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Doctoral Students



Hyeeun Chung is a third year Family Science doctoral candidate from Korea. She earned her B.A. in Consumer and Child Studies from Seoul National University. She also earned her M.S. in Child Development and Family Studies from Seoul National University. Hyeeun has worked on a Multicultural Families Support team as a desk officer at the Headquarters of Healthy Family Support Centers. She also has worked at the Korea Institute for Health and Social Affairs (KIHASA), a government-affiliated organization, focused on low birth rate and aging. Hyeeun's Master's thesis investigated intentions of a having a second child by employment status of married women. Her current research interests include Asian immigrants’ acculturation, parenting, and mental health. In her spare time, Hyeeun enjoys practicing yoga, working out, and cooking.


Emily Cook is a fourth year Family Science doctoral candidate from Montgomery Village, Maryland. She earned a B.A. with Highest Honors in Psychology from Emory University and a M.S. in Couple and Family Therapy from the University of Maryland. Emily's master’s thesis investigated the impacts of trauma symptoms on maternal parenting and child psychological health. Her dissertation examines how recent deployment cycle experiences are related to mental health and marital satisfaction for female spouses of active duty service members. She is using secondary data from the Military Family Life Project, a Department of Defense data set. Emily is currently working as Project Director for the Maryland Veterans Resilience Initiative, a two year grant that partners the University of Maryland School of Public Health with the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. She is also assisting with a new funded project focused on understanding the behavioral health experiences of women veterans.  Emily also works in a private practice as a licensed couple and family therapist and is an AAMFT supervision candidate working as a night supervisor for FMSC's Center for Health Families. While a doctoral student, Emily taught two semesters of an undergraduate course on couple relationships (FMSC 260), and assisted with research methods (FMSC 302) and children in families (FMSC 332). In her time away from clients and work, Emily enjoys spending time in the company of her husband and friends, exploring new local restaurants, and reading novels.

BreAnna Davis is a second year Family Science doctoral candidate from Charlotte, North Carolina. She graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a B.S. in Human Development and Family Studies. BreAnna earned her M.S. in Couple and Family Therapy from the University of Maryland. She has previously worked as a grant writing and program planning intern. Her research interests include gender roles in families, the impact of financial literacy in premarital couples, and racial and gendered socialization of children and its impact on identity. BreAnna also currently works in a private practice as a licensed couple and family therapist. During her down time, you will most likely find BreAnna engaged in a movie, practicing yoga, trying new restaurants, or planning travel with her friends.
Ada Determan, a fifth year Maternal and Child Health doctoral candidate, is originally from Arlington, VA. She earned her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Virginia and her M.P.H. in Health Promotion-Disease Prevention from George Washington University. Ada has worked for a public health consulting firm on issues related to substance abuse and treatment, for a research center focused on diabetes interventions and complications, and for the federal government on program areas focused on improving the health of underserved populations. Ada’s current research interests include hearing loss in children, quality improvement in health systems, and the effects of policies on maternal and child health. During her free time, Ada enjoys spending time with her husband and two children (ages 3 & 6), getting together with friends, attending area festivals and events, playing outdoors, and occasionally making it to the gym for Zumba.

Jessica DiBari is a fourth year Maternal and Child Health doctoral candidate from Northport, New York. She earned a B.A. in Public Health and her M.H.S. in Environmental Health Science from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Jessica currently works as a Health Scientist in the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB).  Previously, she worked for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) contributing to the planning and implementation of the National Children’s Study, a longitudinal study looking at environmental exposures in pregnancy through 21 years of age. Jessica's professional interests focus on gestational weight gain, breastfeeding, and infant growth. In her free time, Jessica enjoys playing soccer.


Laurén Doamekpor is a fifth year Maternal and Child Health Ph.D. candidate from Ghana. She was born in Jerusalem and grew up on the island of Cyprus. She earned her B.A. in Biology from Brandeis University in Massachusetts and her M.P.H. in Maternal and Child Health from The George Washington University. Laurén has worked at Brigham and Women’s hospital conducting clinical research on circadian rhythms and cardiovascular health and also at the University of Ghana’s Institute of Statistical, Social, and Economic Research (ISSER) on various needs assessments and program development projects. Earlier this year, she was selected as a member of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Millennial Health Summit for leaders recognized as graduate students who will have the opportunity to significantly address health disparities in the United States. Her research interests include race/ethnic health disparities, immigrant health and the link between chronic stress and disease risk. Her dissertation is focused on understanding the relationship between cultural identity, stress and health among Black immigrant women. Laurén loves most reality television shows, reading science-fiction books, traveling with her husband, and she is a foodie who enjoys cooking in her spare time.

Katheryne Downes is a second year Maternal and Child Health doctoral student from the Tampa Bay area in Florida.  She has previously earned a B.A. in Psychology and a dual-M.P.H. in Epidemiology and Biostatistics. She has over 12 years of experience in academic research and previously worked for over 5 years as a consulting biostatistician in clinical research, with a specialty focus in obstetrics & gynecology. Over the past summer, she completed a fellowship in epidemiology at the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Katheryne's current research interests include high risk pregnancy and preterm birth. Some of her hobbies include hiking, ballroom dancing, art (photography and painting) and, most recently, flying trapeze!
Mili Duggal is a fourth year Maternal and Child Health (MCH) doctoral candidate. She is originally from India and graduated from Sophia College, Ajmer, India with a B.A in English Literature, Sociology, and Psychology. Mili earned her Post Graduate Diploma in Health Management from IHMR, Jaipur, India. Her thesis work was titled "Operationalization of Screening for Anemia in Pregnant Women in an Urban Primary Health Care Institution in New Delhi, India." Mili has worked as an Assistant Professor at AAIDU, Allahabad, India, and as a UNICEF Consultant on social mobilization and advocacy in under served areas across India. Mili later came to the United States to earn her MPH in Global MCH from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. During her MPH she worked within the MCH program of the Louisiana Office of Public Health on health education communication projects.  Her dissertation is focused on domestic violence in India and its impact on health outcomes for mothers and their infants. Mili enjoys reading books and has recently started to knit. She loves spending time with her family, friends, and her dog, Olive. Mili has even done a few 1000 miles long motorcycle rides riding pillion.
Jenifer Fahey is a second year Maternal and Child Health doctoral student from Mexico City, Mexico. She earned a B.A. in Humanities from the University of Texas at Austin. Jenifer also earned a M.S. in Public Health at Harvard University and a M.S. in Nursing (Midwifery) from Yale University. She is currently a member of faculty at the University of Maryland School of Medicine (Baltimore) where she practices as a full-scope nurse midwife and also works as Director of Maryland Advanced Perinatal Support Services Program a collaborative program with DHMH, Johns Hopkins’ Obstetric Department to help provide outreach support to community hospitals and providers of perinatal care. Jenifer is interested in maternal mortality reduction (through provider training in management of obstetric emergencies), interconception care, and innovative models of healthcare delivery – specifically, group prenatal care and midwifery-led care. She enjoys spending time with her daughters (ages 9 and 11) and husband, soccer (watching), writing, and dancing.

Patty Fanflik is a sixth year Family Science doctoral candidate and a native of Maryland. She received her Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Palm Beach Atlantic University, a Master's of Science in Human Development and Family Science from Kansas State University, and a Master's of Arts in Sociology from Southern Illinois University. Patty spent six years as deputy director of the Office of Research and Evaluation at the National District Attorneys Association/American Prosecutors Research Institute. She is also a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist. Patty's research experience has included large-scale national surveys, experimental and quasi-experimental investigations, and qualitative case studies. Her research interests include the interface of law and mental health issues, family and individual coping strategies following violent crime, and family violence. Outside of school and work, Patty loves traveling, spending time with her family and friends, and having fun outdoors with her dog, Piggy.


Amanda Ginter is a fourth year Family Science doctoral candidate from Cincinnati, Ohio. She attended Miami University, earning a B.A in both Classical Languages and Women’s Studies and an M.S. in Family Studies. Her Master’s Thesis examined the consequences of mothers’ breast cancer experiences for their adult daughters’ intimate relationships. Prior to attending the University of Maryland, Amanda conducted research on breast cancer and obstetric issues in a variety of academic and hospital settings. She has also conducted research with FMSC faculty on health messages for rural, low-income women as well as the relationship between smoking and postpartum depression. Amanda’s research interests include coping methods for breast cancer patients and their families, HPV vaccine usage, health literacy, and bioethics. Her dissertation is a qualitative study that explores how single women navigate breast cancer diagnoses, treatment, recovery, and survivorship. Amanda is a Faculty Extension Assistant with University of Maryland Extension, where she analyzes and disseminates data on the Health Insurance Literacy Initiative. In her spare time, Amanda enjoys knitting, reading, and vegetarian cooking.

Ashwini Gundawar is first year Maternal and Child Health doctoral candidate from India. She earned her M.P.H. with a Leadership and Management concentration from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health. She has worked as an Acting Country Director and then as a Technical officer while she was a Post-Doctoral fellow in the Health Systems section of the International Health department of Johns Hopkins. Ashwini practiced as a Pathologist in India for over ten years. She would like to combine her medical background with working with people and communities. She is interested in how economic conditions affect women and their children's health, and leadership development among women and its impact on the health of other women in the community. In her free time, Ashwini enjoys reading, writing, riding her bike, taking long walks, and meeting new people.
John Hart is a second year Family Science doctoral student from Gaithersburg, Maryland. He earned a B.A. in Psychology with Honors from The George Washington University. He also earned a M.S. in Couple and Family Therapy at the University of Maryland. John has worked at Children’s Hospital in Washington D.C. as a HIV tester and a peer educator on risky health choices. He also interned at the Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, MD as a research assistant exploring the role of pharmacological drugs on young adults. He was also a clinical residential counselor at a psychiatric rehabilitation center working with adults. John's clinical interests include the structural patterns (i.e. power dynamics, boundaries around the couple, and boundaries between the partners) that exist in ethnic couples’ relationships. His research interests include the experiences of low-income men as they transition into adulthood, the acculturative and assimilative processes first-generation immigrant young men face, and the interpersonal and societal challenges of African American fathers. John loves watching movies (he is a movie buff), working out, playing basketball, hanging out with family and friends, having debates about various topics, keeping up with politics and current events, learning about different cultures through travel or conversation, and pulling pranks. He is also somewhat of a barber - he can cut his own hair and other peoples' hair!

Sherylls Kahn is a third year Family Science doctoral candidate from Los Angeles, CA. She earned her B.A. in Psychology from Pomona College and a M.S. in Couple and Family Therapy from the University of Maryland, College Park. Her Masters thesis explored the effectiveness of couple therapy for improving well-being in aggressive couples. Sherylls’ main research interests focus on issues affecting immigrant families. More specifically, she is interested in how immigration experiences affect Latino immigrants' mental health.  She previously worked as a senior research assistant at Child Trends, a non-profit research organization focused on issues affecting children and their families. Sherylls currently works as a project coordinator at School Readiness Consulting, an organization focused on improving early childhood education. In her spare time, Sherylls enjoys cooking, watching reality television, learning new things, and exploring new places with her husband, Jordan, and their super cute dog, Oliver.

Yoonjoo Lee is a second year Family Science doctoral student from South Korea. She earned a B.A. in Consumer and Child Studies from Seoul National University. She also earned a master’s degree in Child Development and Family Studies. She has worked as a full-time administrative assistant at Seoul National University, managing a one-year department budget and scholarships for undergraduate students, as well as assisting the department chair. She has also worked as a research specialist at Research Institute of Human Ecology at Seoul National University, preparing for projects meetings and assisting professors in conducting research. She is interested in time-use patterns of children and family, family policy, and research methodology. In her spare time, she enjoys cooking, jogging, and swimming.

Tiffani Stevenson Lloyd, a fifth year Family Science doctoral candidate, is a graduate of the CFT Masters program. She is from Fruit Heights, Utah, and she graduated with honors from Brigham Young University with a B.S. in Psychology. As an undergraduate, she assisted in research exploring the link between immigration and heart health, and she also conducted research for her honors thesis which investigated the theoretical implications of a theistic approach to psychotherapy. She spent 4 months in Romania conducting qualitative research and providing therapy for institutionalized children, and 18 months in Venezuela working as a missionary helping families and individuals. Tiffani currently works as a Marriage and Family Therapist in her own private practice in Rockville, Maryland and she is working towards becoming a certified AAMFT supervisor. Tiffani's disseration is a study of the relationship of marriage and other romantic relationships among fragile families and how these impact child behavior problems. Other research interests include the relationships, experiences, and mental health of single adults. Outside of school, Tiffani enjoys singing with the National Philharmonic Chorus, gardening and enjoying the outdoors, running and training for competitive races, and cooking and sampling new and exciting cuisine in excellent restaurants. She also enjoys spending time with her husband, family and friends.


Ronneal Matthews is a second year Maternal and Child Health doctoral student from Oklahoma City, OK. She earned her B.S. in Community Health from the University of Central Oklahoma and her MPH in Epidemiology from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. She has 11 years of experience in the field of public health. Most of her work has been in chronic disease prevention, sexual and reproductive health and Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR). She has worked primarily as a Project Manager conducting program planning, implementation, curriculum development and evaluation. Her current clinical and research interests include sexual and reproductive health of African American women and girls with an emphasis on how intergenerational programs and interventions can impact sexual and reproductive health. Ronneal loves singing, cooking, reading novels, writing poetry and short stories (writing a novel is on her bucket list), playing computer games, going to the park with her kids, going to the movies and going to live music events (especially jazz, deep house & soul). She loves reading Young Adult fiction like Harry Potter, Twilight, Hunger Games, etc. She has two beautiful girls, Journey (8) and Inaya Freedom (5) and a wonderful husband Joseph who is also in graduate school.                                                   


Lauren Messina is a fourth year Family Science doctoral candidate. She is originally from New Rochelle, NY and graduated from Villanova University with a B.A. in Communications.  Lauren earned her M.S. in Couple and Family Therapy from the University of Maryland. She has worked as a research assistant with the Food Stamp Nutrition Education program as well as with the Fathers and Sons in Transit project. Her research interests include applied, intervention and prevention research on parenting, family health behaviors, childhood and adolescent health and mental health, and family resilience. Clinically, Lauren is interested in therapeutic systemic approaches to working with parents and children. Her dissertation is titled "Parental responses to adolescents depressive disorder diagnoses: Implications for family-based treatment." Additionally, Lauren is an instructor for FMSC332 Children and Families and she teaches clinical classes at Trinity University's Master's in Counseling program. Lauren has also served on the Executive Committee of the Public Health Garden, as a mentor to undergraduate students through the Graduate Student Government Mentorship program, and as the Outreach Coordinator of Maryland Council on Family Relations. In her free time, she enjoys watching documentaries, traveling to visit family and friends, gardening, cooking, and mountain biking.

Ashley Eberhart Munger is a third year Family Science doctoral student from southwestern Pennsylvania. She earned a B.A. in Psychology from Grove City College and a M.S. in Couple and Family Therapy from the University of Maryland. Her masters thesis investigated the relationships among food security, health locus of control, and mental health. Ashley’s research interests include family nutrition, hunger, obesity, and poverty. She currently works as a research assistant at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine for a qualitative study investigating the impact of couple conflict on children. In her spare time, she enjoys literature and poetry, classic movies and documentaries, running, yoga, and traveling with her husband. She likes learning new things, going new places, and having new experiences.
Woochul Park is a fourth year Family Science Ph.D. student from South Korea. He earned his B.A. in Religious Studies from Seoul National University. He earned his M.A. in Child and Family Studies from Yonsei University. Woochul has worked as a family therapist at the Healthy Family Support Center in Seoul, a research assistant helping to develop the Korean government-funded program "Family Relationship Improvement Program for Preventing Adolescent Runaway," and as an adolescent counselor and social worker for the Youth Companion Policy in Korea. His research interests include couple relationship, body-image, self-esteem, sexuality, and North Korean refugees in America. Woochul enjoys playing piano and swimming.
Deirdre Quinn is a first year Family Science doctoral student from Washington, DC. She graduated from Georgetown University with a BA in English and minors in French and Government.  She earned an MLitt. in Creative Writing from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, and an MSc. in Gender & Social Policy from the London School of Economics & Political Science, where her thesis focused on the growing conflict in the United States between religiously-sponsored health systems and the diverse communities they serve.  Most recently Deirdre has worked for an energy consulting firm as a proposal and grant writer; she has previously taught English at the high school and college level and is also a bartender!  Her research interests include reproductive health and family planning program design and implementation, both domestically and internationally; the development of population, family planning and reproductive health policy; and the placement of reproductive health in the context of human rights.  In her free time, Deirdre loves to read, travel and update her book review blog (who can say no to free books in exchange for writing a review?)
Elise Resnick is a sixth year Family Science doctoral candidate and hails from Cleveland, Ohio. She received her bachelor’s degree in screenwriting from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1998 and her Masters in Marital and Family Therapy from UMCP in 2008. Elise worked at the Advisory Board Company in Washington, DC, as a Research Specialist, completing strategic research for hospitals and health systems worldwide. She also worked at the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) as the manager of their policy department at the national headquarters in Arlington, VA. She worked on federal legislation advocating for the rights of those with mental illnesses. Elise was drawn to the mental health field, and she liked the idea of working with families and couples from a systems perspective. During her time in the program, Elise has enjoyed learning therapeutic techniques and models, seeing a wide range of clients, and spending time with her classmates. Elise has been married for five years to Jaime, and they live in Silver Spring.  She enjoys traveling, shopping, cooking, and watching reality TV.

Hoda Sana is a third year Maternal and Child Health doctoral student from Iowa. She majored in Psychology and Biology at Creighton University and received her M.P.H. from George Washington University, with a specific focus in Maternal and Child Health. Hoda has worked as a drug researcher at Boystown Research Hospital; a project facilitator for a smoking cessation project in Sioux City, Iowa; an executive coordinator on a project in Jalalabad, Afghanistan, to establish proper facilities to promote women’s education; and a researcher on high risk patient outcomes in mobile clinics in Kabul, Afghanistan. She desires to continue her studies and research on maternal and child health in third world countries. In her spare time, Hoda enjoys reading, flying kites, playing sports (played Rugby during undergraduate career), traveling, and participating in any outdoor activities.


Allison Schroeder is a first year Family Science doctoral candidate and graduate of the CFT masters program from Baltimore, MD. She earned a B.A. in Psychology, with a minor in Philosophy, from the University of Texas at Austin. Allison also earned her M.A. in Public Policy from Johns Hopkins University. She previously worked as the Director of International Partnerships at World Relief. Prior to that position, she conducted workforce development policy research for the Abell Foundation in Baltimore. Allison's research and clinical interests include strengthening families and communities to mitigate the consequences of poverty, the prevention and treatment of child abuse and other forms of domestic and gender-based violence, and cross-cultural communications and relationships. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and son, as well as leading worship at her church.


Yassaman Vafai is a first year Maternal and Child Health doctoral candidate from Tucson, Arizona. She earned a B.S. in Molecular and Cellular Biology from the University of Arizona and her M.P.H. in Maternal and Child Health from Boston University. She has worked as an independent project consultant at Boston Medical Center and as a graduate research assistant at Boston University School of Public Health. She has also served as an assistant project manager at the Metamovement Dance Company promoting healthy nutrition and physical activity in the South End neighborhood of Boston. Her current research interests include the effect of infectious disease on infant development, the effect of environmental factors (such as chemicals) on infant development, and mental and behavioral development during adolescence and how the environment can directly influence this period. In her free time, Yassaman enjoys outdoor activities and adventures, playing sports, reading poetry, listening to music, cooking, and traveling. 

Damian Waters, a fifth year Family Science doctoral candidate, is a graduate of the Couple and Family Therapy masters program. He graduated with his Bachelor's degree from Georgetown University. As an undergraduate, he worked as a hotline counselor, providing clinical support for people who were in crisis and/or feeling suicidal. After graduation, Damian pursued his interest in counseling as a New York City Teaching Fellow, in which he was able to work with emotionally disturbed high school students in the Bronx. Damian's current clinical interests focus on African American families, particularly fathers. Damian's dissertation focuses on African American fathers' interactions and involvement with their children. He hopes to use findings from this research to develop programs and initiatives that would encourage low-income fathers to become actively involved in their children's lives. Outside of school, Damian remains busy as an active member of his church, reading about early church history, teaching GED classes, cooking, and studying Brazilian Jujitsu.
Andrew Williams is a second year Maternal and Child Health doctoral student from Watertown, South Dakota. He earned his B.S. in Mass Communications from Minnesota State University Moorhead. He also earned his M.P.H. in Community Health at New York University. Andrew has worked at the North Dakota Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Center at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences where he worked to implement a standardized prenatal alcohol screening in North Dakota. Andrew also established a partnership with a clinic in Brazzaville, Congo, screening women for alcohol and cigarette use in pregnancy. He is interested in prenatal health and early childhood development, health communication, health education, and translational research. Andrew also enjoys watching soccer and baseball, cooking, going to movies and museums with his wife.


Couple and Family Therapy Students



Sam Allen is a first year graduate student in the joint Master's/Ph.D. program in Couple and Family Therapy and Family Science. Sam is no stranger to the University of Maryland, however, having graduated Cum Laude with high honors in May 2012 from the Department of Family Science. He successfully defended his departmental honors thesis, titled: “'I don't want the neighbors to know:' A contextual analysis of Jewish, Orthodox gay men and their relationships with their mothers.” As an undergraduate, Sam spent his time singing in an Acapella group, participating in educational activities to promote LGBT awareness and advocacy on campus, and teaching Zumba classes. During his senior year, Sam interned at the Human Rights Campaign in Washington, D.C., the nation's largest human rights advocacy organization. Sam's work as an undergraduate reflects his primary research interests-how religious families and communities negotiate sexuality variance among LGBT adolescents and young adults. Additionally, Sam is also interested in research surrounding food insecurity, nutrition education, and food-based intervention programs. In his spare time, Sam very much enjoys cooking, sampling new restaurants and gastropubs, eating, shopping, and working at the local organic market, and teaching group fitness classes. 


Elizabeth Brown is a first year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Indianapolis, Indiana. She earned a B.A. in Communication (with an emphasis in Public Relations) and a minor in Spanish. She also earned her M.S. Ed. In Higher Education Student Affairs from Indiana University. She has spent the past five years working at the University of Maryland advising and creating leadership programs for the sororities on campus, supervising graduate students, and teaching leadership courses. Before that she served as the Multi-Cultural Greek Council and National Pan-Hellenic Council advisor while also serving on the Racial/Religious Bias Incident team at Indiana University. Her current research interests include military families, families/ couples dealing with infidelity, family communication, and all-female families. Liz loves watching sports (NFL, NCAA football and basketball etc.), traveling, spending time with friends and family, reading books, working out, and shopping.


Korinn Carter is a first year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Richmond, Virginia. She earned a B.A. in Psychology from George Mason University with a minor in Communication. She has previously worked in the Clinic for Psychological Services at George Mason as a practicum student and volunteered as an Advocate for the George Mason Sexual Assault Services 24-hour hotline while also nannying for a variety of families in the area. Korinn is the Founder and President of an upcoming nonprofit female empowerment organization, CDNB Inc.  It is currently housed as the student organization, Chase Dreams Not Boys (CDNB), on the campuses of George Mason University and Old Dominion University. The goal is to have a chapter of CDNB at every college and university in the nation! She is also a recipient for the Superior Dean's Distinction of Public Service award for 2013 from the Dean of her College. Korinn loves giving back to the community through service and mentorship, feeling the sense of accomplishment after completing tasks, and laughing and hanging out with her friends.


Michelle Collins is a first year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Durham, North Carolina. She earned a B.A. in both Psychology and Hispanic Studies from East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina. She has previously interned at a group home in Cordoba, Argentina.  She also has tutored middle school students, worked at summer camps, and taught ESL classes.  Her current research interests include Hispanic families, parent-child relationships in African American families, and intercultural communication. In her free time she enjoys shopping, cooking and eating, and traveling (notably to Spain, Paris, and Argentina). She has played both the lion and the scarecrow in productions of the Wizard of Oz!


Lindsey Foss is a first year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She graduated from the University of Richmond with a B.A. in International Studies with a concentration in Global Politics and Diplomacy. She has worked at Sasha Bruce Youthbuild, at a GED and trade training program, as well as in a YWCA Adult Literacy Program.  Her current research interests involve adjudicated youth and family preservation. In her spare time, Lindsey enjoys jogging, dabbling in whitewater kayaking, and playing banjo. She is quite the world traveler, and has visited every continent but Australia and Antarctica.


Maya Foster is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Silver Spring, MD. She earned a B.A. in Psychology and Public Policy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Maya also completed a senior thesis to graduate with honors. She worked two part-time jobs through college. She served as co-president to UNC Student Parent Association and also served on a university government committee, The Chancellor's Child Care Advisory Committee, where she was able to successfully change a local policy regarding the administration of scholarship funds. She worked as a research assistant in a social psychology laboratory at UNC. She also interned in Washington D.C. at The Center for Youth and Family Investment. Her clinical and research interests include the secondary effects of social policy, specifically, how policies shape family decisions, structure, identity, and value. She is also interested in blended families, fatherhood, absent parents, and childhood trauma. She loves HGTV, food TV, cooking, and fishing on the weekends with her daughter. She also makes and sells upholstered headboards. She was recently honored by Jill Biden who presented her with an award for perseverance!


Laura Golojuch is a first year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Arlington, Virginia. She earned a B.A. in Psychology from Georgetown University, with minors in English and Studio Art.  She has worked as a tutor for the DC Reads program and a corps member for JumpStart, with disadvantaged youth in the District of Columbia. She also served as a research assistant with the Early Learning Project, working to assess the cognitive development of three to five year olds as well as assisting with the Baby Elmo Project, which fosters healthy relationships among incarcerated teen fathers and their infants. She is interested in families in urban areas and in poverty, and the stress this places on the family, as well as fatherhood and the absence of fathers. In her free time, Laura enjoys photography, traveling, eating all types of foods, watching and playing sports, and spending time with her family and friends.

Leslie Gunderson is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Ann Arbor, Michigan. She earned a B.S. in Psychology from Brigham Young University. Leslie has worked at a Residential Treatment Center in Utah, assisting teenage girls with therapy interventions, coaching them in day-to-day activities, and teaching them how to have healthy relationships. She has also worked as a research assistant in Brigham Young University’s Counseling Center, where she collected and summarized articles for a meta-analysis on group therapy. She is interested in group therapy within family systems, strengthening individuals by strengthening family relationships, therapy outcomes for mental health issues, and recovery in a family setting. Leslie enjoys hiking, camping, exercising (anything outdoors!), reading, singing, and dancing. She also played Mrs. Potts in a theater production of “Beauty and the Beast.”

Vickye Hayter is a first year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Arkansas. She earned her B.S. in Nursing and Masters of Science in Health Science from the University of Arkansas. She has extensive experience in maternal child and adolescent health (MCAH) as result of working as a labor and delivery nurse, public health nurse and MCAH coordinator for the County of Santa Clara. Her work with California’s Black Infant Health (BIH) Program involved working with pregnant and parenting African-American women and their families on subjects that included prenatal health, infant care, breastfeeding, postpartum health, father involvement, social support, obesity and wellness. The BIH Well program that she developed received an award for being the most replicable and promising public health practice at the CityMatch Conference 2006 and was presented at the Office of Minority Women’s Health Summit and other national conferences. Prior to working for BIH, Vickye gained valuable experience working as a consultant to health plans developing business processes. As a health educator she gained experience developing programs for health plan members that included fitness and weight management, prenatal education, and patient education for chronic disease management in the areas of asthma, heart health and diabetes.  Her current research interests include work life balance, child care, family policy, and the effects of social support on maternal health outcomes. In her spare time Vickye enjoys exercising, dancing, getting together with friends, traveling and spending time with her husband and children.


HaeDong “Shawn” Kim is a first year Couple and Family Therapy Masters student who considers both South Korea and Ann Arbor, Michigan home. He earned his B.A. in Education from Hanyang University at Seoul, South Korea and a Master of Divinity from Presbyterian College and Theological Seminary at Seoul, South Korea. He has worked as a children’s pastor for six and seven year olds and as an English teacher and librarian in Korea. Shawn is interested in multi-cultural familes, “third culture kids” and how the family adapts to cultural differences between parents, children, and society. He is also interested in developing educational programs for premarital couples and for each developmental stage of the family. In his spare time, Shawn enjoys photography, drawing, basketball, jogging, and playing with his nine month old son.


Erin Sande Levenberg is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Reno, Nevada. She graduated from the City University of New York (CUNY) Baruch College with a B.A. in Psychology and a minor in Spanish. Most recently Erin worked as an Adult Literacy instructor at the YWCA in Washington DC. Her research interests include the affects of diagnosis, substance abuse, and adult attachment. Before pursuing a graduate degree, Erin worked at a mental health outpatient clinic where she created group therapy curriculum and co-authored a guided journal for an adolescent day-treatment program. She enjoys yoga, running, hiking, cooking, camping, and her family. Erin also loves incredibly spicy food!


Andrea Lystrup is a first year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Las Vegas, Nevada. She earned a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Maryland after first attending Brigham Young University for two years. She has interned at the Defense Center of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury, where she did research on reliance factors and coping strategies for US military members and their families. She has also been a research assistant on projects dealing with food insecurity and low-income child nutrition programs, and assessment of elementary school student motivation in connection with the quality of instruction given by the classroom teacher. Andrea is currently interested in researching military families. Specifically she would like to study factors of families who cope well with deployments and have positive reintegration experiences as well as understand the factors of families that have negative deployment experiences. She is also interested in the role of fatherhood and the impact on families without a strong father figure. Andrea loves the performing arts (especially ballet), singing, making her own clothes, and playing musical instruments (the piano and the organ). She also enjoys swimming and recently earned her SCUBA license!


Maureen L. McElroy is a first year Couple and Family Therapy student. She earned a B.A. in the Program of Liberal Studies and an M.A. in Developmental Psychology from the University of Notre Dame. She has worked in the substance abuse prevention field. She is a Certified Parent Educator with the Parent Encouragement Program (PEP) in Kensington, Maryland. In this role, she helps parents raise responsible, competent, cooperative children in an atmosphere of mutual respect. She enjoys spending her free time with family and friends. She also likes to play board games, canoe, go for walks and cook. 

Paige Murtagh is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. She earned a B.S. in Family Studies, with a minor in Sociology, from Miami University of Ohio. She has worked as the Support Intern for the Young Parents Support Network, a division of the Center Foundation, doing case management and mentoring for young parents and pregnant teens in impoverished areas of Philadelphia. Paige has also interned, and then worked, as an after school program teacher and part time pre-school teacher at the Oxford Early Childhood Center. Additionally, she has worked as a research assistant on a study of Family Quality of Life in Breast Cancer survivors, spouses of survivors, adult children of survivors and mothers of survivors. She is interested in health related family quality of life, due to her previous research experience in the area. She is also especially interested in the impact of infidelity, outcome and development of children within families that have faced a crisis, young/teen parents, and substance abuse impacts. Paige enjoys spending time with family and friends, as well as playing with her two dogs. She loves to read, watch professional baseball and attempt to cook. Paige also lived in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia for 5 months studying Social Work at the University of Queensland!
Estefania Ospina is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Miami, Florida. Her entire family is from the beautiful country of Colombia where she spent most of her summers growing up. She graduated Cum Laude with honors from The Florida State University and earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology with a minor in Child Development. She successfully defended her undergraduate honors thesis titled, “Factors Correlated with Teachers Response to Child-Initiated Speech.” While at FSU, she had the privilege of working as a counselor for incoming freshmen and as a research assistant. Estefania has also worked as a counselor in Florida International University’s renowned Summer Treatment Program for children and adolescents with ADHD, ODD, and CD. She is interested in learning about male partners in couple conflicts and in parenting roles. She is also interested in improving cultural barriers affecting the Latino population’s instance of seeking therapy. On her spare time, she enjoys weight lifting, running outside, cooking with friends, and dancing salsa!

Kira Roerig is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Oregon.  She earned her bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University, majoring in Recreation Management Youth Leadership, with an emphasis in Therapeutic Recreation.  She has worked as a youth counselor and coach, has taught Spanish, and served as an activity coordinator at a care facility.  Kira’s current research interests include parenting and adolescence.  She loves to be outdoors and enjoys hiking, running, snow skiing, food, art, and exploring new things.  When she is home during harvest, she may be found helping her family load and store hay bales, or harvesting pumpkins!


Russel Rogers is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Frederick, Maryland. He graduated from Brigham Young University with a B.S. in Psychology and an M.B.A. He studied Organizational Behavior in a doctoral program at the University of Minnesota, completing all but the dissertation. He has worked as a Human Resources professional and executive compensation consultant. Russel's current research interests include resilience following trauma and comparative effectiveness of alternative mood disorder treatments. He enjoys racquetball, spending time with family, hiking, and reading.


Shana Simkin is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Newton, Massachusetts. She graduated from Syracuse University with a B.S. in Child and Family Studies, with minors in Psychology and Spanish. Shana also spent a semester studying abroad in Barcelona, Spain. She previously worked as a senior research assistant at Child Trends, a non-profit research organization focused on issues affecting children and their families. She has also worked at a domestic violence agency as well as a mental health day treatment program for children. Her research and clinical interests include resiliency, family communication, emotional intelligence, and relationship dynamics. In her spare time, Shana enjoys dancing, singing, staying active, and spending time with family and friends.


Jocylynn Stephenson is a first year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Groton, Connecticut. She earned her bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and Cognitive Science at the University of Virginia. As a Family Programs Coordinator at Fort Belvoir, Virginia, Jocylynn provided individualized, ongoing support and encouragement as well as direct information and referral services to Army Reserve unit commands, service-members and their families and volunteer groups. Later, she acted as one of two administrative assistants to the Chief, Transition Support Services Division (TSSD), with the Family and Morale, Welfare, & Recreation Command, US Army, assisting managers of the Army Spouse Employment Partnership, Employment Readiness, Financial Readiness, Relocation Readiness, and Exceptional Family Member programs. She is interested in issues arising from geographic separation in military families and the socialization of third-culture children in both military and interracial/multicultural families. Jocylynn is an avid reader and dance enthusiast. In her free time, she enjoys practicing ballet, volunteering, and biking.


Anna White is a first year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Manassas, Virginia. She earned her B.S. in Psychology with a minor in Communication Studies from James Madison University. She worked as a martial arts instructor for children for several years.  As an undergraduate, Anna interned with both her campus counseling center, providing mental health workshops to freshmen as well as at Healthy families, a local agency which provided early intervention for families at risk for child abuse. During her summers, she also work as a one-on-one aide for children with autism.  Anna is interested in working with families at risk for child abuse, particularly families in which one or more member has a mental, intellectual, or developmental disability.  She would also like to work to promote the use of person-first language in working with clients with disabilities.  In her free time, Anna loves practicing martial arts such as Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, exercising, watching movies, and playing with the best cat in the world.


Jennifer Young is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from Madison, Wisconsin. She earned her bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and Chinese at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Jennifer also earned her master’s degree at The Ohio State University in East Asian Languages and Literatures with a Chinese Language Specialty. Her thesis topic was Chinese-American Couples: cultural difference and marital satisfaction. She has interned at Beijing Normal University’s Family Therapy Center and later worked as the Operations Manager of the Care for Children Special Needs School and Family Services Clinic in Beijing. She is interested in intercultural and mixed-race families, multilingual counseling practices, and immigrant family therapy issues. Jennifer is passionate about traveling and photography. In her free time, she enjoys biking, board games, and being outdoors.


Le "Clio" Zheng is a second year Couple and Family Therapy masters student from China.  She graduated from Beijing International Studies University in Beijing China with a B.A. in Spanish and a minor in Management.  She has previously worked at the Mental Health Association of Connecticut as an educator for the “Kids on the Block” program.  She also worked as a Data Analysis instructor at the University of Arkansas.  Her clinical and research interests include mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, emotionally-focused therapy, art therapy, cross-cultural communications and relationships, intergenerational problems experienced by families, and attachment in adults.  In her spare time, she enjoys listening to music and singing, watching movies, traveling, exploring and cooking new cuisine, shopping, playing games, and spending time with family and friends.