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Psychology News

Date: Sep 2020

Hi, everyone! I’m Dr. Marie McGrath, the newest addition to the Stevenson University Psychology faculty.

Marie McGrath

I’m a licensed psychologist and certified school psychologist (in Pennsylvania currently, and hopefully in Maryland soon). I hold a Ph.D. in School Psychology from Temple University. Prior to coming to Stevenson, I spent 16 years at Immaculata University in Pennsylvania, where I served as a faculty member in the doctoral program in Clinical Psychology and the master’s/specialist program in School Psychology. At Stevenson, I’ll be directing the new Psy.D. program in Clinical Psychology, which will admit its first class for Fall 2021.

Check out our Clinical Psychology (PsyD Program) here!

This semester, I’m teaching PSY 101 and PSY 108. In my free time, I enjoy spending time with my family, friends, and my cat Percy; cooking; reading; and crafting. I’m excited to get to know you and am happy to answer any questions that you might have about graduate school in general, and our new Psy.D. program in particular!

During the Spring 2020 semester, Psychology Junior Angel Longus applied for the highly competitive summer research program offered by the Research Experiences for Undergraduates program of the National Science Foundation. Angel was selected to intern at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB) together with five other undergraduate students. Because of COVID-19, Angel completed the program remotely. Below is an interview that we had with Angel.

Angel Longus 1 

What projects did you work on during this program?

I was involved in multiple projects, such as Talking College and Speech-Language Pathology (SLP). I also conducted my own research project. I worked with graduate student DeAndre Miles-Hercules from the Department of Linguistics at UCSB.

That sounds fascinating! Could you tell me more about your research project?

Titled “Searching the Silences: Black Discourse on Mental Health," my project aims to examine the Black community's tendency to dismiss or minimize issues related to mental illnesses. I interviewed several family members and friends, and then analyzed their interviews to explore the major themes. This project was especially important because the Black community is at a greater risk of mental health concerns. Oftentimes, this goes back to the lack of access to mental health care, prejudice and racism inherent in the daily lives of Black individuals, and the historical trauma enacted on the Black community by the medical field. I presented the results of my project at the Annual Advancing African American Linguistics Symposium. This symposium hosted webinars on the professional experiences of African American linguists including publication, tenure, promotion, and strengthening the network of scholars who study African American language, literacy, and culture.

Congratulations! That is a huge accomplishment! Could you tell me about the SLP project you mentioned earlier?

Sure! For this project, I was responsible for interviewing several speech-language pathologists to see how race has played a part in their careers. I analyzed the data and presented my work titled "Understanding the Experiences of Black Speech-Language Pathologists Across the Professional Trajectory" at the same Symposium.

Do you have any suggestions for students who are interested in applying to this research program? 

I would say check out UCSB HBCU program. I have learned so much during this summer and would highly recommend students to check this website out. I am also sure that there will be similar programs offered in the future so always keep an eye out!

During the Spring 2020 semester, Psychology Senior Lauren Wright applied for the competitive summer research program offered by the National Science Foundation. Lauren's application was accepted and was offered to work at Purdue University as well as University of Texas at Austin, which are both top research institutes in our country. 

Lauren Wright

Lauren Wright

Although both opportunities ended up being cancelled because of COVID-19, Lauren continued to stay in touch with the researchers of the two programs and was accepted by both of these schools' graduate programs. In order to be best prepared for these amazing opportunities, Lauren took the time to learn more about research and eventually got connected with Dr. Frank Worrell of University of California, Berkeley. Following their conversation, Lauren was even offered a chance to be mentored by Dr. Worrell in grad school. This is simply amazing!

What can fellow students learn from Lauren's story? First, it is interesting to see how one opportunity often leads to other opportunities. For Lauren, these opportunities came about because of her decision to apply for the research opportunity at National Science Foundation. Second, always be prepared and do not be afraid to reach out to others. It is through these conversations with the researchers that Lauren gets to introduce herself and learn about their work.

It is important to note that Lauren is working very hard during her undergraduate career at Stevenson. Besides keeping an outstanding GPA and research record, Lauren is going into her second year serving as a Teaching Support for Dr. Spada’s Writing for Psychology course. Overall, Lauren has been incredibly grateful for all the experiences, opportunities, and guidance she has gained from working with the Psychology department at Stevenson University.

 
 
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