Human beings and being human are at the core of the Chicago Psychoanalytic Institute’s mission. The Institute is dedicated to advancing knowledge of human beings— their feelings, thoughts and behavior—and to improving people’s lives.

Since 1932, the Institute has contributed to the expansion of the field of psychoanalysis through education and scholarship. Today, the Institute offers a contemporary model of psychoanalytic thought relevant to individual and community life.

The Institute’s education programs for mental health professionals provide advanced training in the theory and practice of psychoanalysis and psychotherapy. The Institute’s treatment centers provide psychoanalytically informed services for children, adolescents and adults. Its continuing education and community engagement programs bring psychoanalytic ideas to public discussions of cultural and social issues.

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Latest news from the Institute

  • Institute names new dean

    Prudy Gourguechon headshotPresident Erika Schmidt announced in June that Prudence Gourguechon, MD, will be the next Dean of the Chicago Psychoanalytic Institute, effective July 1. 

    Schmidt thanked outgoing Dean Neal Spira for his five years of service, recognizing his contribution to the substantial developments that have occurred at the Institute in that period, and welcomed Gourguechon.

    “Prudy brings a broad perspective on psychoanalysis to the position of Dean along with a wealth of administrative and implementation experience,” Schmidt said.  “She is eager to bring her extensive experience with psychoanalysis and psychoanalytic organizations to the challenges the Chicago Institute faces as we move forward.”

    Among other qualifications, Gourguechon is a past president of the American Psychoanalytic Association (2008-2010), as well as serving in other leadership posts at APsaA.  She is a 1994 graduate of the Institute's Psychoanalytic Education Program.

    Gourguechon noted Spira set an inspiring example to follow: “I hold Neal up as an ideal of good humor, positivity and sensibility and will strive to measure up to the high standard he has set,” she said. “I look forward to working with all of you--those I know well and those I hope to know well--faculties, board members, staff and students.  Please call, email, text or stop me in the halls with any ideas or questions you have.”

    Professional and Personal Background

    In 2017, Gourguechon closed her clinical psychiatry and psychoanalytic practice of 35 years to found Invantage Advising, a consulting firm offering psychoanalytically based insights to leaders in business and finance, organizations and professionals.   She also works as a writer and speaker on topics including the psychology of money, investing, the new retirement, and career shifts.  She blogs regularly for Forbes.com on the psychology of business and especially leadership strategy. 

    She also developed a comprehensive communications strategic plan for the International Psychoanalytical Association and has conducted numerous workshops nationally and internationally to help colleagues learn to use social media, blogging and websites to enhance the public's understanding of psychoanalysis.

    She is a graduate of Yale College, the University of Michigan Medical School and completed psychiatric training at Northwestern.  She co-founded the Chicago Chapter of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs and serves as Vice President of the World Mental Health Coalition.  Currently she is working on a book titled Starting Older: Understanding and Making the Most of a New Life Stage.  She lives in Chicago's Andersonville neighborhood with her husband Jacques.  She has two adult children and two adult step-children and regrets that none of them live in Chicago.

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