Cultivating future discoveries in research and practice.

Our Derner School of Psychology doctoral students are passionate about their dissertation and research topics. Explore some of their areas of focus.

Fourth Year Students

Name Advisor Research Interests Externship
Brigante, Mathew Dr. Joel Weinberger Unconscious processes in depression, anxiety, and suicidal behavior The City College of New York Counseling Center
Cain, Lylliam Dr. Mark Hilsenroth Psychotherapy process and outcome, object relations, interpersonal theory Center for Attention and Learning at Lenox Hill Hospital, Northwell Health
Cavalcante Krause, Fernando Dr. Michael Moore Anxiety, depression, emotional regulation
Chen, Liqiaonan Dr. J. Christopher Muran Microaggressions in therapy, ruptures, alliance Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
Cohen, Elan Dr. Michael O’Loughlin Critical and post-colonial psychology, psychoanalytic approaches to madness and trauma, Lacanian psychoanalysis
Gaughran, Sean Dr. Michael Moore Narcissism, personality assessment, working alliance NYU Child Study Center
Genovese, Juliana Dr. Kate Szymanski Shame, trauma, intergenerational transmission of trauma, gender issues in psychology, masculinity, relational theory
Gottlieb, Kayla Dr. Carolyn Springer Orthodox Jewish women and spousal relationship satisfaction Yeshiva University Counseling Center
Hougen, Clint Dr. Carolyn Springer Health and rehabilitation psychology, brain-behavior relationships/neurospychology
Kiernan, Christina Dr. Laura Brumariu Optimism, peer relationships in middle childhood, parent-child relationships/attachment, anxiety, trauma/sexual violence Adelphi University Center for Psychological Services
Lokai, Andrew Dr. J. Christopher Muran Therapeutic alliance, microaggressions in treatment, ruptures and repairs, neuropsychology Weill Cornell Medicine Department of Neurological Surgery
López-Aybar, Laura Dr. Lauren Gonzales Critical psychology, mental health stigma, disparities in mental health, mental health and social justice, mental health policy
McCullough, Brittany Dr. Lauren Gonzales Forensic evaluations for juveniles, trauma, neighborhoor context and recidivism Derner Hempstead Child Clinic
Nissen, Kevin Dr. Joel Weinberger Trauma disorder development, personality pathology, hypnosis, nosology, and unconscious processing Northport VA Medical Center
Rahman, Mariam Dr. Michael O’Loughlin Intergenerational transmission of trauma, historical trauma, sexual violence, shame, community mental health, healing Pratt Institute Student Counseling Center
Rothbaum, Beatrice Dr. Chana Etengoff Minority stress, institutional discrimination, LGBTQ mental health Pratt Institute Student Counseling Center
Schwartz, Yael Dr. Kate Szymanski Chilhood maltreatment and adult psychopathology, chilhood emotional maltreatment, maladaptive schemas, attachment, and depression The Compassion Practice
Telzak, Sarah Dr. Karen Lombardi Unconscious transmission of shame in the mother-daughter relationship
Wild, Mackenzie Dr. Kate Szymanski Intergenerational trauma, cross-cultural perspectives on trauma, the impact of trauma on cognition
Wolpoff, Alexxa Dr. Joel Weinberger Implicit processes and hiring decisions, mitigating unconscious hiring bias Nassau University Medical Center

Third Year Students

Name Advisor Research Interests Externship
Ackerman, Sayde Dr. Michael Moore Stigma and bias in borderline personality disorder; underlying mechanisms of depression Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Chen, Crystal Dr. Lauren Gonzales Weight stigma in eating disorder treatment; mental illness stigma within psychology, culturally-informed understandings of attachment, cross-cultural adaptations of the Adult Attachment Interview.
Degtyarev, Zoren Dr. Michael Moore Using model-based approaches to characterize depression-related variation in social learning and decision-making NYU Student Health Counseling Center
Delgado, Brian Dr. Joel Weinberger Unconscious bias towards ASD and correlation with academic outcomes. Effects of MIO subliminal on racial bias. Brookdale University Hospital
Fayyaz, Sundus Dr. Kate Szymanski Examining the relationship between trauma, shame expression, psychopathology, and interpersonal relationships cross-culturally. The City College of New York Counseling Center
Kisson, Kimberly Dr. Carolyn Springer Anxiety, depression, culture, and stress Hofstra University’s Student Counseling Center
Krovatin, Brendan Dr. Lawrence Josephs Masculinity and the effects of non-normative masculine behavior on men’s feelings about their masculinity. The National Institute for the Psychotherapies
Kulsa, Mila Kirstie Dr. Michael O’Loughlin Complexities of and intersectionality between severe psychiatric distress, psychiatric care, subjectivity, narrative, and restorative justice The National Institute for the Psychotherapies
Mikelic, Maxwell Dr. Christina Marini Romantic relationship initiation, development, and maintenance; attachment interventions; SMI/psychotic disorders and romantic relationships
Peebles-Dorin, Maggie Dr. Karen Lombardi Children’s experience of therapy, LGBTQ identity, parental identity, parent-child relationship Brooklyn College Personal Couseling Center
Rodrigues, Gabriela Dr. Laura Brumariu Children’s positive traits, parent-child attachment, internalizing symptomology in preadolescence Westchester Jewish Community Services
Sangster, Raynell Dr. Karen Lombardi Cultural issues in treatment, black youth and mental health
Schwartz, Joshua Dr. Karen Lombardi Parent-child emotion communication, emotion regulation, same-sex parenting, LGBTQ mental health Alice Brown Early Learning Center
Sheridan, Richard Dr. Karen Lombardi Psychology of religion and spirituality, psychodynamic theory & practice, dying and grieving during the Coronavirus pandemic Sagamore Children’s Psychiatric Center
So, Christine Dr. Kate Fiori Romantic relationships and social network of emerging adults, reintegration of older adults during COVID-19 NYC Health+Hospitals/Queens
Soultanian, Stephanie Dr. J. Christopher Muran
Terry, Kendra Dr. J. Christopher Muran Language and literature in the therapeutic encounter New York Psychoanalytic Society and Institute (NYPSI)
Teodoro de Assis, Renata Dr. Michael O’Loughlin Early childhood mental health, parental mental health, reproductive mental health, children’s experience in pediatric hospitals, eating disorders in early childhood, somatic psychoanalysis, psychosis in childhood Medical Center
Tseng, Ting-Yun Dr. Robert Bornstein Interpersonal dependency and detachment, acculturation, psychometrics of Relational Profile Test (RPT) CUNY, Graduate Center, Student Counseling Services
Tuminelli, Logan Dr. Joel Weinberger Unconscious processes in trauma, ruptures in early attachment, parentification, personality organization/dysfunction Northwell/LIJ Zucker Hillside Hospital, Bipolar Centers
Vizlakh, Breanna Dr. Michael O’Loughlin Intergenerational trauma, psychological sequelae of asylum seekers and refugees; PTSD, working with veterans Unified Behavioral Health Center for Military Veterans and their Families, Northwell Health
Waslin, Stephanie Dr. Laura Brumariu Parental emotion socialization, parent-child attachment, child psychological adjustment Growth Psychology

Second Year Students

Name Advisor Research Interests Externship
Ayala Aguilera, Nathalia Dr. Laura Brumariu Parents’ strengths and challenges in navigating children’s ASD diagnosis, parental resolution of the diagnosis, parental implicit and explicit cognitions Derner Hempstead Child Clinic
Blake, Elyse Dr. Lawrence Josephs Conflict in romantic relationships, human computer interaction, emergent technological disorders The Village Institute
Chassman, Emily Dr. Joel Weinberger Unconscious processes in shame and mental health stigma Mount Sinai Beth Isreal, Addictions Unit
Goldman, Samantha Dr. Karen Lombardi Sexually coercive behavior, #MeToo cultural narratives, Theory of Mind, empathy,
Gruenstein, Jessica Dr. Nathan George Question-asking behaviors during reading and reminiscing and their relationship to children’s emotion knowledge Alice Brown Early Learning Center
Kanani, Anxhela Dr. Lauren Gonzales Cultural Dimension, attitude towards help seeking and shame proness
Khan, Amna Dr. Kate Fiori Social network/sociability of emerging adults; parent-child religiosity and mental health outcomes; parent-child bonding Derner Hempstead Child Clinic
Levy, Dorin Dr. Joel Weinberger
Liang, Qianlin Dr. Lawrence Josephs The impact of social factors on sexual activities in romantic relationships. Adelphi University Student Counseling Center
Linn, Emily Dr. Carolyn Springer Mental health effects of COVID-19 on healthcare workers and their children; vicarious acquisition of stress, anxiety, trauma Mount Sinai Beth Israel, ACT Team
Lombardi Civin, Chloe Dr. Michael O’Loughlin Psychoanalysis, intersectionality, post-colonial studies, trauma, transracial and transnational adoption, film Adelphi University Student Counseling Center
Luong, Emily Hang Dr. Chana Etengoff Multiculturalism, intersectionality, depression, Asian American mental health Long Beach Reach, Port Counseling
Marte, Chrystal Dr. Kate Szymanski Trauma, intergenerational trauma, resilience, factors which make individuals resilient to past traumatization Mount Sinai Beth Israel
Viswanath, Pavithra Dr. Kate Szymanski Trauma, attachment, parental reflective functioning, emotional regulation, acculturation and immigrant mental health Derner Hempstead Child Clinic
Pereyra, Andrea Dr. Lauren Gonzales Foster youth, trauma, resilience St. Christopher Ottilie RTF
Petrovska, Elena Dr. Carolyn Springer Psychoanlaytic and psychodynamic theory and practice; unconscious factors involved in repetivite patterns, such as rapid-repeat teenage pregnancy IPTAR (Institute for Psychoanalytic Training and Research)
Podell, Samuel Dr. J. Christopher Muran Therapeutic alliance, rupture, motivation, substance use Mount Sinai Beth Israel, Addictions Unit
Rabinowitz, Yocheved Dr. J. Christopher Muran The termination phase of psychotherapy St. Albans VA
Schiff, Talia Dr. Dominic Fareri Neuroimaging psychological processes and pathology, reward processing in healthy and clinical populations Saint Christopher Ottilie (SCO) Residential Treatment Facility
Sheridan, Silas Dr. Robert Bornstein Personality assessment; personality disorders; moral psychology
Wainstein, Jeffrey Dr. Karen Lombardi Countertransference, (role-)play, mentalization, and the virtual Derner Hempstead Child Clinic
Wang, Wei-Qian Dr. Dominic Fareri Prosociality and reward processes in decision making, cultural and language nuances in treatment modalities, stigma and shame associated with mental health Mount Sinai Beth Israel, Dual Diagnosis
Xu, Yuanruo Dr. Carolyn Springer Multicultural psychology and cultural competency in clinical practice, including Asian Americans. Long Beach Reach, Port Counseling
Zylstra, Micah Dr. Kate Szymanski The relationships between suicidality and individual/collective trauma, mortality awareness and death anxiety, COVID-19 effect on mental health/psychological functioning New York Health Hypnosis and Integrative Therapies


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