EXCELLENCE IS not a mere word for Prof Emeritus Jitendra Mohan, Department of Psychology, Panjab University but a life-long pursuit. Decades of work in the field of experimental, positive and sport psychology, with a focus on excellence has won him many awards, coveted positions. Now he has been bestowed with the prestigious Honor Award of ‘International Society of Sport Psychology’ (ISSP) for the year 2021 during the virtual 15th World Congress of Sports Psychology at Taipei.
Mohan is the first Asian to receive the award, which is presented every four years in recognition of significant contributions to national and international sport psychology through leadership, research, and/or other professional service. Professor Mohan has played a pivotal role in establishing Sports Psychology in India and is the Founder President of Sports Psychology Association of India, founded in 1985, serving two terms as its president. He also served two terms as a member of the Managing Council of the ISSP, the oldest and largest global society of Sport Psychology, with thousands of members all over the world.
“It is a special day, as sports psychology is about real investment, not just in the players, but in every aspect, on and off the field. And we have come a long way, as we all saw in 2021 Olympics. I came to PU for my MA in psychology from DAV College, Jalandhar in 1960. I was not an athlete, though DAV was famous for athletics. I did my PhD in experimental psychology as I was interested in watching athletes and it was by sheer chance that I was introduced to sports psychology right on this campus,” he said. The Panjab University, in 1975, had organised a training camp for the Indian hockey team for the Hockey World Cup and the VC asked four people, including Prof. Mohan, to help them.