Our dedication to Racial Equality and Social Justice (RESJ) spans decades. Learn more about our RESJ Initiative

time exposed photo of headlights in urban center

Steven Hassan

Class of 1985,
Steven Hassan, Cambridge College alumni
"My Independent Research Project at Cambridge College was on cults, and my first book was developed from that research project."

Steven Hassan, M.A., M.Ed., LMHC, NCC, holds a Master’s degree in counseling psychology from Cambridge College. He is a mental health professional who has been helping people leave destructive cults since 1976 after he was deprogrammed from Sun Myung Moon’s Unification Church. He is the author of four books Combating Cult Mind Control: The #1 Best-Selling Guide to Protection, Rescue, and Recovery from Destructive Cults, Releasing the Bonds: Empowering People to Think for ThemselvesFreedom of Mind: Helping Loved Ones Leave Controlling People, Thoughts & Beliefs, and  The Cult of Trump: A Leading Cult Expert Explains How The President Uses Mind Control.

"My Independent Research Project at Cambridge College was on cults, and my first book was developed from that research project," says Steven.

He is the founding director of the Freedom of Mind Resource Center, located outside Boston. He developed the BITE and Influence Continuum models to assess what control methods an individual or group uses and where they fall on a continuum from not harmful to extremely harmful. Steven provides consulting services internationally including intervention services using his Strategic Interactive Approach to helping a person become free from undue influence, recovery services using his Freedom of Mind Approach to Recovery and Healing, and litigation consulting.

He has served as an educator and speaker for individuals and families; mental health and legal professionals; corporations; government agencies concerned with undue influence, violent extremism and human trafficking; and graduate students and professionals including at the Harvard Longwood Psychiatry Residency Training Program and The Program in Psychiatry and the Law, both affiliated with the Harvard Medical School. He serves as an instructor for the Harvard Law School Trial Advocacy Workshop. He speaks at conferences in the U.S. and abroad. He authors scholarly articles and chapters. He is a co-developer of a coercion resiliency curriculum for commercial sex trafficking victims. He advocates internationally for changes to the legal system. His work has been translated into French, Spanish, German, Italian, Polish, Russian, Persian, Slovak, Chinese and Japanese. He is frequently featured in print, online, and in broadcast media including on Leah Remini’s “Scientology and the Aftermath,” TEDx, CNN, NPR, 60 Minutes, Dateline, and many others. He recently earned a PhD at Fielding University.