Current Graduate Students
Kathleen Baggett: Current Student
Brooke DiPetrillo, MPH, Doctoral student, Health Promotion and Behavior, School of Public Health
Brooke DiPetrillo is a doctoral student in the school of Public Health in the Division of Health Promotion and Behavior at Georgia State University. She was awarded a doctoral fellowship and works as a GRA on Dr. Baggett’s NIH R01 study: Reducing Maternal Depression and Promoting Infant Social-Emotional Health and Development. Brooke obtained her MPH from GSU in 2011. Her research interests include child maltreatment prevention, maternal stress and depression, responsive parenting and the use of technology to promote and capture data on behavior change.
Leah Daigle: Current Students
Shanna Felix, M.A., Criminal Justice and Criminology
Shanna Felix is a doctoral student in the department of Criminal Justice and Criminology at Georgia State University. She holds a Master’s and Bachelor’s degree from Georgia Southern University. Her research interests include victimization, particularly as it relates to the LGBT community. Her most recent publications have appeared in Violence and Gender and Journal of Family Strengths.
Katelyn Hancock, M.S., Criminal Justice
Katelyn Hancock is a doctoral student at Georgia State University in the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology. She holds a B.A. in psychology from Tennessee Tech University, in her hometown of Cookeville, Tennessee, and a M.S. in criminal justice from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. During her master’s program at UTC, she had the opportunity to work as a graduate assistant liaison for the Tommy Burks Victim Assistance Academy. Her research interests are focused in the area of victimization, particularly as it relates to intimate partner violence and sexual assault.
Travis C. Chafin, B.S., Criminal Justice & Criminology
Travis C. Chafin is a doctoral student at Georgia State University in the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology. Travis holds a B.S. in psychology from Kennesaw State University. He will complete his M.S. in criminal justice and criminology Fall of 2020 while beginning his doctoral studies. His research interests include psychological traits of offenders and victims along with developmental theory.
Xiangming Fang: Current Student
Marie Parker, PharmD, MPH, BCPS, School of Public Health
Marie Parker is a doctoral student in the School of Public Health at Georgia State University. She has spent much of her career in population health management, with a focus on the development, implementation, and evaluation of population-based healthcare quality improvement activities. At present, she is Director of Population Health and Quality Performance with Kaiser Permanente in Atlanta, GA where she leads population health, case management, and patient safety strategies aimed to improve the quality of care for members and the broader metro Atlanta community. Her research interests include chronic disease prevention and management, socials determinants of health, and health economics and policy. She is a board-certified pharmacist, having completed her PharmD at the University of Georgia in 2005 and subsequent community pharmacy practice residency at the University of Kentucky in 2006 and MPH degree Health Outcomes in 2011 from the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University.
Amanda Gilmore: Current Students
Alyssa Bartlett, Graduate Research Assistant
Alyssa Bartlett is second-year Master in Public Health candidate concentrating in biostatistics. She graduated from Georgia State University with a Bachelors of Science in Neuroscience in 2016. As an undergraduate student, she worked under Dr. Kevin Swartout investigating sexual violence perpetration among college-aged men. As a graduate researcher, she works on the development of multiple sexual assault interventions and is currently completing her master’s thesis on factors associated with suicidal behavior after a recent sexual assault using data collected from sexual assault medical forensic exams in the emergency department.
Kennicia Fortson, B.S., School of Public Health
Kennicia Fortson is a doctoral student in the School of Public Health in the Health Promotion and Behavior concentration at Georgia State University. She holds a BS in Biology and BS in Psychology which she earned from the University of Georgia in 2016. She also completed graduate studies at the University of Georgia, earning her Master of Public Health and Master of Social Work in 2019. Her capstone project was an original research study examining the relationship between adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and risk for opioid misuse. Kennicia’s research interests include child and adolescent health, racial/ethnic health disparities, community health, and early life stress/trauma. She is also interested in learning more about technology-based intervention and prevention methods. She will be joining the Alcohol and Sexual Assault Lab as a GRA, working under the direction of Dr. Amanda Gilmore.
Jessica Prince, B.S., Clinical-Community program
Jessica Prince is a doctoral student in the Clinical-Community program at Georgia State University. She received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 2018. Upon graduating, she worked as a research coordinator at the University of Michigan, Injury Prevention Center on a randomized control trial aiming to reduce violence and alcohol consumption among high risk youth. Her research interests are broadly in 1) primary and secondary prevention programs for reducing substance use and violence and 2) implementing technology-based interventions to reduce barriers to access among under-resourced communities.
Tehnyat Sohail, B.S., Public Health—Community Psychology dual program
Tehnyat Sohail is a doctoral student in the Public Health and Community Psychology dual-degree program with a concentration in Health Promotion and Behavior at Georgia State University. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Georgia State University in 2020. After graduation, she worked as a research assistant under the supervision of Dr. Cari Jo Clark at Emory University, studying gender-based violence in low-resource settings to empower individuals to adopt healthy behaviors through risk-reduction practices and women’s and girls’ empowerment. Additionally, she worked on Dr. Kevin Swartout’s Violence Against Women Prevention Team at Georgia State University, studying sexual health literacy of refugee populations in Atlanta and dating violence prevention among college students. Tehnyat’s research interests aim to investigate sexual violence prevention in marginalized communities in low-resource settings. Specifically, she is interested to see if violence perpetration manifests differently in these communities based on sociocultural factors. She is also interested in learning more about how to effectively disseminate and implement research to prevent violence at a local and global level. Tehnyat will be joining the Alcohol and Sexual Assault Lab led by Dr. Amanda Gilmore.
Ruschelle Leone: Current Students
Dominic Parrott: Current Students
Jessica L. Grom, M.S., Clinical Psychology Program
Jessica L. Grom received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and in International Politics (National Security Option) from The Pennsylvania State University and a Master’s of Science in Psychology from Villanova University. Her Master’s thesis was completed under the direction of Dr. Erica Slotter and investigated whether self-control and attachment anxiety predicted intimate partner violence and displaced aggression. She is currently a doctoral student in Clinical Psychology at Georgia State University. Her research interests include identifying risk and protective factors for alcohol-facilitated intimate partner violence.
Kevin Moino received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology in Psychology with College and Departmental Honors from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2015. As an undergraduate he was awarded the Ronald E. McNair Research Scholars Fellowship, which funded his thesis examining the ways in which race-based stereotypes affect the attribution of sexual orientation in gay men of color. After graduation, he worked as a research associate at the UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse Programs, where he managed multiple NIH-funded projects examining the effects of substance abuse on a variety of health outcomes. He is currently a graduate student at Georgia State University in the Clinical Psychology program. He is interested in researching how prejudice and stereotypes manifest into behaviors (including aggression and discrimination) that lead to health disparities in marginalized populations.
Caleigh Shepard, B.A., Clinical Psychology Program
Caleigh Shepard graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Rhodes College in 2017. After graduation, Caleigh began work at the University of Arizona in the Social, Cognitive, and Affective Neuroscience (SCAN) Lab as part of their trauma research unit. There she researched racial disparities regarding PTSD symptom presentation and treatment efficacy. Caleigh then moved to Boston to join The Fenway Institute to aid in research aimed at improving healthcare and health outcomes for the LGBTQ+ population. She is currently a graduate student at Georgia State University, earning her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. She is interested researching intimate partner violence in sexual minority couples, as well as how traditional gender roles engender violence against women and the LGBTQ+ community.
Brynne A. Velia, B.S., Clinical Psychology Program
Brynne A. Velia graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Stony Brook University in 2017. After graduation, she worked as a research coordinator in Dr. Catharine Fairbairn’s Alcohol Research Lab at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Through running a large-scale alcohol-administration study, she had the opportunity to examine how alcohol’s socially reinforcing effects may contribute to problematic drinking patterns, and how these effects extend to real-world settings. She is currently a graduate student at Georgia State University, earning her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. Brynne is interested in researching how the interplay of societal- (e.g., discrimination, aggression) and individual-level (e.g., internalized homophobia) factors contributes to the development of alcohol use disorder among sexual minorities.
Laura Salazar: Current Student
Shannon Self-Brown: Current Students
Elizabeth W. Perry, MPH, School of Public Health
Elizabeth (Liz) is a doctoral student in the School of Public Health concentrating in Health Promotion and Behavior. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Kennesaw State University and a Master in Public Health from Georgia State University. After graduating from KSU and while completing her MPH, Liz worked as a Sexual Assault Victim Advocate for Day League’s Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner program. Liz’s research interests center around child maltreatment prevention, adolescent trauma, and implementation science to research ways to effectively increase the reach of evidence-based programs in low-resourced areas in low- and middle-income countries.
Manderley Recinos, School of Public Health
Katherine Reuben, B.S., School of Public Health
Katherine Reuben received a B.S. in Psychology from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2018. Her undergraduate senior thesis was on trauma and dissociation in autism spectrum disorders. Additionally, she is working on a study related to therapy experiences for adult trauma survivors with complex dissociative disorders. Katherine is interested in researching developmental disability as a potential disparity in risk and treatment of childhood interpersonal violence, dissociation as an outcome of trauma, and commercial sexual exploitation of children. She is currently a graduate student in the Georgia State University Public Health program.
Chini Sheth, B.S., School of Public Health
Chini Sheth is a second year Master in Public Health candidate concentrating in Health Management and Policy. She received her B.S. in Psychology and minor in Public Health from the University of Georgia. During her time at the University of Georgia and prior to starting her master’s degree, Chini worked in logistic roles for Volunteers Around the World, and volunteered with a Professor from UGA in projects which centered around nutrition and wellness for older adults in the Athens region. Chini is currently a Graduate Research Assistant for the National SafeCare Training Research Center. Her research interests include maternal and child health, minority health, and the intersection of public health and medical care.
Ashley E. N. Watson, MPH, School of Public Health
Ashley Watson is a Second Century Initiative University Doctoral Fellow in the Health Disparities in Developmental Disabilities Cluster. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology from Georgia State University. As an undergraduate student, Ms. Watson became a published Ronald E. McNair Scholar and a member of the Georgia State University Honors College. During her master’s program, her research focused on child outcomes based on parental behavior. Ms. Watson’s current research interests include the identification of risk and protective factors in victims of abuse. She is currently working as a Graduate Research Assistant in the Department of Health Promotion and Behavior in the School of Public Health under the tutelage of Dr. Shannon Self-Brown.
Cynthia Stappenbeck: Current Students
Brennah Ross, B.S., Clinical/Community Psychology Program
Brennah Ross is currently a doctoral student in Georgia State University’s Clinical and Community Psychology program. She graduated with a B.S. in Economics from The College of New Jersey, and later completed a psychology post-bacc at Villanova University. Prior to graduate school, she worked at Temple University coordinating studies on anxiety treatment including an NIH-funded clinical trial. Brennah is interested in interdisciplinary research that aims to improve psychological outcomes for victims of sexual violence.
Anna Peddle, B.S., Clinical/Community Psychology Program
Anna Peddle is a doctoral student in Georgia State University’s Clinical-Community Psychology program. She earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Furman University in 2018. Prior to joining Dr. Cynthia Stappenbeck’s lab at GSU, she worked as a clinical research coordinator at the University of Minnesota on a project investigating subgroups within opioid use disorder. She has previously completed supervised research projects that span the topics of trait-level mindfulness, externalizing behavior and IQ, and social support in addiction. Anna has also worked in inpatient psychiatric settings with adolescents and adults with domestic and sexual violence histories, substance use disorders, and self-harm behaviors. At GSU, Anna is interested in researching novel and evidence-based interventions for substance-abusing populations and victims of domestic and sexual violence.
Kevin Swartout: Current Students
Robyn Borgman, M.A., Community Psychology Program
Robyn Borgman is a doctoral student in Georgia State University’s Community Psychology Program. Robyn earned her M.A. in Psychology from Georgia State University in 2017 and her B.A. in Psychology from Georgia State University in 2012. Her research interests include violence against women prevention and substance abuse and misuse prevention and intervention. Specifically, she is interested in the ways in which exposure to violent media impact sexual violence and violence against women, and the ways in which community context impacts substance use and violence against women. Robyn is currently working on a series of studies investigating the mechanisms by which violence in video games impacts negative attitudes and aggressive behaviors toward women. Robyn is also currently investigating the ways in which various neighborhood characteristics influence a person’s experiences with violence and substance use.
Wojciech Kaczkowski, M.A., Community Psychology Program
Wojciech Kaczkowski is a doctoral candidate in Community Psychology at Georgia State University. He has earned his M.A. in Psychology at Wake Forest University, and his B.A. in Philosophy and B.S. in Psychology from the University of Georgia. Before enrolling at Georgia State, he also worked as a project manager for John Templeton Foundation’s Life Paths Research Program in Sewanee, Tennessee. His research interests focus on social and cultural factors that contribute to the development of violent behaviors and attitudes. Specifically, he is interested in examining risk and protective factors for gender-based violence and radicalization into violent extremism, as well as the relationship between these two forms of violent behavior. Some of the research projects that he is currently involved in include the study of the use of images of children in Islamic State propaganda, the qualitative analysis of first-hand narratives of sexual violence perpetration, and the bystander intervention in situations involving sexual aggression.
Daniel J. Lanni, M.S., Clincial/Community Psychology
Daniel Lanni received his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science at Oakland University in Psychology in 2016 and 2019, respectively. Currently, Daniel is a doctoral student in Georgia State University’s Clinical and Community Psychology program. He is interested in the relationship between alcohol use, emotion regulation, motivations, attitudes, and sexual assault perpetration. Additionally, he is also interested in social norm-based interventions as a means to reduce sexual violence.
Yamini Patel is a doctoral student in the Community and Public Health program. Yamini graduated from Georgia State University in 2018 with a B.S. in Psychology, and her research interests include community level approaches to violence against women intervention and prevention. Specifically, Yamini is interested in community-based programs that target gender biases, power imbalances, and sexual violence perpetration.
Samantha Sabin, B.S., Community Psychology Program
Samantha Sabin is a doctoral student in Community Psychology at Georgia State University. Sam graduated from Reinhardt University with a B.S. in Psychology in 2014. Sam’s research interests include violence against women prevention and sexual violence prevention. Specifically, she is interested in how exposure to violent and sexist content in media shape attitudes about sexual violence. She is currently working on a project exploring the effects of violent and sexist video games on players’ perceptions of violence against women. Her ultimate research goal is to produce work that will influence policies related to video game content and sexual violence prevention.
Rebecca Wilson, M.A., Community Psychology Program
Rebecca Wilson is a doctoral student in the Community Psychology program at Georgia State University. Rebecca graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Drama/Theatre from the University of Montana. She toured with multiple Reparatory Theatre companies performing in plays like My Children, My Africa, Waiting For Godot, and The Laramie Project. Her tour with My Children, My Africa included traveling to underserved communities and Native American reservations discussing community issues of social justice, oppression, and response and prevention strategies. She moved to Chicago where she completed her Master of Arts in counseling and rehabilitation psychology. She worked at Cook County Jail under the direction of Dr. Doreen Salina and Dr. Nancy Soros as a part of the Cook County Sheriff’s Justice Services researching violence against women prevention strategies as well as providing individual and group mental health assessment and treatment. She continued to work for Dr. Leonard Jason at DePaul’s Center for Community Psychology examining violence prevention strategies for African American youth and barriers to recovery for women in the criminal justice system. Rebecca’s research interests include: Examining social norms supporting sexual violence, public health and economic policy approaches to violence prevention, as well as varieties of patriarchy and violence against women. Additionally, she is interested in insurgent group behavior, how social movements become violent, the impact of conflict on women, and the use of sexual violence as a weapon of war.
Kamilla Bonnesen, Community Psychology and Public Health dual degree program
Kamilla is a doctoral students in the Community and Public Health Program in the Division of Epidemiology. She received her honours B.Sc in the Psychology from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland. Her research interests include violence against women prevention and cross-cultural initiatives to target violence prevention and intervention collaboratively. Additionally, she is also interested in sociopolitical barriers to effective sexual violence prevention and intervention.
Daniel Whitaker: Current Students
Olivia Randall-Kosich, B.S., M.H.A., School of Public Health
Olivia Randall-Kosich is a doctoral student and Second Century Initiative (2CI) Fellow in the School of Public Health. Prior to attending Georgia State University, Olivia earned a B.S. in Psychology and a Masters in Health Administration (M.H.A.) from the University of Central Florida (UCF). Her research interests center around substance use disorder (SUD) prevalence, treatment, and policy, especially regarding access to medication-assisted treatment for opioid use disorder. As a research assistant for the National SafeCare Training and Research Center, Olivia is interested in the intersection between parental substance use and child maltreatment.