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GABRIELA LIVAS STEIN, PH.D.

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR 

Gabriela Livas Stein, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist and Professor of Clinical Psychology within the Department of Psychology at UNCG. Dr. Stein received her doctoral degree in clinical psychology with a specialization in child and family psychology from UNC Chapel Hill. She completed her predoctoral clinical internship at University of California, San Diego/VA Consortium followed by a postdoctoral fellowship position at Duke University. Broadly, her research uses developmental psychopathology and cultural-ecological frameworks to investigate the impact of culturally relevant factors on the development of psychopathology for minoritized youth and their families. Dr. Stein’s program of research revolves around three themes: (1) understanding the role of familial cultural values in Latinx families and their impact on the development of Latinx youth, (2) identifying individual risk and protective processes for Latinx and other minoritized youth when facing cultural stressors (e.g., discrimination, acculturative stress), and (3) improving mental health treatment access for Latinx families in community mental health. Dr. Stein has been funded by NIMH, PCORI, and NIDA.

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POST-DOC

FRANCES M. LOBO, PH.D.

POST-DOC

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Frances M. Lobo, Ph.D., is a Postdoctoral Scholar in Psychology. Dr. Lobo graduated with her doctoral degree in Psychology in 2021 under the mentorship of Dr. Erika Lunkenheimer and served as a postdoctoral scholar the following year at The Pennsylvania State University. Broadly, her research program examines parent-child interactions as a socialization context for the development of youth self-regulation and psychopathology during key developmental transitions, from early childhood through adolescence. Additionally, she also investigates how risk and protective factors at the individual (i.e., temperament), family, and community level (i.e., neighborhood, cultural values) impact how parent-child interactions are related to youth developmental outcomes.

GRADUATE STUDENT

JOE SIRCAR, M.A.

GRADUATE STUDENT

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Joseph Sircar, M.A., is a fifth-year graduate student in the clinical psychology doctoral program. He earned his B.S. in Biology and B.A. in Political Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2012. After undergraduate, Joseph spent 5 years conducting applied research with a health equity lens for Frontline Solutions, where he led projects for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Ford Foundation, and others. He is interested in how culture, religiosity, and family systems impact depression and substance-use in communities of color.

GRADUATE STUDENT

CASANDA GOMEZ ALVARADO, B.A.

GRADUATE STUDENT

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Casandra J. Gomez Alvarado is a second-year graduate student in the clinical psychology doctoral program. She earned a B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Applied Developmental Psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). As an undergraduate, Casandra was a research assistant in Dr. Jennifer Silver’s Social Affective Neuroscience and Development (SAND) Lab and Dr. Denise Chavira’s Culture and Anxiety Lab for Mental Health Advances (CALMA). After graduating, she worked as a research coordinator in Dr. Anna Lau’s Culture and Race/Ethnicity (CARE) in Youth Mental Health Lab. Casandra is broadly interested in studying risk and resilience, as well as the relationship between physical and mental health in ethnic minority youth. Additionally, she is interested in intervention development and investigating how to improve access to services for ethnic minority youth.

GRADUATE STUDENT

MICHELE CHAN, M.A.

GRADUATE STUDENT

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Michele Chan, M.A., is a fifth-year graduate student in the clinical psychology doctoral program. She earned her B.A in psychology and biology (2013) from the University of Georgia and her M.A in psychology (2018) from Wake Forest University. Previously, Michele investigated the role of ethnic identity in Asian American adolescents’ relationships and multiracial identity integration. She is interested in how ethnic racial socialization informs ethnic-racial identification for multiracial individuals. Additional topics of research interest include: protective barriers for discrimination, and the psychosocial adjustment of minority and underserved populations.

GRADUATE STUDENT

VALERIE SALCIDO, M.ED.

GRADUATE STUDENT

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Valerie Salcido, M.Ed., is a third-year graduate student in the clinical psychology doctoral program. She earned a B.A. in Psychology from Amherst College in 2017 and a M.Ed in Prevention Research from Harvard Graduate School of Education in 2018. She worked as a project coordinator for a RCT that tested the efficacy of a family-focused prevention program among Latinx children and families living in disadvantaged settings. Her current interests include studying culturally-relevant risk and protective factors pertinent to the mental health of Latinx youth and how minoritized youth cope with instances of discrimination. She is interested in research that utilizes strength-based approaches to promote cultural assets in ethnic minority families.

GRADUATE STUDENT

JOCELYN LITTLE, B.S.

GRADUATE STUDENT

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Jocelyn Little is a first-year graduate student in the clinical psychology doctoral program. She earned a B.S. in Psychology with a double minor in English and French from UNC Greensboro in 2020 with Lloyd International Honors. After graduating, she began working as a Community Health Worker for the Strong Minds, Strong Communities program, a longitudinal research study with an R01 grant targeting mental health accessibility. Jocelyn’s research interests are within risk and resilience factors such as ethnic racial socialization, religiosity, and other cultural factors that protect and empower youth and adolescents of color. Additionally, she is interested in mechanisms of ethnic racial identity development that promote psychological well-being.

GRADUATE STUDENT

PUJA PATEL, M.A.

GRADUATE STUDENT

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Puja Patel, MSc., is a fifth-year graduate student in the clinical psychology doctoral program. She completed her B.A. in Psychology from Meredith College (2014) and her Masters in Global Health from Duke University (2018). Her research interests include immigrant family units and parent-child communication and how these interactions contribute to youth and parent outcomes. She is also interested in the development and implementation of intervention research as it applied to the immigrant population in the community.

GRADUATE STUDENT

JESSICA GARCIA, M.A.

GRADUATE STUDENT

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Jessica Garcia, M.A., is a third-year graduate student in the clinical psychology doctoral program at UNC-G. She attended Brown University and earned her Bachelor’s in Psychology at the University of Miami. Jessica has experience working in diverse research settings and with diverse populations, including children, families, the elderly, and spanish-only speaking individuals. Jessica’s personal and research experiences have informed her passion for understanding the factors that drive familial and individual resilience in the face of interpersonal difficulties and societal hardships. In addition, she is interested in applying and integrating Acceptance and Commitment therapy in Latinx populations for therapeutic efficacy.

UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH

We have PSY 433 students every semester who help with data collection, data analyses, participate in weekly lab meetings, and volunteer with underserved communities. Students can also conduct their own research and present at local, regional, and national conferences. We have had many students conduct URSCO projects as well as participate in fellowship and programs supporting undergraduate research endeavors.

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