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Lab Alumni

Graduate Students

 lp Leah Parry is a second year Masters student in the General Clinical Psychology program. Her research interests include Autism Spectrum Disorder, differences in the brain between neurotypical developing children and children with developmental disabilities, and typical developmental tracts. She worked as an Applied Behavior Analyst Technician for approximately four years, and hopes to continue working with the ASD population. She would also like to work with children and youth who have behavioral disorders. She plans to become BCBA certified as well as obtain her TLLP.

Jenipher Servin Olivares
is a second year student in the General Clinical Masters program at Eastern Michigan University. She obtained her BA in psychology from EMU in 2018 and has been involved in the SEED lab since 2017. She is currently involved in the Development of Self-Regulation in Early Childhood Study. Her future career goal is to become a clinician with a specialization in forensics, and working with children involved with the legal system.

stScott Tomey graduated in 2019 from the General Clinical Masters program at Eastern Michigan University. He worked on the Infant Mental Health Home Visiting Evaluation Study as part of the Mind-Mindedness coding team. He was also involved in the Development of Self-Regulation in Early Childhood project. His career interests involve working with populations suffering from depression, stress, or anxiety. He has experience working with children and his career goals consist of continuing to work with this specific population in the future. He earned his BA from Eastern Michigan University in 2017.


Gloria Romero graduated in 2018 with a M.S. from the General Clinical Psychology program at Eastern Michigan University. Her research interests broadly focus on the intergenerational transmission of trauma, examining the mechanisms through which trauma experienced by caregivers is transmitted from parent to child. Currently, she is exploring how maternal PTSD symptoms experienced during pregnancy impact postnatal perceptions of infant emotions and the parent-child relationship. Gloria went on to attend the University of Tennessee-Knoxville to earn a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology.

Undergraduate Students and Volunteers:

mMarkita Payton graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2019. She was a Psychology major with minors in Social Work and Communications. She currently assists with the Development of Self-Regulation Study. She intends to enter a Master’s program where she will strive for a degree that will help her fulfill her goal of working in the psychology field with children and families. 

dDeb Usitalo graduated from Western Michigan University with a BA in Human Resources Management and a minor in Psychology.  She has worked with children from preschool through 3rd grade as well as acting as a Girl Scout and Boy Scout leader. In the SEED Lab, she helped to collect data for the Development of Self-Regulation Study. She will begin the MSW program at University of Michigan in Fall 2019. Her future career goal is to work with children that have developmental disabilities.

trTiara Runyon graduated from Eastern Michigan University in April of 2018 with her BS in Psychology. Tiara has a background in volunteer work with an attachment based parenting intervention for foster children in a program called Strong Beginnings.  She worked on the infant mental health home visiting project and the Development of Self-Regulation Study. She will begin the MSW program at University of Michigan in Fall 2019. Her interests include domestic violence, personality, children who have experienced trauma, and people who deal with illnesses such as anxiety and depression. 


Meghan Waggoner graduated in 2019 from Eastern Michigan University majoring in psychology and neuroscience with a minor in music. She joined the SEED lab Fall 2018 as a transcriber. Her main interests include behavioral neuroscience, abnormal mental illnesses, and the effects of music on the brain. Her goal is to attend graduate school at University of Michigan for neuroscience and become a professor.


Karliegh Hassenzahl 
earned a BS in biology with a chemistry minor in April 2019. She assisted with the Development of Self-Regulation in Early Childhood study. Future plans are medical school pursuing a career in pediatrics. 

skStephanie Knight graduated in December 2018 from Eastern Michigan University majoring in Psychology and minoring in Dance.Stephanie’s research interests include Adverse Childhood Experience and childhood trauma. She conducted research for her Honors thesis which focused Adverse Childhood Experiences and risk behaviors in college students. She was also involved in the infant mental health home visiting project and the self-regulation study. Stephanie plans to pursue her Master’s in Social Work with hopes of becoming a children’s therapist.

marissaMarissa Williams graduated from Eastern Michigan University in December 2018 with a B.S. in Psychology and Mathematics. She assisted the Sleep and Social Development Lab and the SEED Lab with the Development of Self- Regulation in Early Childhood Study. Her interests include learning, childhood development, and identity development. She plans to attend graduate school to earn her PhD in Quantitative Research Methods.


ksKimberly Solomon graduated from Eastern Michigan University with her B.S. in Psychology as well as her B.A. in Women and Gender Studies in April of 2019, additionally minoring in Biology. Kimberly is a member of Psi Chi Honors Society and a McNair Scholar. In Kimberly’s future research, she hopes to continue investigating interpersonal communication, specifically encoding and decoding in clinician-client based relationships to see if subtle differences in nonverbal accuracy can influence the effectiveness of treatment. In exploring this under researched aspect of daily functioning Kimberly hopes to provide better treatment for individuals who seek psychological services.

Ellen Schwander
 graduated from Eastern Michigan University with a bachelor's in psychology and a minor in human biology. She intends to pursue a Master's degree in occupational therapy. 

cCassidy Caldwell graduated in 2018 with a BA from Eastern Michigan University. She was a Psychology major/Social Work minor. She will be attending the Michigan School of Professional Psychology to achieve her Masters in Clinical Psychology. Her focus in the lab was coding for shame in mother interviews. Outside of school, she is also a part-time preschool teacher.