R., McMinn, M. R., Burnett, T., Mazzarella, C., & Voytenko, V. L. (June, 2003). Sexual ethics training in seminary: Preparing students to manage feelings of sexual attraction. Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Christian Association for Psychological Studies. Anaheim, CA.
McMinn, M. R., Ellens, B. M., Voytenko, V. L., & Ho, D. (April, 2001). Technology as a tool for international consultation. Poster presented at the annual meeting of the Christian Association for Psychological Studies. Richmond, VA.
Invited Workshops and Trainings
Voytenko, V. L. (June, 2016). Psychotherapy Training and Licensing in the USA. Presentation (via Skype) at International Conference “Personality, Relationships and Human Development: An Interdisciplinary Approach”; Ukrainian Catholic University, Lviv, Ukraine.
Watson, R., Watson, T., Voytenko, V. L. (July, 2004). Marriage and Family Problems: How a Minister Can Help. Thee-day workshop, Kyiv, Ukraine.
Voytenko, V. L. (May, 2004). Depression and Anxiety: How a Minister Can Help. Two-day workshop, Israel College of the Bible, Jerusalem, Israel.
McMinn, M. R., Voytenko, V. L. (August, 2002). Depression: How a Minister Can Help. Three-day workshop, Kyiv, Ukraine.