Department News, Fall 2016

Message from the Chair
Department Spotlights
Department Announcements
Alumni Updates/Class Notes
Support the Department
Stay Connected

Message from the Chair

Chair, Carol Sigelman
Chair, Carol Sigelman

I’ll be brief, as the contents of this 2016 Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences newsletter speak more effectively than I ever could about the diverse and exciting ways in which our faculty and students are pursuing their love of psychology and strengthening our collective contribution to the University and society. We had a great year in 2015-2016: The clinical psychology program was reaccredited by APA, our expenditures of research funds from outside grants to 11 different faculty members totaled $2,376,948; we incorporated John Philbeck and Steve Mitroff into the cognitive neuroscience program last academic year and welcomed a new clinical psychology faculty member, Sarah Calabrese, this fall (see below); and we launched four new advanced lab/writing in the discipline courses and a new summer institute on the cognitive neuroscience of consciousness to enhance the undergraduate major.

We are proud of our community and its accomplishments and view all of you as an important part of that community. We also thank many of you—alumni, students and friends—for keeping in touch and supporting our efforts.

Happy Holidays!

Carol Sigleman

Chair, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences


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Department Spotlights


Sarah Calabrese and Lisa Bowleg
Two of the most recent returning members of the GW Psychological and Brain Sciences Department, Drs. Sarah Calabrese (left) and Lisa Bowleg (right).

A sign of a healthy and happy department is that former members find their way back. GW’s Psychological and Brain Sciences Department is proud that six of our current faculty members have returned to campus after leaving. Dr. Peg Barratt, MPhil ’78, was a GW graduate student; Drs. Sarah Calabrese, MPhil ’08, PhD ’12, Lisa Bowleg, MA ’91, PhD ’97, and Sarah Friedman, PhD ’75, all earned their PhDs in our department; and Drs. Tonya Dodge and John Philbeck are both in their second stints as GW faculty. Dr. Calabrese is our newest returning member, having just joined the faculty this year. 

What is the pull that brings so many people back? “Colleagues and community,” said Dr. Calabrese. “This was a unique opportunity for me to reconnect with some of the people I’ve learned the most from and worked best with, and to do so in a new capacity. Also, as an HIV researcher, I was motivated to contribute to the HIV prevention efforts in the local D.C. community, which is the community I’ve always considered to be home and a community disproportionately affected by HIV.” 

Dr. Philbeck’s return was largely driven by the environment in the department; he added, “It’s about as drama-free as an academic department can be! The kind of collegiality that the GW Psychological and Brain Sciences Department has is so rare, and it’s something that goes back years and years.” 

Dr. Barratt’s return was both personal and professional; her first child was born at the old GW Hospital while she was a student, and he now lives in D.C. Dr. Barratt came back to GW as dean of Columbian College of Arts and Sciences to help build a stronger GW for both undergraduate and graduate students. She was also largely pulled back by the students. “GW students are smart and engaged—they work hard to relate their psychology courses to their worlds,” said Dr. Barratt. 

Dr. Dodge was attracted back by the department and university’s focus on both teaching and research. She stated, "The environment pushes me to become a well-rounded academic. I cannot focus on a single aspect, for example, teaching only or research only. I am challenged to ignite passion in my students while also conducting meaningful research that will advance the field." 

Dr. Bowleg cited three reasons for her return. “First, I had very fond memories of the engaging and supportive faculty—two of my (now) colleagues were dissertation committee members, and another was an independent study mentor. Second, the excellent doctoral training I received here helped launch me into a successful career as a social psychologist. The third lure, given my work as an HIV prevention researcher, was the DC-Center for AIDS Research (DC-CFAR). The DC-CFAR, which is housed at GW, provides HIV prevention researchers with a wealth of resources and opportunities for collaboration, and mentorship.” 

Dr. Friedman was drawn back by several factors, but perhaps the most important was an invitation from Dr. Barratt, the then-dean of the Columbian College. She also stated she was influenced by her “wish to continue a research collaboration with Drs. Sigelman and Rohrbeck on the topic of military families and their children.” In addition, she was looking forward to giving back to GW by mentoring students.

We are lucky to have all of them back home here at GW!


Group photo of Psi Chi members
Psi Chi newest members along with faculty advisor, Dr. Dennis Schell

Psi Chi newest members along with faculty advisor, Dr. Dennis Schell

Psi Chi President Mali Zaken and Faculty Advisor Dennis Schell report that Psi Chi at GW is flourishing. Psi Chi provides students with the resources necessary to obtain psychology-related information, create professional networks and learn about career opportunities. Psi Chi has become a community for its members, who all share a passion for psychology. Four exciting events took place this fall:

October 19th: Graduate School Night for students planning to go on to graduate school in psychology

October 27th: Declaration Day, during which Psi Chi provided peer advising for students who want to declare psychology as a major or minor 

November 13th: Fall induction of new members

November 15th: Interview Skills Workshop for students who are planning to interview for graduate school or employment in the field

And, of course, we have a great line-up for the spring semester.


three students study together at a table
Hands-on learning in cognitive neuroscience

Hands-on learning in cognitive neuroscience

What is consciousness and how does it arise in the brain? Students pondered this question as members of the department’s first Summer Institute in Cognitive Neuroscience. The institute explored the role of brain rhythms in states of awareness, drugs as windows into the mind and the foundations of the self in memory and bodily awareness. The curriculum included classroom-based courses, a research practicum, a field trip to an imaging lab and guest lectures by cutting-edge workers in the field. The faculty and graduate student instructors worked with the 11 students to actively adapt the curriculum and activities to match the students’ interests in cognitive neuroscience, medicine and clinical psychology. The department thanks Associate Professor Stephen Dopkins for his great work in leading this exciting new opportunity for our undergraduate students!


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Department Announcements


  • Participation in a new $150 million multi-institutional grant from NIH: Professor Jody Ganiban and colleagues at University of Oregon and Penn State will participate in a major $150 million dollar, multi-year, multi-site project aimed at understanding early environmental influences on children’s health and health disparities. Click here to read more.
  • New funding from the U.S. Army Research Office: Associate Professor Stephen Mitroff was awarded a grant to explore individual differences in visual search and how big data can be used to understand learning in visual search.
  • New funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH): Professors Maria Cecilia Zea (PI) and Paul Poppen were awarded a three-year grant to develop a webnovela (Internet-based serial drama) that will promote HIV prevention among gay and bisexual men in Colombia. Click here for more information. 
  • New funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF): Associate Professor Sarah Shomstein obtained funding to support undergraduate students’ involvement in a visual attention project through NSF’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates program.
  • New funding from the District of Columbia Center for AIDS Research: Professor Sherry Molock was awarded pilot funding for research aimed at increasing HIV testing among African American youth in black churches. For more information, click here.
  • New funding from GW’s University Facilitating Fund: Professor Sherry Molock also obtained intramural funding for research on HIV risk and suicidality among young gay and bisexual men in the black community.
  • Named fellow of the Association for Psychological Science (APS): Professor Maria Cecilia Zea was awarded fellow status by APS. This prestigious status is awarded for sustained outstanding contributions to the science of psychology in the areas of research, teaching and/or service. Department Chair Carol Sigelman also shares this status.
  • New funding from GWs Cross-Disciplinary Research Fund: Associate Professor Stephen Mitroff received an internal Cross-Disciplinary Research Fund grant from the Office of the Vice President of Research to work with Dr. Rachel Brem from the Department of Radiology. The project is focused on using cognitive psychology techniques to help understand the benefits and drawbacks of new approaches used for cancer screenings. 
  • New funding from GW’s Cross-Disciplinary Research Fund: Professor John Philbeck received intramural funding to develop and evaluate a virtual reality system that will train healthcare providers to perform intubation on newborns needing respiratory support. In addition to providing trainees with a virtual view of the surgical equipment inside the training manikin, the system will monitor the motions of trainees as they practice the procedure and provide automated feedback.
  • Welcome (back) to our latest faculty addition: Sarah Calabrese, who completed her PhD in GW’s clinical psychology program, returned to join the faculty as an assistant professor this fall. After spending four years as a postdoctoral fellow and associate research scientist at Yale University, she is back and brought with her a Mentored Research Scientist Development Award (K01) from the National Institutes of Health, entitled Intervention to Promote PrEP Awareness and Equitable Prescription Among Providers. 
  • Featured story in the National Science Foundation (NSF) blog: Associate Professor Sarah Shomstein’s work on attentional shifting as applied to distracted driving was highlighted in the NSF blog.
  • Inaugural Director of Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders Institute: Professor of Pharmacology and Physiology Kevin Pelphrey, who also has a secondary appointment in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences, has been selected as the inaugural director of the university’s Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders Institute and will be appointed as the Carbonell Family Professor in Autism and Neurodevelopmental Disorders.


  • Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellowship: Clinical Psychology PhD Candidate Farzana Saleem received this prestigious award, administered by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to support diversity in higher education.
  • Presidential Management Fellowship: Courtney Wallin, graduate of the Cognitive Neuroscience program, is now a special assistant to the director of the Office of Research on Women’s Health with the NIH Office of the Director, Bethesda, Md. This position was secured through the Presidential Management Fellowship training program.
  • 1st Prize Research Poster: Students Everly Jazi and Emily Leival, mentored by Research Professor Sarah Friedman, were awarded top accolades in the category of Society, Media, and Education for their poster presentation on military families at GW Research Days.
  • American Psychological Association Service: Clinical Psychology PhD Candidate Farzana Saleem served on the Committee for the Advancement of Racial and Ethnic Diversity, an organization dedicated to encouraging diversity among psychologists and supporting culturally relevant psychological science and practice.
  • GW Research Days and the Psychological and Brain Sciences Department’s Poster Day a Resounding Success: There was a full turnout from the department for both events, which brought together members of all three programs to share their work with each other and the larger GW community.

  • Undergraduate Fellowship Awards: This past academic year, five undergraduate GW students mentored by faculty in our department received a GW fellowship to support their research efforts. We are very proud of these students’ great achievements!

Undergraduate Researcher

Faculty Advisor


Fellowship Title

Emily Alexander

Carol Sigelman

GW Undergraduate Research Award

Raising the bar: Normalization of heavy drinking behaviors in college students

Michael Scanlon

Lawrence Rothblat

GW Undergraduate Research Award

Cognitive and Social Disabilities in the 22q11DS mouse model of ASD

Emily Bragg

(Speech & Hearing)

Guangying Wu

Luther Rice Fellowship

Impact of early social interaction and aging on mouse vocalization

Klarissa Garcia Orellana

Mimi Le

Luther Rice Fellowship

Postpartum OCD: Perspectives from mothers, health professionals, and policy makers

Abby Lieberman

Michelle Stock

Luther Rice Fellowship

Exploring the role of intersectionality: The effects of perceived racial and gender discrimination on risky sex and substance use

Posters presented at GW Research Days  (*) and the Psychological and Brain Sciences Department’s Poster Day (+)

  • Alexander, E., & Sigelman, C. (2016, March). The normalization of college drinking behaviors: How social context affects person perceptions.*+ 
  • Butler, N., Goonewardena, A., Beekman, J.B., & Stock, M.L. Self-compassion and self-esteem buffer the effects of social rejection on negative affect and restrictive eating.*+ 
  • Chaturvedi, S., Wallace, G., & Zucker, N. Greater autistic traits are associated with alcohol avoidance.+
  • Chu, K., Covey, R., Lee, J. Effects of racial microaggressions on Asian American health behaviors.+
  • Garcia, K., Huynh-Nhu (Mimi) Le, H. N., & Stone, K. Prevalence and help-seeking behaviors among women at risk for postpartum OCD.*
  • Jazi, E.S., Leival, E.K., Friedman, S.L., Sigelman, C.K., & Rohrbeck, C.A. Factors associated with the quantity and quality of distance communication between deployed parents and their children.*+
  • Lieberman, A., Beekman, J.B., & Stock, M.L. The causal effects of racial and gender discrimination on negative affect, alcohol use and risky sex cognitions among Black women.*+ 
  • Mack, R., & Gee, C. Coparenting, child gender, and child adjustment among children of African American and Latina adolescent mothers.+
  • Molloy, B.K., Guresh, M.A., Stock, M.L. Information avoidance moderates the effect of UV photography on sun protection cognitions among young adults.+
  • Montero, V., Hofstadter, M., & Katona, A. Weight discrimination: Does gender matter?+
  • Moore, C., Sweeny, M., Rohrbeck, C., & Shamlou, A. Preparing for disasters: The relationship between self-efficacy and distress.*
  • Sirijuntanan, P.E., Poblete, A.T., Younis, S., Khera, G., & Gee, C.B. South Asian international students’ professional help-seeking attitudes: Correlations between perceived barriers, stigma, and loss of face concern.+
  • Scanlon, M., & Rothblat, L. Cognitive disabilities and 22q11DS mouse model of ASD.*
  • Scotti, P., Malcolm, G.L., & Shomstein, S. Reality vs. simplicity: The effects of real-world objects on attentional selection.+ 
  • Sirijuntanan, P., Younus, S., Poblete, A.T., Khera, G., Gee, C. B. South Asian international students’ professional help-seeking attitudes.*
  • Talisman, N.W., & Rohrbeck, C.A. Psychometric properties of the emergency preparedness checklist.+
  • White, D., Prakash, A., Cimporescu, M., Broudy, R. Mental health in diverse populations and the importance of individualized care.*+


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GW’s psychology faculty, postdocs and students were as productive as ever this year  Here is a list of their 2015-2016 publications:

Faculty/Lab Publications:


Publication Title


Name of Journal or Book


“What does it take to be a man? What is a real man?”:  Ideologies of masculinity and HIV sexual risk among Black heterosexual men

Bowleg, L.

Culture, Health and Sexuality: An Introduction


Responsible men, blameworthy women: Black heterosexual men’s discursive constructions of safer sex and masculinity

Bowleg, L., Heckert, A.L., Brown, T.L. & Massie, J.S.

Health Psychology


The final frontier — Transitions and sustainability: From mentored to independence

Zea, M.C. & Bowleg, L.

AIDS & Behavior


Measuring the pros and cons of what it means to be a Black man: Development and validation of the Black Men’s Experiences Scale (BMES)

Bowleg, L., English, D., del Rio-Gonzalez, A. M., Teti, M.,

Psychology of Men & Masculinity


"Intersectionality revisited: Moving beyond the contours of race, class, gender" – Notes on an intersectionality symposium.

Nakhid, C., Majavu, A., Bowleg, L., Mooney, S.,

New Zealand Sociology


Expanding thinking through a kaleidoscopic look into the future: Implications of the Mixed Methods International Research Association’s Task Force Report on the Future of Mixed Methods.

Mertens, D. M., Bazeley, P., Bowleg, L., Fielding, N.,

Journal of Mixed Methods Research


Parent-based interventions: implications for doping prevention

Dodge, T.

The Psychology of Doping in Sport


Influence of parent–adolescent communication about anabolic steroids on adolescent athletes’ willingness to try performance-enhancing substances 

Dodge, T. & Clarke, P.

Substance Use & Misuse


Consumers' perceptions of the dietary supplement health and education act: implications and recommendations

Dodge, T.

Drug Testing and Analysis


Getting completely turned around: How disorientation impacts subjective straight ahead

Kramer, B.A., Philbeck, J.W., Dopkins, S., Hoyer, D.,

Memory & Cognition


Dimensional interaction in distance judgment

Dopkins, S., & Hoyer, D.



Aging and the effects of exploratory behavior on spatial memory

Varner, K., M., Dopkins, S. C., & Philbeck, J.

International Journal of Aging and Human


Association between dietary patterns during pregnancy and birth size measures in a diverse population in Southern U.S.

Colon-Ramos, U., Racette S.B., Ganiban, J., Nguyen, T.



Angry responses to infant challenges: parent, marital and child genetic factors associated with harsh parenting

Hajal, N., Neiderhiser, J.M., Moore, G., Leve, L.D., Shaw,

Child Development


Parental criticism as an environmental influence on adolescent somatic symptoms

Horwitz, B.N., Marceau, K., Narusyte, J., Ganiban, J.M.,

Journal of Family Psychology


Parental knowledge as an environmental influence on adolescent externalizing

Marceau, K., Narusyte, J., Lichtenstein, P., Ganiban, J.

Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry


The development of early profiles of temperament: Characterization, continuity, and etiology

Beekman, C., Neiderhiser, J.M., Buss, K., Loken, E.,

Child Development


Expectant mothers maximizing opportunities: Maternal characteristics moderate multifactorial prenatal stress in the prediction of birth weight in a sample of children adopted at birth

Brotnow, L., Reiss, D., Stover, C.S., Ganiban, J.,



The intergenerational transmission of anxiety: A children-of-twins study

Eley, T. C., McAdams, T. A., Rijsdijk, F. V., Lichtenstein,

American Journal of Psychiatry


Child-evoked maternal negativity from 9 to 27 months: An early expression of genes linked to adult psychopathology

Fearon, P., Reiss, D., Leve, L.D., Shaw, D.S.,

Development and Psychopathology


Understanding the role of mate selection processes in couples' pair-bonding behavior

Horwitz, B.N., Reynolds, C.A., Walum, H, Ganiban, J.,

Behavior Genetics


Infant avoidance during a tactile task predicts autism spectrum behaviors in toddlerhood

Mammen M.A.;  Moore G.A.;  Scaramella LV;  Reiss D.; 

Infant Mental Health Journal


The Perinatal Risk Index: Early risks experienced by domestic adoptees in the United States

Marceau, K., De Araujo-Greecher, M., Miller, E.S.,



Adolescent age moderates genetic and environmental influences on parent-adolescent positivity and negativity: Implications for genotype-environment correlation

Marceau, K., Knopik, V.S., Neiderhiser, J.M.,

Development & Psychopathology


Maternal personal traits associated with patterns of prenatal smoking and exposure: Implications for etiologic and prevention research

Massey, S.H., Reiss, D., Neiderhiser, J.M., Leve, L.D.,

Neurotoxicology & Teratology


The relationship between parental depressive symptoms and offspring psychopathology: Evidence from a children-of-twins study and an adoption study

McAdams, T., Rijsdijk, F., Neiderhiser, J.M., Narusyte,

Psychological Medicine


Estimating the roles of genetic risk, perinatal risk, and marital hostility on early childhood adjustment: Medical records and self-reports

Neiderhiser,  J.M.,  Marceau, K.,  De Araujo-Greecher, M.

Behavior Genetics


Coercion, power, and control in interdependent relationships: A dynamic systems perspective.


The Oxford Handbook of Coercive Relationship Dynamics


Evaluating differential effects using regression interactions and regression mixture models

Van Horn, M., Jaki, T., Masyn, K., Howe, G. W.,

Educational and Psychological Measurement


Testing moderation in network meta-analysis with individual participant data

Dagne, G. A., Brown, C. H., Howe, G. W., Kellam, S. G.,

Statistics in Medicine


The influence of the racial/ethnic match of interviewer and respondent on the measurement of couples relationship quality and emotional functioning

Hornberger, A. P., Medley-Proctor, K., Nettles, C. D.,

Couple and Family Psychology: Research and Practice


Changes in cognitive complexity of work predict changes in internalizing symptoms after a period of unemployment.

Monfort, S. S., Howe, G. W., Nettles, C. D., Pitcheralle, S.,

Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 20, 50-


Standards of evidence for efficacy, effectiveness, and scale-up research in prevention science: Next generation

Gottfredson, D. A., Cook, T. D., Gardner, F. E. M.,

Prevention Science


Impact of an equality constraint on the class-specific residual variances in regression mixtures: A Monte Carlo simulation study

Kim, M., Lamont, A. E, Jaki, T., Feaster, D., Howe, G.W.,

Behavioral Research Methods


reducing internalizing symptoms among high-risk, Hispanic adolescents: Mediators of a family intervention

Perrino, T., Brincks, A., Pantin, H., Howe, G. W.,

Prevention Science


Translating genetic research into prevention and treatment: The baseline target moderated mediator design

Howe, G. W., Beach, R. H., Brody, G. H., & Wyman, P. A.

Frontiers in Psychology


Influence of lexical status, orthographic similarity, and semantics on the multi-voxel response of the Visual Word Form Area

Baeck A, Kravitz DJ, Baker CI, Op de Beeck H



Evaluating the correspondence between face-, scene-, and object-selectivitity and retinotopic organization within lateral occipitotemporal cortex

Silson, EH., Groen, IIA., Kravitz DJ., Baker CI.

Journal of Vision


A retinotopic basis for the division of category-selectivity into lateral and ventral regions: Evidence from scene processing

Silson EH., Chan AW-Y., Reynolds R., Kravitz DJ.,

Journal of Neuroscience


Differences in looking at own- and other-race faces are subtle and analysis-dependent: An account of discrepant records

Arizpe J., Kravitz DJ., Walsh V., Yovel G., Baker CI.

PLoS One


Substance use


Handbook of Mental Health in African American Youth


Adolescent language brokering in diverse contexts: Associations with parenting and parent-child relationships in a new immigrant destination area

Roche, K. M., Lambert, S. F., Ghazarian, S. R., & Little, T.

Journal of Youth and Adolescence


The protective role of maternal racial socialization for African American adolescents exposed to community violence

Henry, J. S., Lambert, S. F., & Smith Bynum, M.

Journal of Family Psychology


 Mother–adolescent relationship quality as a moderator of associations between racial socialization and adolescent psychological adjustment

Lambert, S. F., Roche, K. M., Saleem, F. T., & Henry, J.

 American Journal of Orthopsychiatry


Poor CD4 count is a predictor of untreated depression in human immunodeficiency virus-positive African-Americans

Amanor-Boadu, S., Hipolito, M. S., Rai, N., McLean, C. K.,

World Journal of Psychiatry


Culturally sensitive approaches to identification and treatment of depression among HIV infected African American adults: A qualitative study of primary care providers’ perspectives

Le, H., Hipolito, M. M. S., Lambert, S., Terrell-

Journal of Depression and Anxiety


Differential effects of racial socialization messages for African American adolescents: Personal versus institutional racial discrimination

Saleem, F. T., & Lambert, S. F.

Journal of Child and Family Studies


The impact of African American parents’ racial discrimination experiences and perceived neighborhood cohesion on their racial socialization practices

Saleem, F. T., English, D., Busby, D. R., Lambert, S.

Journal of Youth and Adolescence


Longitudinal pathways to educational attainment for youth in Mexican and Central American immigrant families.

Roche, K. M., Calzada, E. J., Ghazarian, S. R., Little, T. D.,

Journal of Latina/o Psychology


Depression prevention and treatment interventions: The evolution of the Latino Mental Health Research Program


Case Documentation in Counseling and Psychotherapy: A Theory-Informed, Competency-Based Approach


Preventing perinatal depression in high risk women: Moving the Mothers and Babies Course from clinical trials to community implementation

Le, H. N., Perry, D. F., Mendelson, T., Tandon, S.

Maternal and Child Health Journal


Policy and practice: Integrating perinatal depression screening into WIC at a federally qualified health center

Perry, D. F., Le, H. N., Villamil, C., Yengo, J., &

Progress in Community Health Partnerships


Associations between Acculturation and acculturative stress and maternal health in pregnant Latina immigrants

Neway, B., Perry, D. F., Le, H. N., & Joseph, H.

Georgetown University Journal of Health Sciences


Culturally sensitive approaches to identification and treatment of depression among HIV infected African American adults: A Qualitative study of primary care providers’ perspectives

Le, H. N., Hipolito, M. M. S., Lambert, S., Terrell-

Journal of Depression and Anxiety


Poor CD4 count is a predictor of untreated depression in human immunodeficiency virus-positive African-Americans

Amanor-Boadu, S., Hipolito, M. M. S., Rai, N., McLean, C.

World Journal of Psychiatry


Perception and human information processing in visual search

Mitroff, S.

Cambridge University Handbook on Applied Perception Research


Targets need their own space: Effects of clutter on multiple-target visual search

Adamo, S. H., Cain, M. S., & Mitroff, S. R.



Cognitive training can reduce civilian casualties in a simulated shooting environment

Biggs, A. T., Cain, M. S., Mitroff, S. R.

Psychological Science


Mo’ money, mo’ problems: Monetary motivation can exacerbate the attentional blink

Biggs, A. T., Adamo, S. H., & Mitroff, S. R.



Improvement in visual search with practice: Mapping learning-related changes in neurocognitive stages of processing

Clark, K., Appelbaum, L. G., van de berg, B., Mitroff, S.

Journal of Neuroscience


Attentional guidance by working memory differs by paradigm: An individual-differences approach

Dowd, E. W., Kiyonaga, A., Egner, T., & Mitroff, S. R.

Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics


Mapping the structure of perceptual and visual-motor abilities in healthy young adults

Wang, L., Krasich, K., Bel-Bahar, T., Hughes, L.,

Acta Psychologica


Examining perceptual and conceptual set biases in multiple-target visual search

Biggs, A. T., Adamo, S. H., Dowd, E. W., & Mitroff, S. R.

Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics


What can 1 billion trials tell us about visual search?

Mitroff, S. R., Biggs, A. T., Adamo, S. H., Dowd, E. W.,

Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human


Multiple-target visual search errors: Overview and implications for airport security

Mitroff, S. R., Biggs, A. T., & Cain, M. S.

Policy Insights from the Behavioral and Brain


Sensorimotor learning in a computerized athletic training battery

Krasich, K., Ramger, B., Holton, L., Wang, L., Mitroff,

Journal of Motor Behavior


Fear generalization gradients in visuospatial attention

Dowd, E. W., Mitroff, S. R., & LaBar, K. S.



Action-specific influences on perception and postperceptual processes: Present controversies and future directions.

Philbeck JW, Witt JK

Psychological Bulletin


Getting completely turned around: How disorientation impacts subjective straight ahead

Kramer BA, Philbeck JW, Dopkins S, Hoyer D, Sargent

Memory & Cognition


Tachistoscopic illumination and masking of real scenes

Chichka D, Philbeck JW, Gajewski DA

Behavior Research Methods


Aging and the effects of exploratory behavior on spatial memory

Varner KM, Dopkins S, Philbeck JW

International Journal Of Aging & Human


The effects of age and set size on the fast extraction of egocentric distance

Gajewski, D., Wallin, C, & Philbeck, J.

Visual Cognition


HIV prevalence and awareness of serostatus among MSM in Bogotá, Colombia

Zea, M.C., Reisen, C.A., del Río González, A.M., Bianchi,

American Journal of Public Health 


Greater Depressive symptoms and Higher Viral Load are Associated with Poor Physical function among Latino Men Living with HIV 

Nieves-Lugo, Kaaren, del Rio-Gonzalez, Ana Maria,

Journal of the International Association of Providers of AIDS Care


Gender Affirmation and Body Modification among Transgender Persons in Bogotá, Colombia

Aguayo-Romero, Rodrigo, A., Reisen, C.A., Zea, M.C.,

International Journal of Transgenderism


Modeling a model: Mouse genetics, 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome, and disorders of cortical circuit development

Meechan, D.W, Maynard, T.M., Fernandez, A., Karpinski,

 Progress in Neurobiology


Object-based attention in real-world scenes

Malcolm, G. & Shomstein, S.

Journal of Experimental Psychology


Spatial and non-spatial aspects of visual attention: Interactive cognitive mechanisms and neural underpinnings

Shomstein, S. & Gottlieb, J.



Retinotopic information interacts with category selectivity in human ventral cortex




Cross-cultural differences in consistent mapping effects of targets and distractors

Donghoon Lee; Hyun Jung Shin, Rebecca B. Weldon;

Journal of Cross Cultural Psychology


Social exclusion and substance use cognitions and behaviors


Addictions: A Social Psychological Perspective


The Prototype/Willingness Model


Addictions: A Social Psychological Perspective


The relationship between young adult smokers' beliefs about nicotine addiction and smoking-related affect and cognitions

Waters, E.A., Janssen, E., Kaufman, A.R., Peterson, L.

Journal of Cancer Education


Predicting avoidance of skin damage risk information among college students

Walsh, L. A., Shepperd, J., & Stock, M.L.

Annals of Behavioral Medicine


The impact of African American parents' racial discrimination experiences and perceived neighborhood cohesion on their racial socialization practices

Saleem, F.T., English, D., Busby, D.R., Lambert, S.A.,

Journal of Youth and Adolescence


Need to belong, not rejection sensitivity, moderates cortisol response, self-reported stress, and negative affect following social exclusion

Beekman, J.B., Stock, M.L., & Marcus, T.

The Journal of Social Psychology,  156, 131-138.


It only takes once: The absent-exempt heuristic and reactions to comparison-based sexual risk information

Stock, M.L., Gibbons, F.X., Beekman, J.B., & Gerrard, M.

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 109, 39-


Cc2d1a loss of function disrupts functional and morphological development in forebrain neurons leading to cognitive and social deficits

Oaks AW, Zamarbide M, Tambunan DE, Santini E, Di

Cerebral Cortex


HIV prevalence and awareness of serostatus among MSM in Bogotá, Colombia 

Zea, M.C., Reisen, C.A., del Río-González, A.M., Bianchi,

American Journal of Public Health


Gender affirmation and body modification among transgender persons in Bogotá, Colombia

Aguayo-Romero, R.A., Reisen, C.A., Zea, M.C.,

International Journal of Transgenderism


Greater Depressive Symptoms and Higher Viral Load Are Associated with Poor Physical Function among Latino Men Living with HIV

Nieves-Lugo, K., del Río-González, A. M., Reisen, C.

Journal of the International Association of Providers of


The final frontier - transitions and sustainability: from mentored to independent research.

Zea, M.C. & Bowleg, L.

AIDS & Behavior


Student Publications:  Most student publications are captured in the above table, but a comprehensive list of graduate students’ 2015-2016 publications appears below:

  • Agénor, M., Peitzmeier, S.M., Bernstein, I., McDowell, M., Alizaga, N.M., Reisner, S.L., Pardee, D.J., & Potter, J. (in press). Perceptions of human papillomavirus and cervical cancer risk and prevention among transmasculine individuals: patient and provider perspectives. Culture, Health, and Sexuality.
  • Aguayo-Romero, R.A., Alizaga, N.M., & Glickman, C. (2016, April). The dynamics of intersectionality and gender affirmation on HIV risk among transgender IPV survivorsPsychology and AIDS Exchange Newsletter
  • Aguayo-Romero, R.A., Reisen, C.A., Zea, M.C., Bianchi, F., & Poppen, P.J. (2015). Gender affirmation and body modification among transgender persons in Bogotá, Colombia. International Journal of Transgenderism, 16(2), 103-15. doi:10.1080/15532739.2015.1075930
  • Bay-Cheng, L., Fitz, C.C., Alizaga, N.M., & Zucker, A.N. (2015). Tracking Homo Oeconomicus: Development of the Neoliberal Beliefs Inventory. Journal of Social and Political Psychology, 3(1), 71-88.
  • Beekman, J. B., Ferrer, R., Klein, W. M., & Persky, S. (2016) Effects of perceived weight discrimination on willingness to adopt unhealthy behaviors: Moderating role of genomic information. Psychology & Health, 31(3), 334‐348.
  • Beekman, J.B., Stock, M. L., & Marcus, T. (in press). Need to belong, not rejection sensitivity, moderates cortisol response, self‐reported stress, and negative affect following social exclusion. The Journal of Social Psychology. Online first.
  • Berman, A., García, J., Saleem, F. T., Sundaram, S., Zelaya, D. (September, 2015). Living in the shadows: Undocumented people and the emerging role of psychologist. Communique.
  • Bowleg, L., English, D., Del Rio Gonzalez, A.M., Tschann, J., Burkholder, G.J. (2016). Measuring the pros and cons of what it means to be a Black man: Development and validation of the Black Men’s Experiences Scale (BMES). Psychology of Men & Masculinity. No pagination specified. doi:10.1037/men0000026
  • Bynum, M.S., Davis, B., Franco, M., Anderson, R.E., & English, D. (2016). Observed racial socialization and maternal warmth in African American mother-adolescent dyadic discussions about racial discrimination. Child Development. No pagination specified. doi:10.1111/cdev.12562
  • Connolly Gibbons, M. B., Kurtz, J. E., Thompson, D. L., Mack, R. A., Lee, J. K., Rothbard, A., ... & Crits-Christoph, P. (2015). The effectiveness of clinician feedback in the treatment of depression in the community mental health system. Journal of Consulting and Clinical psychology, 83(4), 748.
  • Dass-Brailsford, P., Thomley, R., Talisman, N., & Unverferth, K. (2015). Psychological effects of the 2010 Haitian earthquake on children: An exploratory study, Traumatology, 21, 14-21. 
  • Dodge, T. & Clarke, P. (2015). Influence of parent-adolescent communication about anabolic steroids on adolescent athletes’ willingness to try performance-enhancing substances. Substance Use & Misuse, 50, 1307-1315. 
  • Dodge, T., Clarke, P., & Dwan, R. (in press). The relationship between physical activity and alcohol use among adults in the United States: A systematic review of the literature. American Journal of Health Promotion.
  • Dodge, T., Clarke, P., & Renninger, S. (2015). Parent-based prevention programs: What are the implications for doping prevention. In V. Barkoukis, L., Lazarus, & H. Tsorbatzoudis (Eds.), The Psychology of Doping in Sports (pp. 199-214). New York: Routledge. 
  • Dodge, T., Clarke, P., & Renninger, S. (2016) Parent-Based Prevention Programs: What are the Implications for Doping Prevention. In Barkoukis, V., Lazuras, L., & Tsorbatzoudis, H (1stEd.), The Psychology of Doping in Sport. 199-214, New York: Routledge.
  • Dopkins, C. S., Hoyer, L. D. (2015). Dimensional Interaction in Distance Judgment. Perception, 44, 490-510. doi:10.1068/p7723 
  • Douglass, S., Jeswani, S., English, D., & Yip, T. (2016). “They were just making jokes”: Racial/ethnic discrimination in adolescent friend groups. Cultural Diversity & Ethnic Minority Psychology. 22(1), 69-82. doi:10.1037/cdp0000041
  • English, D., Lambert, S.F., & Ialongo, N.S. (In press). Adding to the education debt: Depressive symptoms mediate the association between experienced racial discrimination and academic achievement in African Americans. Journal of School Psychology.
  • Gajewski, D. A., Wallin, C.P., & Philbeck, J.W. (2015). Age, visual working memory load, and the fast extraction of distance. Visual Cognition, 23 (8), 957-988.doi:10.1080/13506285.2015.1132803
  • Harrison, A. J. (2015, November). Black males don’t cry. American Psychological Association Public Interest Newsletter
  • Hornberger, A., Medley-Proctor, K., Cimporescu, M. A., & Howe, G. W. (2016). The influence of racial/ethnic match of interviewer and respondent on the measurement of couples relationship quality and emotional functioning. Couple and Family Psychology: Research and Practice, 5(1), 12-26. doi: 10.1037/cfp0000053
  • Howe, G. W., Weihs, K. L., Cimporescu, M. A., Seltzer, R., Niederhiser, J., & Moreno, F. (Accepted). Combining stress exposure and stress generation: Does neuroticism alter the dynamic interplay of stress, depression, and anxiety following job loss. Journal of Personality. doi: 10.1111/jopy.12260
  • Howe, G., & Mlynarski, L. (2015). Power and Control in Interdependent Relationships: A Dynamic Systems Perspective. In The Oxford Handbook of Coercive Relationship Dynamics.
  • Kaltman, S., Serrano, A., Talisman, N., Cabassa, L., Magee, M., Pulgar-Vidal, O., & Peraza, D. (2016) Type 2 diabetes and depression: A pilot trial of an integrated self-management intervention for Latino immigrants, The Diabetes Educator, 43, ePub ahead of print. 
  • Kaltman, S., Talisman, N., Serrano, A., Cabassa, L., Magee, M., Pulgar-Vidal, O., Peraza, D., & Cohen, N. (2015). Type 2 diabetes and depression: Patient, family member, and primary care provider perspectives on the development of an integrated self-management intervention, The Diabetes Educator, 41, 763-772 
  • Kaltman, S., WinklerPrins, V., Serrano, A., & Talisman, N. (2015). Enhanced motivational interviewing training in a family medicine clerkship, Teaching and Learning in Medicine, 27, 80-84. 
  • Kramer, A. B., Philbeck, W. J., Dopkins, C. S., Hoyer, L. D., Sargent, Q. J., & Perry, M. J. (2015). Getting Completely Turned Around: How Disorientation Impacts Subjective Straight Ahead. Memory and Cognition, 43(1), 143-150. doi:10.3758/s13421-014-0457-3
  • Lambert, S. F., Roche, K. M., Saleem, F. T., & Henry, J. S. (2015). Mother-adolescent relationship quality as a moderator of associations between racial socialization and adolescent psychological adjustment. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 85(5), 409-420. doi:10.1037/ort0000085
  • McKinnon, K., Elkington, K., Cournos, F., Pinho, V., Guimaraes, M., & Wainberg, M. (2016). People with serious mental illness. In E. R. Wright & N. Carnes (Eds.), Understanding the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the United States: The role of syndemics in the production of health disparities. Springer.
  • Meechan, D.W., Rutz, H.L.H., Fralish, M.S., Maynard, T.M., Rothblat, L.A., & LaMantia, A.-S. (2015). Cognitive ability is associated with altered medial frontal cortical circuitry in the LgDel mouse model of 22Q11DS. Cerebral Cortex, 25, 1143-51.
  • Phillips, L.A., Cohen, H., Burns, E., Abrams, J. & Renninger, S. (Accepted). Self-Management of Chronic Illness: The role of ‘Habit’ vs Reflective Factors in Exercise and Medication Adherence. Journal of Behavioral Medicine.
  • Potter, J., Peitzmeier, S.M., Bernstein, I., Reisner, S.L., Alizaga, N.M., & Agénor, M., & Pardee, D.J. (2015). Cervical cancer screening for patients on the female-to-male spectrum: A guide for clinicians. Journal of General Internal Medicine, 30(12), 1857-1864.
  • Saleem, F. T., & Lambert, S. F. (2016). Differential effects of racial socialization messages for personal versus institutional racial discrimination for African American adolescents. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 25(5), 1385-1396. doi: 10.1007/s10826-015-0326-0
  • Saleem, F.T.English, D., Lambert, S.F., Busby, D.R., Harrison, A., Stock, M.L., Gibbons, F.X. (2016). The Impact of African American parents’ racial discrimination experiences and perceived neighborhood cohesion on their racial socialization practices. Journal of Youth and Adolescence. No pagination specified. doi:10.1007/s10964-016-0499-x
  • Saunders, P., Ruth, J., Latella, L., Talisman, N. (2016) Communicative Coping Behavior Checklist: Observations of persons with dementia in the home environment, The Gerontologist, ePub ahead of print
  • Stock, M. L., Gibbons, F. X., Beekman, J. B. & Gerrard, M. (2015). Social comparison processes, absent‐exempt biases, and STD‐risk cognitions: The negative consequences of comparisons with lower-risk, but “infected” peers. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 109, 39‐52.
  • Stock, M.L., Gibbons, F.X., & Beekman, J. B. (2015). Social exclusion and substance use cognitions and behaviors. In C. Kopetz & C. Lejuez (Eds.), Frontiers in Social Psychology: Addiction, pp. 76‐97.
  • Talisman, N., Harazduk, N., Rush, C., Graves, K., & Haramati, A. (2015). Mindful practice, empathy preservation, and self-care: The impact of mind-body medicine facilitation on professional identity, Academic Medicine, 90, 780-784. 
  • Talisman, N., Kaltman, S., Davis, K., Sidel, S., Akil, M., Alter, C. (2015). Case management: A new approach, Psychiatric Annals, 45, 134-138.
  • Wainberg, M. L., Cournos, F., Wall, M., Mann, C., Pala, A. N., Pinto, D., Pinho, V., & McKinnon, M. (2016). Mental illness sexual stigma: Implications for health and recovery. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal.

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Congrats and Farewell to Recent Graduates: Drs. Courtney Wallin, Janine Beekman, Danielle Busby, Ethan Eisen, Jennifer Marceron, Gina Raciti and Lara Zappaterra all successfully defended their dissertations this last year! We wish them the best as they move on and carry the GW name far and wide.

Many alumni readers will remember Pamela Woodruff, who earned her BA at GW in 1976 and is best known for teaching Attitudes toward Death and Dying to our undergraduates for 36 years  until spring 2016, when she retired. We thank her for her dedication to making students confront the complexities of this difficult subject matter and wish her the best in retirement as she volunteers with a hospice program!   

Max Althofer, a member of the department staff for the past three years, parted ways with the department after finishing his counseling degree to accept a position as the school counselor for Takoma Park Elementary School in Montgomery County, Md. He now oversees the mental health of 710 kindergartners, 1st- and 2nd-graders. Max was an amazing member of our department and helped in more ways that we can describe. He will be missed!

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Alumni Updates/Class Notes

Azadeh Aalai, BA ’00, earned her master’s from the Teachers College at Columbia University and then went on to earn a PhD in applied social psychology at Loyola University Chicago. She became adjunct faculty at GW and is now tenure track at Queensborough Community College in NYC.

Richard Abrams, BA ’88, obtained a law degree in 1991, and is now the managing partner of Mintzer Sarowitz' Wilmington Delaware Office. He is a trial attorney and defends insurance companies and their insureds. He has two grown daughters and two grandchildren.

Helen Ackerman, MA ’62, has a telemental health practice. This fits in with her life style and that of her clients—many of whom are home-bound. She continues to enjoy the wonderful South Florida weather with her family.\

Elsa Alaswad, BA ’10, is currently in the process of interviewing for medical schools and admissions committees seem to value her psychology background. Her liberal arts education at GW was integral in composing her narrative as a non-traditional medical school candidate.

Dianne Andruch, BA ’82, went on to Loyola Marymount for an MA in counseling but made her career in the Foreign Service. She is now retired in Arizona.

Joeanna Arthur, PhD ’09, is a R&D scientist for the Department of Defense. She is currently on a joint duty assignment to the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and detailed to the FBI.

Jewel Baltimore-Taylor, BA ’03, currently practices law with the Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Postal Service. Her practice includes employment discrimination litigation and general advice/counseling to agents/auditors to prevent fraud, waste and abuse in the Postal Service.

Peter Berman, BA ’68, PhD ’75, is enjoying semi-retirement in Northern California after 40 plus years at the Palo Alto VA Medical Center and Stanford. He is continuing with his private practice, and he has many found memories of GW and the many fine students and faculty.

Shreya Chaturvedi, BA ’16, will be attending a MS-PhD speech language pathology program at Boston University.

Maria Cimporescu, BA ’13, is currently in the clinical psychology graduate program at GW.

Michelle Cohan, BA ’11, writes and produces feature stories for CNN International's post-production unit. In her spare time, she stays busy training for triathlons!

Marilyn Cohen, MA ’62, is retired and occupies herself with travel, classes and volunteering at the National Museum for Women in the Arts and the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Mitchell Cohen, PhD ’80, is a partner at Ruda Cohen & Associates, consulting firm specializing in leadership development and selection.

Clarissa Coultas, BA ’13, began an MBA program at the Paul Merage School of Business and started work at Experian.

Richard Creswell, BA ’53, currently lives on the airport in Winter Haven, Fla., where he flies his homebuilt airplane. He spends his summers at his beach house in Middlesex Beach (Bethany), Delaware.

Carolyn Dalldorf, BA ’88, attended UNC Medical School in Chapel Hill, N.C., after graduation and has lived in Charlottesville, Va., ever since practicing general internal medicine.

Dahlia Danesh, BA ’07, is working as a clinical psychologist conducting neuropsychological assessments and therapy with children and adolescents in New York City.

Marc Danzis, BA ’72, went on for a master’s in counseling, then shifted into church-related work becoming a pastor for many years. He did a lot of counseling in that role!

Pooja Dave, PhD, BA ’03, is a clinical health psychology postdoctoral fellow specializing in integrated primary care at the University of Chicago Hospital.

Paulina Diaz, BA ’15, is currently completing a MA in forensic psychology at GW. She expects to graduate in fall 2017. In addition, she is interning at the American Lung Association working on an asthma capacity building initiative for Puerto Rico.

Catherine Diaz-Asper, PhD ’00, is currently an assistant professor of psychology at Marymount University in Virginia.

Kyra Doumlele, BA ’09, is excited to report that following a postbaccalaureate premedical program at Columbia University and several years of research with NYU Medical Center's Department of Neurology, she started medical school at SUNY Downstate College of Medicine this summer.

Rachelle Dubow, BA ’95, is proud to be a partner at the law firm of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, LLP, in the Intellectual Property Practice Group, resident in Boston, Mass. She helps their clients protect, enforce and monetize their trademark rights on a global basis.

Samantha Dubrow, BA ’14, is entering her second year as a PhD student in industrial/organizational psychology at George Mason University. She is conducting research on teams in medical, research, and military settings.

Philip Epstein, BA ’68, earned his PhD in clinical psychology at the University of Cincinnati in 1976. He worked at Cincinnati Center for Development Disorders; Hadassah Medical Center in Jerusalem, Israel;  Mahoning County Diagnostic  Clinic in Youngstown, Ohio;  and is currently in private practice in Cleveland, Ohio. 

Richard Fritsch, MA ’83, PhD ’86, completed psychoanalytic training. He is currently a supervising and training analyst at the Washington Center for Psychoanalysis.

Carl Fritz, MA ’61, retired to Florida after about 45 years in area of mental retardation.

Emma Geller, BA ’10, got married in September 2015 and recently finished her PhD in cognitive psychology at UCLA. This fall she is starting as an assistant teaching professor in the psychology department at UC San Diego.

Carolyn Griffin, BA ’71, following GW, continued psych studies at Catholic University and worked as a school psychologist in D.C. Public Schools. She then got an MBA (Georgetown) and has worked at MetroStage since its founding 32 years ago. She was named a Living Legend in Alexandria in 2007. A textbook by renowned psychologist Jerome Bruner, Processes of Cognitive Growth: Infancy, formerly owned by the late GW Psychology Professor Jacqueline Goodnow, renowned in her own right, was recently donated to the department by Carolyn. Carolyn had borrowed the text years ago, had recently discovered its inscription: “For Jackie with affection, Jerry,” and correctly assumed that the faculty would be delighted to have it.

Abby Gross, BA ’04, is the senior editor at Oxford University Press for social and organizational psychology, acquiring and developing book projects for researchers, students and the general public. She took a roundabout way of getting back to psychology!

Leslie Grossman Abrams, BA ’69, since graduating has started 3 businesses in the areas of communications and leadership development; written two books, the latest called LINK OUT; and coaches and facilitates groups of CEOs, executives and entrepreneurs for Vistage International.

Danielle Guttman-Lapin, PhD, BA ’08, and her husband, W. Blaine Lapin, BA ’08, relocated to Houston, Texas. She is currently a school psychologist in Aldine Independent School District in Houston, Texas.

Roderick Hall, MA ’90, PhD ’94, is in private practice in Coronado, Calif. He is a child, adolescent and adult psychoanalyst and the chair of training in child and adolescent psychoanalysis at the San Diego Psychoanalytic Center. His son Sam was recently married here in San Diego.

Christopher Hartwell, BA ’01, received a PhD in organizational behavior and human resource management from Purdue University and is now working as a professor in the Jon M. Huntsman School of Business at Utah State University.

Roberta Headley, MA ’66, was a kindergarten director and teacher for 33 years. Since retiring 10 years ago, she has tutored adult students who did not know how to read or write, and helped five to become citizens. She has also taken many classes, and paint in oils.

Justin Heckman, BA ’98, is now living in Chicago and working for a company specializing in creating custom travel experiences to select destinations worldwide.

Marilyn Hertzberg, BA ’72, is retired and lives in the San Francisco Bay area.

Alisa Hoffman, BA ’88, is a pediatrician. She attended medical school at GW.

Emily Hotez, BA ’11, this past year, completed her PhD in developmental psychology from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She is currently a researcher at the CUNY Institute for State and Local Governance and an adjunct assistant professor at Hunter.

Candice Hunter, BA ’96, is currently serving as the chief of staff and Title IX coordinator for Richmond Public Schools. Having earned an MBA, she is now combining my love for business and psychology and pursuing a PhD in business psychology at TCSPP.

Zarin Kapadia, BA ’04, MA ’08, is starting her 9th year as a school counselor. She is working on opening up her own bakery. She is a Beachbody coach and loves motivating and helping people reach their goals!

Jordan Kase, BA ’93, is part of the neonatal faculty at Maria Fareri Children's Hospital in Valhalla, N.Y. He is an associate professor of pediatrics at New York Medical College. Further, he is the director of the Regional Neonatal Follow up Program.

Carrie Kerstein, BA ’07, graduated from Emerson College with her master’s in communication disorders in 2014 and is a practicing speech-language pathologist working with a pediatric population. She is performing in her ninth season with Urbanity Dance in Boston.

Amanda Kornreich, BA ’11, is working in live event production for INVNT in Washington, D.C. She also got married to Michael Moore on September 10, 2016 at the St. Regis in Washington, D.C.

Harry Lando, BA ’68, is distinguished international professor at the School of Public Health, University of Minnesota. His primary emphasis is on global initiatives to reduce the harmful impact of tobacco.

W. Blaine Lapin, MD, BA ’08, completed his pediatric residency at the University at Buffalo in June. This summer he and his wife Danielle Guttman (CCAS '08) relocated to Houston, Texas, as he starts a Pediatric Rheumatology Fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine

Emilie Larson, BA ’64, retired earlier this year, and she is enjoying life.

Jessica Lazarus, BA ’07, earned her PsyD from Widener University in 2012. She is currently working as a neuropsychologist in the Philadelphia area.

Jose Lesaca, BA ’15, a year after graduation, completed his tenure as a legal assistant at a local commercial real estate firm and is now in his first year of law school at Emory University in Atlanta, Ga.

Toby Leventhal, BA ’13, moved to NYC and is now working for a real estate developer helping to sell out a luxury condo in Hudson Yards.

Pengli Li, BA ’13, graduated from Cornell Law School in summer 2016, and is joining Sullivan & Worcester, a law firm in Boston, Mass.

Dana Litt, PhD ’10, is currently an assistant professor at the University of Washington in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences where she is currently the PI of several NIH/NIAAA grants.

Serena Lo, PhD ’10, in June, joined the U.S. Government Accountability Office as a design methodologist. In this position, she will put her psychology training to use by helping GAO conceptualize and design strong research to help answer complex policy questions.

Anne Macalpine-Leny, BA ’80, has worked in the field of health care mental health since graduating from GW in 1980. She has worked in clinical settings as well as with industry, government and the third sector. She has lived in the UK for 30 years.

David Mandelbaum, BA ’69, after GW, went on to earn a PhD in human development from Penn State. He taught at Elmira College from 1976 to 1980 and then developed and directed its first counseling center from 1980 to 1982. He then moved to Wilmington, Del., and has a busy private practice.

Evans Mandes, BA ’61, MS ’63, PhD ’66, has recently retired from George Mason University where he served on the faculty of the Psychology Department for 48 years. He was also senior associate dean of the college of science. His latest book on Interpreting Visual Art will be published in January.

Jennifer Marceron, PhD ’16, will serve as a post-doctoral fellow at the Malachite Institute for Behavioral Health in Washington, D.C., in September 2016. She provides psychological services for adolescents, young adults and adults.

Margarita Marin-Dale, BA ’80, JD ’86, taught Latin American studies for 15 years as an adjunct professor at American University. Her book, Decoding Andean Mythology, has been published by The University of Utah Press and was released in September.

Maxwell McGowen, BA ’11, works on the development team at Silicon Valley Community Foundation, the world's largest community foundation, based in Mountain View, Calif.

John McLaughlin, MA ’71, PhD ’75, is still working in the field after all these years. He has had a very full career. Besides his private practice, he served as president of the Maryland Psychological Association, was appointed to the Board of Examiners of Psychologists, and taught for 23 years.

Diane McQuail, BA ’71, has been active in GW Medical School Admissions for 40 years. She is currently the associate dean for admissions.

Dr. Gail Mellow, MA ’77, PhD ’80, has led LaGuardia Community College for 16 years. Her unique approach to education, including seeking out partnerships with technology companies, was the subject of a profile in The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Aaron Moffett, BA ’99, was the 2016 head coach for the USA Team at the Invictus Games. As such, he supervised the 115 U.S. Wounded Warriors that competed in 11 sports against 400 Wounded Warriors from 14 allied nations in the war against terrorism.

Salvatore Moretti, BA ’72, wrote Uppie's Shangrila, and High Horses. The latter sums up his exploits during WWII in Europe.

Moira Muntz, BA ’03, after four years as a spokeswoman in the Obama White House, moved to Portsmouth, Va. There she is raising two children and consulting for Revolution Messaging (digital firm behind Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign) and the first Uber union.

Alyssa Nickow, BA ’01, is the principal of a college preparatory charter school on the south side of Chicago. 

Michelle Northrop, BA ’00, graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a master’s in social work in 2013. She is pursuing licensure and working with homeless veterans at McGuire VA Medical Center.

Ellen O’Boyle, BA ’74, MA ’77, is still working with EPA. She started here the day after she graduated from GW. She then went on to GW again and again to receive her MA in psychology and then her MBA. She lives in Annapolis where she raised her three sons.

Richard O’Connor, BA ’99, is currently member and professor of oncology in the Department of Health Behavior, Roswell Park Cancer Institute. His research focuses on behavioral factors in cancer prevention broadly, and tobacco control specifically.

Ronald O’Day, BS ’82, attended GW while in the service. He enjoyed a second career in Oregon public education (teacher, principal and superintendent). Now, he is enjoying retirement.

Leah Pan, BA ’04, is currently working at Humanitas, INC in Silver Spring, Md., as a public health analyst. She recently got married (in Oct 2015) and bought a house in Petworth July 2016!

Carol Parsons, BA ’77, started a program called "Performing Artists in Residence" at GW to keep up with her theatre & music interests. Today, she is an executive director at UCSB, and runs an after-school and summer program for students in performing arts.

Chloe Patterson, BA ’11, received her Master of Arts in Teaching and was recognized as a Highly Effective Teacher in DCPS for the past three years. Now she is back at GW in their graduate program in autism spectrum disorders and teaching elementary special education.

Adam Pletter, BA ’96, PhD ’01, after receiving his BA in psychology, returned to GW for his doctorate in clinical psychology. His is beginning his 16th year in private practice in Bethesda, Md., and also runs iParent 101, LLC, consulting to parents in the digital world (

Jill Plevinsky, BA ’10, is beginning her fourth year at Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science in the clinical psychology doctoral program, and she recently proposed her dissertation project, which will examine self-management behaviors in college students with IBD.

Christopher Reiss, BA ’77, after GW, completed his master’s degrees (1979) at The New School; PhD  (1982) in clinical psychology at Florida Institute of Technology; his MBA (2005) at Long Island University; LLM (2007) at the University Kent UK; and his EdD (2013) at the University of Virginia. He will defend a third dissertation this December, DLitt (2013) at Drew University. 

Steven Richfield, BA ’81, thanks to his early psychology experiences as an undergrad at GW, was inspired to pursue graduate education (PsyD) at Hahnemann in Philadelphia. He is now a child and adolescent psychologist and parenting author practicing in Plymouth Meeting, Penn.

Louis Richmond, BA ’65, runs a small private psychology practice doing individual and family therapy in Verona, N.J. He feels very fortunate to have experienced his undergraduate training at GW. The coursework was excellent preparation for his advanced training.

Theodore Rosen, BA ’69, PhD ’84, just completed eight years of directing and growing the Masters of Professional Studies Industrial/Organizational Psychology Program at UMBC. He is returning to consulting and will continue in that program as adjunct professor.

Janine Rotsides, BA, BS ’12, graduated with a Doctor of Medicine from the GW’s School of Medicine and Health Sciences in May 2016. She is currently doing her otolaryngology-head and neck surgery residency at NYU School of Medicine.

Amanda Ruiz, BA ’12, received her job offer from the University of Colorado School of Medicine & Children's Hospital Colorado prior to graduation. She has been working as the lead clinical research coordinator for the Department of Pediatric Otolaryngology ever since.

Philip Sandos, BA ’79, is working as system architect for a law firm technical infrastructure in NYC.

Louis Schwartz, BA ’85, did not become a psychologist. He became a lawyer but needs a good psychologist.

Michael Schwartz, PhD ’80, after receiving his degree in psychology, moved to Yale University for a postdoctoral fellowship in neuroscience and later joined the faculty of the department. He is currently the associate dean for curriculum for the Yale School of Medicine.

Kara Sidener, BA ’95, MS ’97, has been a special agent with the FBI for 18+ years. She is a member of the Behavioral Analysis Program, providing behavioral-based support for counterintelligence cases and is a certified practitioner of the MBTI and DiSC assessment tools.

Shelby Siegel, BA ’07, is living in New Orleans, working as an academic advisor for undergraduate students at Tulane University.

Douglas Sisk, PhD ’83, is retiring from teaching at Marian High School, Mishawaka, Ind., at the end of the academic year and moving to California.

Paul Spencer Sochaczewski, BA ’69, lived and worked in more than 80 countries. He is the author of some 15 books. Please visit his website.

Jason Sterlacci, BA ’06, won the 2016 Jeopardy Teachers Tournament. After Jason won the two-week competition, which started in Los Angeles and wrapped up in the DAR Constitution Hall in Washington, D.C., he had some kind words for the faculty at GW. You can watch the video here.

Kayley Sullivan, BA ’13, just completed her third year teaching Pre-K in a tier 1 school in Northeast D.C. and is now starting her own youth soccer school.

Janet Surrey,  PhD ’74, is on the faculty of NYU Medical School, Department of Psychiatry, and the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy in Cambridge, Mass. She is teaching relational meditation practice (Insight Dialogue) in the Theravadan Buddhist tradition.

Helen Synn, BS ’14, is studying medical neurosciences at the Charité Universitätsmedizin Berlin.

Barbara Ungiert, BA ’12, is a part-time MBA student, working full-time in the Journals Department of the American Psychological Association. She works on broadening the reach of psychological research through channels such as social media, e-newsletters and a podcast.

Rene Utianski, PhD, BA ’08, CCC-SLP is currently a clinical fellow in speech-pathology at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. She is conducting research on neurodegenerative diseases, with a focus on primary progressive apraxia of speech.

Stephen Vitas, PhD, BA ’70, received his PhD from the University of Maryland and spent the majority of his career in private practice psychotherapy & medical support with cancer, stroke & dementia patients. He is now focusing on auditory applications in traumatic brain injury rehabilitation.

Helen Watson, BA ’15, is working full time as an employment specialist at PRS Inc. working with individuals with severe mental illnesses to find and keep gainful employment. She also has been working part time as a verbal behavior therapist for a nonverbal teen with autism.

Brad Weiss, BA ’78, is an attorney in Washington, D.C., area trying cases throughout the United States and utilizing psychologists in many cases. He and his wife live in Great Falls, Va. His daughter lives in Tampa and his son lives in Los Angeles.

Nicole Winkelmann, BA, BS ’14, is the office manager and medical assistant at a dermatology office. She is studying for the MCAT to go to medical school.

Ariel Zeigler, BA ’11, is currently pursuing a PhD in clinical psychology with health emphasis at Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology, Yeshiva University.

Mengke Zhou, BA ’15, is now pursuing a graduate degree with GW, majoring in Chinese language and literature.

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Support the Department

Gifts to the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences allow us to provide support for faculty and student research and travel, graduate student fellowships, and academic enrichment activities including guest speakers, visiting faculty, and symposia. Each gift, no matter how large or small, makes a positive impact on our educational mission and furthers our standing as one of the nation's preeminent liberal arts colleges at one of the world's preeminent universities.

You can make your gift to the department in a number of ways:

  • Securely online.
  • By phone by calling the GW Division of Development and Alumni Relations at 1-800-789-2611.
  • By mailing your check, made out to The George Washington University and with the name of the department in the memo line, to:

    The George Washington University
    PO 98131
    Washington, D.C. 20077-9756

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    Get Involved

    Our psychology majors truly value talking to graduates about their careers and experiences post-GW. If you would be interested in exploring ways to become more involved with undergraduate GW psychology students, please complete this form and we will reach out to you to discuss the possibilities. (No commitment is required right now!) Thank you in advance for considering this opportunity!

    Stay Connected

    Interested in representing GW in your region, mentoring current students, or becoming a social media ambassador? Become a GW volunteer! Learn more about these opportunities and grow your GW network today.

    Connect with fellow alumni and enjoy books on professional development topics including management, leadership, organizational change, and more. Sign up.

    Connect with undergraduate and graduate students and fellow alumni through our new online networking platform, GW Career Connect, centered around industry areas of interest.

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