Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu, Ed.D., NCC, NCCC, NCSC, LPCC, has been serving as the Director of Research and Professor in the doctoral program of Counselor Education and Supervision at the Lindsey Wilson College, Columbia, Kentucky since August 2014. He was formerly a distinguished professor of research and chairman of the Department of Educational and Counseling Psychology at the University of Louisville. Dr. Sandhu holds six graduate degrees including Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Teaching (B.T.), and M.A. (English) from the Punjab University, Chandigarh, India. In addition, he earned M.Ed., Specialist in English, and Doctor’s Degree in Counselor Education and Supervision from the United States.
Dr. Sandhu currently serves in the editorial board of the Journal of Underrepresented and Minority Progress. He has served the profession of counselor education and supervision and counseling psychology with distinction for more than 25 years. In addition to more than 50 refereed journal articles and 70 book chapters, Dr. Sandhu has authored or edited thirteen text books. Some of Dr. Sandhu’s notable textbooks which significantly impacted and contributed to the field of professional counseling and psychotherapy literature include:
Throughout his professional career, Dr. Sandhu has received several highly prestigious and distinguished awards including: Fulbright Senior Research Scholar Award (2002); Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research Award (2010); Fulbright Senior Research Scholar Award (2017); AMCD Research Awards (twice); Multicultural Teaching Award; Chi Sigma Iota Research Award, President’s Distinguished Faculty Award for Outstanding Scholarship, Research and Creativity; Mississippi State University Alumnus of the Year Award, and the Kentucky Counselor Educator of the Year Award twice (2001 & 2012). In 2001 Sage published Dr. Sandhu’s autobiographical account of 15 pages in the Handbook of Multiculural Counseling (2001) to recognize him as one of the pioneers of multicultural counseling and development.
On March 21, 2012, Dr. Sandhu was honored as a Fellow of the American Counseling Association at ACA Convention in San Francisco. He was also honored as the Diplomate, by the American Mental Health Counselors Association on July 20, 2012 in Orlando, Florida. Dr. Sandhu also received one of the most coveted awards, the Arthur A. Hitchcock Distinguished Professional Service Award from American Counseling Association on March 23 in Cincinnati. He was the sole recipient of this award from more than 58,000 professional members. He also received, the Samuel H. Johnson Professional Service Award from the Association for Multicultural Counseling and Development on March 23 at the ACA annual convention in Cincinnati. On April 22, 2013, Dr. Sandhu was also honored with Kentucky Counseling Ambassador Award by the Kentucky Mental Health Counseling Association.
The university-wide selection committee at the University of Louisville selected Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu to receive the 2013 President’s Distinguished Career Achievement Faculty Award in Service. The Distinguished Faculty Service Awards are given annually to faculty who have made exceptional service contributions to the University of Louisville, their profession, the community or region, national or international service, and career of service. Dr. Sandhu received this prestigious, Lifetime Career Achievement Award on September 9, 2013 at the Celebration of Faculty Excellence. On August 23, 2013, the Council for International Exchange of Scholars (CIES) has awarded Dr. Sandhu, Fulbright Senior Specialist Award. Most recently, Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu received Senior Fulbright-Nehru Research Award for India on August 8, 2017. This Fulbright Research Award is called the core or classic award and considered the most prestigious award.
Dr. Sandhu was honored as the Outstanding Counselor Educator from all the nationwide tenured counselor educators at the annual convention of the Association for Counselor Educators and Supervision held from October 16-20, 2013 at Denver, Colorado. On October 25, 2013, Kentucky Counseling Association honored Dr. Sandhu with its most prestigious, Kearny Campbell Memorial Award.
Dr. Daya Sandhu received one of India’s highly prestigious Hind Rattan Award on January 25, 2014 in New Delhi. The Hind Rattan (Hindi phrase translated to English as “Jewel of India”) is one of the highest Indian diasporic awards granted annually to non-resident Indian citizens (NRIs) by the NRI Welfare Society of India, an organization under the umbrella of the Government of India. The award ceremony is attended by senior members of the Government of India and of the Supreme Court of India.
American Counseling Association honored Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu with the most prestigious, 2014 ACA Presidential Award, at the Annual Convention of ACA held at Honolulu, Hawaii from March 27-30, 2014. Dr. Sandhu’s outstanding counseling career as a scholar, educator, and mentor was highlighted with much praise and adoration. The Kentucky Counseling Association initiated a new, “Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu Research and Creative Innovations in Counseling Award” on June 22, 2015 in recognition of Dr. Sandhu’s national and international contributions to the profession of counseling. Briefly, this award is designed to recognize and honor counselors within Kentucky Counseling Association who have conducted high quality research or developed innovative programs. The results of these elite professionals’ work are of significance and interest to counselors as well as contribute to the expansion of the counseling profession and/or lead to new methods or services for clients.
Dr. Sandhu was honored as the Outstanding Counselor Educator from all the nationwide tenured counselor educators at the annual convention of the Association for Counselor Educators and Supervision held from October 16-20, 2013 in Denver, Colorado. On October 25, 2013, Kentucky Counseling Association honored Dr. Sandhu with its most prestigious, Kearny Campbell Memorial Award. American Counseling Association honored Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu with the most prestigious, 2014 ACA Presidential Award, at the Annual Convention of ACA held in Honolulu, Hawaii from March 27-30, 2014. Dr. Sandhu’s outstanding career as a scholar, educator, and mentor was highlighted with much praise and adoration.
The Kentucky Counseling Association initiated a new, “Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu Research and Creative Innovations in Counseling Award” on June 22, 2015, in recognition of Dr. Sandhu’s national and international contributions to the profession of counseling. Briefly, this award is designed to recognize and honor counselors within Kentucky’s organizations that have conducted high-quality research or developed innovative programs.
On May 13, 2015, Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu was honored with a medal and Pravasi Rattan Award by the NRI Welfare Society of India at the Global Achievers Conclave held at the Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. It was truly a great occasion to be honored with other distinguished NRI’s from all around the world who made significant and lasting contributions in numerous fields such as academia, medicine, business, law, and politics. Dr. Sandhu was one of the twenty global achievers honored from 23 million persons of Indian origin living abroad. This award is bestowed upon a very few selected professionals for their efforts to build closer links among nations; promote social and humanitarian causes; devote their time and energies to initiatives meant for the welfare of the local communities and for their eminent or outstanding work in their chosen profession.
Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu, Professor and Director of Research, at the Lindsey Wilson College received the Mahatma Gandhi Pravasi Samman (Non-Resident Honor) Award on October 25, 2018 at the annual conclave of Global Achievers held at the House of Commons, British Parliament, London, England. The NRI Welfare Society of India conferred this award on Dr. Sandhu for his eminence and outstanding work in his professional field; philanthropic and charitable work in Punjab, India, and the welfare of the Sikh community in the United States. Dr. Sandhu was one of the 30 recipients selected from 31.5 million Non Resident Indian living all around the world. Dr. Sandhu also addressed the participants at the House of Commons, the British Parliament, London on the significance and challenges of the globalization.
During his lengthy professional career of 35 years, Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu has made more than 250 professional presentations at the, local, state, regional, national, and international levels. International presentations have taken Dr. Sandhu to almost 27 countries including, Canada, China, India, France, Greece, Jamaica, Philippines, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, to name a few.
Dr. Sandhu has served on several editorial boards including the Journal of Counseling & Development (the flagship Journal of the American Counseling Association), the Journal of Counseling and Values, Journal of Counselor Education and Supervision, Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development, Professional School Counseling, International Journal of the Accelerating Learning and Teaching, Journal of Counseling Research and Practice, Psychological Reports, School Counselor, Journal of Adult Development and Aging, etc. He also edited special issues of various national and international journals. Some of these special issues included, School Violence for the Professional School Counseling; Asian and Pacific Islander Americans for the Journal of the Multicultural Counseling and Development; Suggestopedia and Neurolinguistic Programming and Learning Styles and Suggestopedia, these both special issues were published in the Journal for Accelerative Learning and Teaching
Since January, 1986 when Dr. Sandhu joined the American Counseling Association (ACA), he has actively participated in the professional and leadership activities of this world renowned association of more than 58,000 professional members. He has served on ACA’s Ethics Committee, Human Rights Committee, Research and Knowledge Committee, and International Committee several times. He also chaired ACA’s Research and Knowledge Committee and International Committee twice.
It is worth noting that Dr. Sandhu served on CACREP Executive Board of Directors for five years (1996-2001). While on this board, he also participated actively in developing and revising standards for CACREP accreditation in general and Social and Cultural Diversity in particular. Presently, he is serving on CACREP’s visitation team to evaluate interested universities program for much desired national recognition through CACREP accreditation.
Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu served as the national president of the Association for Multicultural Counseling and Development (2009-2010), a national division of ACA, and started Association of Mental Health Counselors in India, AMHC (India). Since May 4, 2010, Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu has been serving Founding Executive Director of AMHC.
As the Chair of the International Committee of ACA, he has started ACA International Counseling Interest Network which is poised to become the newest and the 21th division of ACA. Currently, there are members of 481 ICIN and 1148 ICIN members are on the Facebook. The International Counseling Interest Network (ICIN), proposed and launched by Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu is one of his major life time professional accomplishments to validate counseling as a major profession to address mental health challenges worldwide.
Internationalization of professional counseling is truly Dr. Sandhu’s signature contribution to ameliorate psychological afflictions of humans throughout the world. Through his publications and cutting-edge research, Dr. Sandhu has become the cynosure of his colleagues and students. The sharp focus of Sandhu’s research on the most current issues of social justice, human rights, diversity, equity, and empowerment of marginalized populations have made Dr. Sandhu as a popular researcher and scholar. Dr. Sandhu’s selection as a Fulbright Senior Research Scholar in 2002, second time again as a Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research Scholar in 2010, and Senior Fulbright-Nehru Research Scholarship Award third time is a clear testimony of Dr. Sandhu’s brilliant and an illustrious career. While receiving Senior Fulbright Research Scholarship Award even once is considered a matter of great pride, receiving it three times is amazing and rare among the scholars. It is like winning the Triple Crown Trophy in Research and Scholarship.
Dr. Sandhu’s contributions to the field of counseling are solid and substantial. Not only in the United States but throughout the world, Dr. Sandhu has established himself as a leader, educator, researcher, and a scholar of a very high caliber. As evidenced through numerous awards, honors, prizes, and accolades, Dr. Sandhu’s professional contributions are at par excellence.
Here are some observations made by eminent scholars from the fields of professional counseling and counseling psychology about Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu as a person and as a scholar. Dr. Charles Ridley, Dean for Research and the University Graduate School, Indiana University wrote about Dr. Sandhu: “Reading Dr. Sandhu’s autobiographical account, “An eco-cultural analysis of agonies and ecstasies of my life in the Handbook of Multicultural Counseling brings to mind the words of the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., “Never judge a man by the heights he has ascended, but by the depths from which he has come from.”
Dr. Joseph G. Ponterotto, a worldwide leading authority in the area of multiculturalism and the senior editor of the Handbook of Multicultural Counseling (2001): “Impressively, despite challenges and traumas experienced throughout his life, we note in Dr. Sandhu’s story a deep sustaining spiritual connection that has assisted him in maintaining a love of life and work. He appears to have found deep meaning in his life experiences that inform and guide his ground breaking professional work, which includes classic books and journal articles on fighting racial prejudice, gender inequity, and youth violence. He is clearly a renaissance person, a multicultural person (p. 157).
Ponterotto, J.G., Casas, J.M., Suzuki, L.A., & Alexander, C.M. (2001). Handbook of Multicultural Counseling (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
In addition to his scholarly activities as a Professor in the field of Counselor Education and Supervision, Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu has a played a leading role in his community both in the United States and India. For instance, he is the Founding President of the Sikh Society of Kentucky since 2011. With help from the Sikh community, he established the Sikh Gurudwara (Temple) in Louisville which opened its door on April 14, 2012 for religious services. It was the very first Gurdwara ever opened in the State of Kentucky. At his native village Gandhran, Punjab, India, Dr. Daya Singh Sandhu and his wife, Usha Sandhu were invited on March 17, 2018 as Chief Guests to perform the opening ceremony of a village library and a small hospital called, Guru Nanak Dev Hospital for the free medical help for the people of their village. All the people of the village enjoyed the refreshments at this occasion and they honored Dr. Sandhu with a memento calling him the most respected son of the village. The whole village and its panchayat, a governing body, thanked Dr. Daya Sandhu and his wife Usha Sandhu for their generosity and congratulated them for the completion of a much needed library and the hospital in the village Gandhran.
Please click this link to learn more about Dr. Sandhu’s awards, honors, and recognitions.