INS New York 2018 Raffle Winner – Sandra Shaheen

Sandra Shaheen joined INS in the early 1980s, as a member of the teaching and clinical staff at Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. She has been an active member since that time. As president of the Massachusetts Neuropsychological Society (MNS), she chaired a symposium at INS in Boston (2011) with Bill Barr, Dean Delis, Rhoda Au, Russ Bauer and Deborah Fein, commemorating the contributions of Edith Kaplan to clinical work and research in neuropsychology. She is active in professional affairs and educational programming for MNS and the American Academy of Pediatric Neuropsychology (ABPdN) and has a clinical and forensic practice in Boston. She was invited to present on brain effects of toxic exposure, and factors which mediate plasticity in the developing child, at the AAPdN meetings in Las Vegas (2017). She is a member of NAN, APA, and the Massachusetts Psychological Association.

As she (uncharacteristically) registered early for the 2019 conference in NYC, she considered the odds of getting tickets to Hamilton directly, and thought, why not? When you live in Boston, NYC means going south for New Years. Maybe it is warmer there.

INS meetings set the tone for the future of neuropsychology. Thanks to the leadership of the Society for new directions and keeping relevant in our changing field.

About the Trip!

From our Marriott Hotel in Times Square, the Richard Rogers Theater, with the Hamilton production, was just a few steps away.  We were greeted upon check in by the marketing contact who works with INS, and we were warmly welcomed to “the City”  with reassurance, helpful advice, and a game plan for our stay.


In our room was another welcome-a gift pack with “Bucket list” journal, recyclable carry bag which we later used for our purchases in the holiday street market outside the hotel, bath salts for relaxing, a nice pinot noir, and a handwritten greeting.  Hamilton, the musical, is a brilliantly told tale of American history-and the potential for compromise, as well as divisiveness, which makes the show as relevant as any news cast or political commentary.  It was great fun!  Actors commanded their time on stage as if it was the most brilliant moment of their career, ensembles mesmerized, wordsmithing of a fast thinking genius who borrowed the rhythms of rap make this story entertainment for new generations.  

Dinner in the revolving restaurant on the 46th floor was old school elegant-three courses served by waitstaff who took pride in an innovative menu, and made sure we had a windowed view of the lights and sparkle of New York.  We got in as dusk was settling, and stayed until lights dotted the skyline.  New York hotel staff during the holidays make that special effort to join in the celebration-managers were on duty for extended hours, yet managed smiles, courtesy, and humor; an executive chef met in the hallway escorted us to a hard to find private room where we could sip drinks, sample asian inspired tapas, and be ushered to the outdoor events as the crowds gathered in ready for the ball to drop.  We were invited to the NYE afterparty-some good dancing to be had.

We rounded out our stay with a trip to the Whitney with my son Tim Gilligan and his fiancĂ© Ross Norton.  An Andy Warhol retrospective is on now through INS, and I recommend this show.  It is a quick cab ride away, and adjacent to the Highline, which is a great walk and view, even this time of year.  Photos below show some of Broadway’s lights, the amazing set of the play, the view of New Years Eve festivities from our hotel room, along with iconic King Kong and Albert Einstein who join us in a refrain of “I love New York.”  See you in February.

Sandra Shaheen