University of Vermont

College of Arts and Sciences

Department of Psychological Science

Undergraduate Student Research Profiles: 2010

Derek Andrews

Derek Andrews "I started working with Professor William Falls during the summer of 2009 after successfully thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail the previous summer. Professor Falls' work on exercise and anxiety had particular salience as I had witnessed on the trail first hand the anxiolytic effects that daily exercise had, and thought it a very important topic for empirical research. With oversight from Professor Falls I conducted two replications of an experiment looking into possible mediating effects of amino acids, particularly lysine, in fear conditioning and anxiety formation. Working with Professor Falls and his team was an immensely positive experience that gave me valuable laboratory skills and appreciation for the value of animal research, and allowed me to further pursue my interests in psychology. Currently I have applied to work in the Mind Body Research Clinic at UVM to learn how to conduct fMRI research, and plan on attending a graduate Ph.D program in the fall of 2011."

Anne Brady

Anne Brady Annie has been working in Professor Dianna Murray-Close's Social Development Laboratory since the fall of 2008. Annie's honor's thesis examines the association between narcissistic personality traits and physical and relational aggression in children and adolescents. Annie has recently been awarded a UVM summer internship to examine these associations in girls at a nearby summer camp. In addition, Annie will be exploring whether the association between narcissistic traits and aggression differs for males and females in a school-based, short-term longitudinal study of children and adolescents. The results of these studies will provide important information regarding potential consequences of the increasing levels of narcissism documented in recent studies of youth in the United States.

Robert Brenna

Robert Brenna "I transferred to UVM my Junior year with a dual major in Psychology and History. I became inspired by social psychology after taking the introductory course with Professor Elizabeth Pinel. I started working in Professor Pinel's Seeing I Lab in January of 2010 as a research assistant. I became very interested in existential theories in particular, because they provide an enlightening window into the motivation behind social interactions of all kinds, ranging from two friends in the depths of a great late-night conversation to interactions fueled by intolerance and bigotry. I recently received an Undergraduate Research Endeavors Competitive Award (URECA) to run a study in Fall 2010 on shared subjective experience as it pertains to intergroup attitudes. I plan to attend graduate school after UVM. "

Zoe Chapman

Zoe Chapman "I worked as an undergraduate research assistant in Professor Kelly Rohan's Mood Disorders and Seasonality Laboratory for two years, conducting my own research in both my junior and senior years. My study related three elements of Roman Catholic mass attendance (perceived religious social support, motivation for mass attendance, and frequency of Sacramental Penance) to indicators of well-being, including symptoms of depression, positive affect, negative affect, and life satisfaction. My findings suggest that religious social support, especially from church leaders and congregation members, may play an important role in the well-being of Catholics. After graduation, I hope to continue to define my research interests and build upon the skill set I acquired while working with Professor Rohan."

Alexandra Hollman

Alexandra Hollman "I am a senior psychology major who has always been interested in working with and benefitting the lives of children. In Professor Rex Forehand's Raising Healthy Children Project, I have been given the opportunity to study in depth the transmission of depression from parent to child and how to stop this cycle. Working in this laboratory has helped me to develop my research and writing skills, in addition to contributing to a cause that I am very passionate about. Next year I am hoping to enter into a pre-medical post-baccalaureate program and eventually go to medical school. In the future, I hope to be a pediatric psychiatrist working in hospitals with sick children!"

Elizabeth McCallion

Elizabeth McCallion Elizabeth McCallion is a senior is the John Dewey Honors College with a double major in religion and psychology. She is currently in the process of finishing her thesis project titled "Reducing experiential avoidance with a group mindfulness-based intervention at a university counseling center." Under the supervision of Professor Lynne Bond, Elizabeth has explored the effectiveness of mindfulness intervention in comparison to an interpersonal control group with hopes of increasing mindfulness skills and reducing experiential avoidance: the tendency for anxious individuals to avoid their emotions, cognitions, and physical sensations. In addition to this work, Elizabeth has been a research assistant for nearly two years in the Anxiety & Health Research Laboratory under the supervision of Professor Michael Zvolensky on a project titled "Panic Disorder and Nicotine Withdrawal." Elizabeth plans on applying to graduate school to pursue a Ph.D in Clinical Psychology in order to continue her work on mindfulness and anxiety.

Christina Moore

Christina Moore "I first became interested in working in the Social Development Laboratory with Professor Dianna Murray-Close after taking the course in developmental psychology. Before coming to UVM, I did a lot of work with children and young adolescence, and have always been fascinated with the development of children, especially socially. After that course, I knew I wanted to learn more about the norms surrounding childrens' development. I plan to use my experience in the laboratory to write an honors thesis as well as a starting off point to continue onto graduate-level work in developmental psychology."

Justin Parent

Justin Parent Justin, a junior psychology major, received the Undergraduate Research Endeavors Competitive Award for the project "Evaluating the Specificity of Anxiety Sensitivity in regard to Anxiety and Worry about Bodily Sensations among Adults with HIV/AIDS". He is currently writing a paper examining the role of parental mindfulness as both a mediator and moderator of the relation between parent depressive symptoms and child internalizing symptoms. To do this, he is using baseline data from the Raising Healthy Children Project, a research study examining the effects of a cognitive behavioral prevention program for children of parents with a history of depression and their parents. Justin, recently accepted into the prestigious McNair Scholars Program, will be working on the Parenting The Strong-Willed Child project this summer with Professor Rex Forehand.

Undergraduate Student Research Profiles

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