2020-2021 CEBP MEMBERS
I am a doctoral student in the Clinical-Child Psychology program at DePaul University. Broadly, my research interests focus on examining psychosocial contexts (i.e., culture, domestic violence) and mother-child attachment relationships among Latinx communities. More specifically, I am interested in how these factors can moderate the impact maternal psychopathology has on children’s or adolescent’s developmental trajectories. Finally, I am interested in developing and evaluating culturally sensitive interventions and treatments tailored to ethnic minority populations in community and school-based settings.
Paulina Paredes Cienega [She, Her, Hers]
I am a doctoral student in the Clinical Child Psychology program at DePaul University. My current research examines cultural factors (i.e., acculturative stress), parenting, and academic achievement among Latinx youth. More broadly, I am interested in examining developmental and treatment outcomes for dual-language, minority, and immigrant youth to develop and evaluate culturally-tailored intervention and assessment tools for these underrepresented groups. Finally, I am interested in addressing obstacles to care through the dissemination and implementation of evidence-based treatments in community and school-based settings.
Laura Saldana [She, Her, Hers]
I am a student in the Clinical-Child Psychology PhD program. Broadly, my research interests relate to creating, strengthening, and tailoring evidence-based interventions aimed at preventing depression among marginalized communities. I am also interested in understanding how cultural factors influence mental health treatment in hopes of developing cultural-sensitive interventions at the community level. Finally, I am interested in the components of the caregiver-youth relationship and how they may contribute to mental health.
Jesús Solano [He, Him, His]
I am a doctoral student in the Clinical-Community Psychology program at DePaul University. My current research examines the role of parental support during the transition to college for Latinx first-generation college students. My research interests broadly focus on ethnoracial identity formation and its impact on mental health within marginalized populations. I am also interested in the adverse effects of racialized trauma within Latinx immigrant populations. Finally, I am an advocate for culturally appropriate interventions and access to affordable care for diverse groups.
Grevelin Ulerio [She, Her, Hers]
I am a student in the Clinical-Child Psychology PhD program. My research interests broadly focus on how poverty-related stressors influence the psychosocial outcomes of low-income youth. I am currently examining youth relational history, concentrating on how poverty-related stressors may compromise the parent-child dyad and further influence a youth’s relational capacity with other adults, such as a mentor. Finally, I am interested in creating effective, evidence-based treatments that address the impact of complex trauma on the mental health of marginalized communities.
Brittanie Gage [She, Her, Hers]
I am a student in the General Psychology MS Program. I graduated from DePaul University in 2021 with a BA in Psychology concentrating in Human Services. Broadly, my interests revolve around examining factors influencing mental health outcomes among marginalized populations. I am especially passionate about making mental health resources and culturally sensitive clinical treatments and interventions more accessible to Latinx immigrants on a community level. Ultimately, my goal is to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology.
Mariana Bednarek [She, Her, Hers]
I am a student in the General Psychology MS program. I graduated from James Madison University in 2021 with a BA in History and minors in Secondary Education, Latinx Community Engagement, Spanish, and Honors Interdisciplinary Studies. My research interests include understanding the mental health of African American and Latinx youth as well as methods to improve the access to, and efficacy of, culturally informed evidence-based interventions. My ultimate goal is to earn a PhD in Clinical Psychology.
Ashley Harris [She, Her, Hers]
I am currently a student at DePaul University pursuing a Masters Degree in Community Psychology. Broadly, my research interests involve mental health and its effect on youth. I am heavily interested in community involvement and social services. I currently work at a non-profit organization as a teen instructor for a majority of low income youth, and have spent a lot of time volunteering for a vast amount of organizations such as Refugee One, and St.Pauls House and Healthcare Center.
Isabel Fernandez [She, Her, Hers]
I am a student in the General Psychology MS program. I graduated from Illinois State University in 2020 with a Bachelor of science in Psychology and a minor in Sociology. My research interests include examining factors that influence help seeking behavior, diagnosis and treatment of mental health problems in at-risk and ethnic minority youth. I am also interested in mechanisms in which to bolster social-emotional development in at-risk youth. My ultimate goal is to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology in order to conduct research that will better the diagnosis, treatment and social-emotional development of at-risk and ethnic minority youth.
Taylor Ullrich [She, Her, Hers]
PROJECT COORDINATORS & POST BA/BS RESEARCH ASSISTANTS
I graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago with a Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology and a minor in Spanish. I am broadly interested in culturally-informed, evidence-based programs for ethnic/racial minority youth who have experienced trauma, depression, and anxiety and how it impacts their development. I am also interested in how cultural modifications and factors impact programs/interventions and how youth benefit from programs that are culturally competent. I am passionate about making mental health resources more accessible to marginalized communities. My goal is to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology.
Brenda Castillejo [She, Her, Hers]
I graduated from the University of Belgrade with a Bachelor of Arts in Architectural studies. After my graduation, I moved to the US to learn English, seek more opportunities, and continue my education. I was amazed by the social inequalities across cultural groups in the U.S., which inspired me to pursue a doctoral degree in psychology. Broadly, my research interests include analyzing the mental development of youth from underprivileged groups. I am passionate about exploring how cultural background and place in the community affect adolescents' psychosexual development. Lastly, I am a dedicated advocate of the welfare and safety of those facing economic adversity and poverty.
Milena DeMario [She, Her, Hers]
I graduated from Dominican University in May 2021 with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a minor in Philosophy. I am interested in complex trauma exposure, coping, and resilience among youth of African American and Latinx backgrounds. It is important for me to acknowledge the resilience and perseverance that these communities have developed and help them receive equitable mental health services. Ideally, I would like to use a strength-focused lens to help create effective intervention programs for adolescents and youth to foster their overall success and well-being. My short-term goals are to obtain additional research experience and apply to doctoral programs in Clinical Psychology.
Kristen Garcia [She, Her, Ella]
I graduated in June 2020 from DePaul University with a Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. Prior to that, I graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a Bachelors in Psychology and a minor in Latinx Studies. My research and clinical interests primarily focus on understanding how traumatic stress impacts mental health development for minority youth and young adults. I’m interested in examining resiliency and cultural, familial, and social factors that impact the well-being and academic achievement in minority populations. Finally, I’m interested in culturally-informed, evidenced-based interventions that improve mood and physical symptoms and lead to post-traumatic growth.
Miguel Herrera [He, Him, His]
I am an undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology, while minoring in Photography. I am interested in the systemic and environmental factors that contribute to mood disorders in adolescents and in making interventions in mood disorders more culturally informed and accessible to ethnic minorities and LGBTQ+ youth. I am particularly interested in interventions that operate in a school setting and the expansion of mental health resources in schools. After I graduate, I plan on pursuing a doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology.
Catherine Garcia-Goetting [She, Her, Hers]
I graduated from DePaul University in 2018 with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a concentration in human development, and minors in Latin American and Latino Studies as well as Women and Gender Studies. These fields tie together to provide knowledge and insight into my research interests which are primarily focused on the intersections of people’s lives. Particularly, the influence of cultural and ethnic factors on the mental health and well-being of populations that are not well represented in the field.
Amber Ramos [She, Her, Hers]
I graduated from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2021 with a Bachelor of Science in Clinical-Community Psychology and Spanish. My primary research interests include cultural and familial influences on the development of internalizing disorders in minoritized youth, particularly Latinx youth. I am also interested in culturally-informed interventions at the community level. In the future I hope to further my research by obtaining a doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology.
Ashley Serna [She, Her, Hers]
UNDERGRADUATE RESEARCH ASSISTANTS
I am an undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Political Science with a minor in Spanish. I am very passionate about social and public advocacy, and my research interests include the socio-cultural effects on minority communities. I am from Cleveland, Ohio and chose to attend DePaul University because of the innovative opportunities that Chicago offers that can help me further progress in this field. Most of my work experience is in nonprofit work, but I look forward to expanding my research experience so that I can further develop an understanding around the administration of mental health services and how to make them more accessible to minority communities.
Monica Kronstain [She, Her, Hers]
I am an undergraduate student at DePaul pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Integrative Neuroscience and minors in Mathematics and Chemistry. My research interests are related to how environmental and socio-cultural factors affect mood disorders in adolescents, and the effectiveness of evidence-based, community-centered interventions. I am on a pre-psychiatry track and invested in research on the implementation of mental health services and educational programs in schools. I am passionate about mental health awareness, education, and the accessibility to services in under-resourced communities.
Natalie Perri [She, Her, Hers]