Current Graduate Students
Kathleen Baggett: Current Student
Callie Burt: Current Student
Caitlin Dorsch, B.A., Criminology
Caitlin Dorsch is a doctoral student in the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology at Georgia State University. She holds a B.A. in criminology from the University of Lynchburg. While at Lynchburg, she was a facilitator for the One Love Foundation Escalation Workshop and was involved in the StepUp! Bystander Intervention Program. Her research interests include the victimization of understudied populations and the evaluation of policies and programs using statistical analyses.
Leah Daigle: Current Students
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.
Nashalys K. Salamanca, B.A., Psychology and Women’s Studies
Nashalys K. Salamanca is a doctoral student in the Clinical-Community Psychology program. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Women’s Studies from Muhlenberg College. Before joining Dr. Amanda Gilmore’s lab, Nashalys worked in various research and practice settings, including at Stanford University, disseminating evidence-based programs to over 250 schools and colleges nationwide. She has served as a longtime volunteer at Caminar Latino, an Atlanta-area domestic violence organization serving Latinx families. These experiences sparked her research interests in applying an ecological and intersectional framework to the treatment and prevention of interpersonal violence.
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.
Dennis Reidy: Current Student
Bre Edison, MPH, School of Public Health
Bre Edison is pursuing her PhD at Georgia State University’s School of Public Health in the department of Health Promotion and Behavior. As a graduate research assistant under the mentorship of Drs. Dennis Reidy and Katherine Masyn, she primarily works with violence prevention in adolescent populations. Her research interests are in sexual health communication and education specifically in racial/ethnic and sexual and gender minorities for adolescents and young adults. She has previous employment and research experience in clinical trials working as a Parkinson’s Disease research coordinator with the Movement Disorders Neurology department at the University of Pittsburgh. She also received her master’s degree in Public Health from the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health in 2018, with a concentration in management, intervention, and community practice of infectious diseases. Her undergraduate studies were completed at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she majored in Exercise Science and minored in Biology and Medical Anthropology.
Camille Kordas, BS, Nutrition and Dietetics, BA French Studies
Camille is pursuing her Masters of Public Health with a concentration in Health Behavior & Promotion from Georgia State University. She earned bachelor’s degrees in Nutrition & Dietetics and French Studies from Andrews University. As a graduate research assistant for Dr. Dennis Reidy, Camille assists with projects related to sexual violence prevention in adolescent populations. Her research interests include reproductive and sexual health, and sexual violence prevention.
Ronyell Jones, BS, Psychology
Ronyell Jones is pursuing his Master’s of Public Health with a concentration in Epidemiology from Georgia State University. Ronyell holds a B.S. in psychology from Kennesaw State University. As a graduate research assistant for Dr. Dennis Reidy, Ronyell works on projects associated with violence prevention in adolescent populations. He also currently works in data management on the COVID-19 response team for the Georgia Department of Public Health. His research interests include adverse childhood experiences, violence prevention, and advancing health equity among the black community.
Grace S. Liu, MPH, School of Public Health
Grace Liu is a doctoral student in the Epidemiology program at Georgia State University’s School of Public Health. She has spent much of her career examining the influence of norms and attitudes on individual behavior, public perception of public health issues, and general understanding of and support for prevention efforts. She is particularly interested in identifying and addressing structural and social drivers of violence among LGBTQ+ communities and racial/ethnic minorities. Currently, as an Epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (NCIPC), Grace conducts research on violent deaths among sexual and gender minorities and targeted interpersonal violence motivated by hate and/or prejudice. Grace looks forward to advancing her academic training in epidemiological theories and applied methods to better evaluate community- and societal-level influences of violence and inform norms change approaches to violence prevention and health equity. She holds a Master of Public Health degree in Epidemiology from the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health.
Laura Salazar: Current Student
Zainab G. Nizam, MPH, School of Public Health
Zainab Nizam is a third-year doctoral student and a Second Century Initiative Fellow in the School of Public Health. They graduated from Emory University with a B.S. in Neuroscience in 2014 and an MPH in Behavioral Science 2016. During their MPH, they worked at the Grady Ponce de Leon Center with Dr. Andres Camacho-Gonzalez on a clinical trial incorporating motivational interviewing techniques in treatment and linkage to care plans for HIV-positive adolescent MSM. Following their MPH, they worked as a Fellow in the Public Health Associate Program at CDC from 2016-2018. Zainab is interested in how gender and sex categorization are used in the discipline of Public Health, and how queer and feminist frameworks can be employed to disrupt the manifestation and reification of hegemonic power structures in Public Health surveillance and research. Currently, they are working as a Graduate Research Assistant with Dr. Laura Salazar and leading a study looking at the sexual violence experiences of queer-identifying individuals. They also teach an undergraduate Public Health seminar course called “Controversies in Public Health” in which students critically examine some of the ways in which the discipline of Public Health reproduces and disrupts systemic oppression.
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
Manderley Recinos is a doctoral student in the School of Public Health with a focus on Health Promotion. She received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Psychology from Augusta University. During her masters, she interned at the Institute of Public and Preventive Health where she worked on a project examining the integration of a mobile health app into evidence-based interventions aimed at preventing child maltreatment and treating child maltreatment symptomatology. Manderley’s research interests include prevention programs for child maltreatment, physiological effects of emotional abuse, intergenerational trauma, and treatments for child maltreatment such as TF-CBT.
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.
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
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.
Olivia Westemeier, B.S., Psychology
Olivia Westemeier is in the Clinical-Community Psychology PhD program. She received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a minor in Rhetoric from the University of Iowa in 2021. At Iowa, she assisted in developing protective behavioral strategies to reduce sexually aggressive behavior; and worked with Iowa’s Anti-Violence Coalition to collaborate on university policy, system response, and prevention programming for campus sexual violence. Her primary topics of interest are how event-level and psychological mechanisms act as risk or protective factors for sexually aggressive behavior and integrates various theories and methods within clinical, social, and cognitive psychology. She is also interested in how bridging basic-and applied-level acquaintance-initiated sexual assault research can inform sexual perpetration prevention programming.
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.