Graduate Students

CeCelia Palow

CeCelia is interested in interventions to improve cognitive functioning. In particular, she is interested in how physical activity may enhance cognition. Currently, she is investigating the influence of physical activity on stress, as this relationship may be a mediator to the connection between physical activity and cognition.

Cecelia Palow

Stephanie Robinson

Stephanie is a  first-year Ph.D. student with a focus on cognition and successful aging. Specifically, she is interested in social factors that affect cognitive declines that accompany aging and how they can be modified to prevent, delay, or ameliorate such declines. She graduated from Elon University with a B.A. in Psychology where she explored strategies to improve episodic memory. She then graduated with honors from the Catholic University of America with an M.A. in General Psychology. At Brandeis, she is currently examining how older adults' use of compensatory strategies can affect their memory on a day-to-day basis.

Stephanie Robinson

Michael Polito

Michael Polito is a fifth-year Ph.D. student with an interest in anxiety, personality, and the physiological markers of stress and arousal. He graduated from SUNY Fredonia with a Bachelor's degree in Psychology, where he and a colleague conducted a study on how shyness could play a role in proximity decisions and memory formation when approaching a stranger. At Brandeis, his research has examined personality differences in physiological reactivity across the adult lifespan. Currently, he is studying the effect of stereotyping on physiological stress responses and behavior. Mike also assists the Rohleder/Wolf Health Psychology lab in preparing biological samples for analysis and in performing cognitive testing.

Michael Polito

Salom Teshale

Salom Teshale is a first-year
Ph.D student. She is interested in decision-making across the lifespan, specifically strategies and methods older adults use to make life decisions. She graduated with honors from the University of Chicago with a B.A. in Psychology; her undergraduate work focused on the role of emotion in autobiographical memory accuracy in older adults.

Photo of Salom Teshale by Lori DeSantis Photography

(Image Credit: Lori DeSantis Photograp

Nicholas Brisbon

Nick is a first-year Ph.D. student whose research interests involve the concept of mindfulness. He is currently exploring the effects of trait mindfulness on stress, sleep quality, and memory. However, his interests regarding mindfulness are quite broad. Nick graduated from UMass Amherst with a B.A. in psychology and most recently earned an M.S. in clinical psychology from Springfield College. Previous to enrolling at Brandeis, Nick was engaged in clinical work in Northampton, MA.

Nick Brisbon

Julianna Bednar

Julie is a masters degree student. Her interests include exploring the effects of trait mindfulness and mindfulness-based treatments on age-related issues including stress, memory and overall physical and subjective aging.  Before Brandeis, Julie worked with Dr. Ellen Langer at Harvard University studying the effects of mindfulness on weight change in college women. Julie is interested in continuing her research on the mind-body relationship as it relates to the physical and cognitive progression toward older adulthood.

Julianna Bednar