Debangshu Roygardner, PhD, is the Assistant Director of Mental Health Services and the Assistant Director of the Vincent J. Fontana Center for Child Protection at New York Foundling. He is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology through the School of Professional Studies at the City University of New York. He is clinically trained in Trauma Systems Therapy and is a certified Trauma Systems Therapy trainer. His research focuses on implementation science, evidenced based practice, social-emotional learning in youth, civic engagement in youth and the use of contemporary art (i.e. Hip Hop) in prevention and intervention.


Dr. Roygardner’s goal is the aid in policy that prevents child maltreatment, to streamline and help in the efficacy of empirically based therapies, and to integrate developmentally appropriate and culturally relevant interventions and preventions in psychotherapy and pedagogy.


Dr. Roygardner earned his PhD in Psychology from the Graduate Center at the City University of New York in 2017 along with a Doctoral Certificate in Africana Studies. His dissertation was entitled: “Letter to the President: Longitudinal Critical Discourse Analysis of Academic and Hip Hop Genres in a Rap Narrative Program”. While at CUNY, he was the recipient of the Dean K. Harrison Fellowship for Outstanding Minority Students and the Enhanced Chancellor’s Fellowship. He also co-edited the book “See You at the Crossroads: Hip Hop Scholarship at the Intersections” which was awarded the 2016 Critic’s Choice Award through the American Education Studies Association.


Prior to CUNY, he earned his Master’s in Arts in Counseling for Mental Health and Wellness from New York University and a Bachelor’s of Science from Vanderbilt University where he was a Posse Scholar.


In his previous life, Dr. Roygardner was a Hip Hop artist who performed nationally and internationally and whose work appeared on major media including CNN, NBC, Fox, RapGenius and Huffington Post.




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American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children  |  APSAC Center for Child Policy  |  2017