Alycia is a fifth-year Ph.D. student in the Lifespan Developmental Psychology Lab, who is broadly interested in the field of cognitive aging. Her undergraduate work at the University of Massachusetts Amherst examined the importance of sleep to memory across life, which led her to become interested in interventions (like physical activity) that can improve sleep. Her dissertation work examines the ways in which physical activity and sleep interact to influence memory across the adult lifespan. Alycia recently received a University Prize Instructorship grant to develop and teach her own course 'Exploring Sleep: Interdisciplinary Perspecitives' at Brandeis.
Marissa is a fourth year PhD student in the Social Interaction and Motivation lab. Her research broadly focuses on the neural and physiological processes involved in the embodied understanding of another's emotion state, with an emphasis on interpersonal interactions and stressful situations. Current projects examine the relationship between various measures of empathy, neural representations of others, and physiological synchrony during a real time interaction. Marissa is particularly interested in the role of stress among these relationships and how it might impact our ability to understand another's actions, intentions, and emotions in a social context. In her free time, Marissa enjoys staying active through hiking, rock climbing, and running marathons.
Claire is a PhD student in the Biological Health Psychology Lab. Broadly, her research interests include examining how body image, self-objectification, and chronic and acute stress fit together to impact overall health. Current and upcoming projects focus on cultural differences in the impact of body image and self-objectification on chronic stress and the role of self-objectification within an acute stress context. Claire received her BA in psychology from Niagara University and enjoys weightlifting, painting, and playing the accordion.
Krystal is a PhD student in Dr. Angela Gutchess's lab studying the effects of culture on different forms of memory. Before coming to Brandeis, she received a BS in Psychology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst where she completed an honors thesis using fMRI to investigate the role of visual cortex in recognition memory. Outside the lab, she enjoys creative writing, binging Netflix shows, and coming up with fan theories about the latest Marvel movie.
Jeremy is a fourth-year PhD student studying intergroup bias and dehumanization, with an emphasis on interpersonal interactions and neural representations of others. Current projects include interpersonal manipulations of dehumanization, decoding of minimal and racial group information from EEG data, and tests of how perceptions of American demographics affect prejudice and conservatism.
Jenny is a PhD student in the CoPE lab at Brandeis University. Her research focuses on risk and buffering mechanisms for depression. More specifically, she studies the mechanisms by which social support processes can adaptively or maladaptively influence depression risk. Current projects address social support effects on individual coping strategies and stress perceptions and how processes that occur during social support interactions influence depression.
Wanbing Zhang is a second-year PhD student. She received a BS in Psychology from University of Minnesota Twin Cities under the guidance of Dr. Wilma Koutstaal. She is interested in developing prevention strategies for age-related memory loss, and ways to maintain the health of higher-order cognitive functions such as decision making and socioemotional judgment. Her current project looks at self-reference as a memory strategy to improve memory for older adults and aMCI patients. In her leisure time, she enjoys traveling, cooking, and cuddling her cat, Sugar.
Emily is a Master's student in the Knight Lab. Before coming to Brandeis, Emily received a BS in Psychology from Tufts University and worked for two years at Northeastern University's Center for Cognitive and Brain Health. She is interested in studying stigma, discrimination, and bias, specifically the effects of incarceration on individuals and society. Emily plans to examine clinician bias in the risk classification of sex offenders. Outside of research, she is a competitive ballroom and Latin dancer.
Ashley Gilliam is a first-year Master’s student. She received a B.S. degree in Psychological Sciences with a minor in Neuroscience and a B.A. in Anthropology from Western Kentucky University. She has worked extensively as part of an Anthropology lab and two Psychology labs, contributed to an ethnographic study supported by the National Park Service, and conducted two independent research projects concerning perceptions of Muslim populations during her undergraduate program. She received the National Anthropology Honor Society XLIV Senior Student Scholarship Award. She is particularly interested in culture, social cognition, memory, and perception. She intends to conduct thesis research concerning acculturation at Brandeis and, following this, to pursue a doctoral degree with a focus in Neuroanthropology.