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Student Success


  • Social psychology graduate student, Amber Anthenien, has been awarded an NRSA F31 Fellowship (a three-year award) from the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). The project title is: “Cognitive Dissonance, Social Norms, and Alcohol Use Prevention.”  Amber is advised by Dr. Clayton Neighbors.

  • Congratulations to clinical graduate student, Salome Vanwoerden, who has been awarded a 3-year NRSA F31 Fellowship from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).  The project is entitled, “The Development and Validation of an Observational Coding System for Real-Time Parent-Adolescent Mentalizing.”  Salome is advised by Dr. Carla Sharp.

  • Undergraduate psychology student, Marilyn Sanchez, who works with Dr. Andres Viana  was selected for the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program.  She will be supported by NSF for this 8-week summer research internship on psychophysiology, hosted by Northern Arizona University.

  • Undergraduate Psychology student and Honors College member, Stephen Netzley, advised by Dr. Christiane Spitzmueller, won one of the "best honors thesis awards" at the Honors College Commencement. Stephen is also completing the Quantitative social science minor.

  •  Lorra Garey, a clinical graduate student who works with both Drs. Michael Zvolensky and Clayton Neighbors has received an APA International Conference Registration Grant from APA’s Office of International Affairs.

  • Congrats to social psychology graduate students, Maggie Britton and Sana Haddad!  Each have received a $200 Student Merit Award for the Research Society on Alcoholism (RSA) Scientific meeting in Denver. The award is provided by the NIAAA.  Maggie and Sana are advised by Dr. Jaye Derrick.

  • Congratulations to clinical psychology graduate student, Dan Paulus, who was selected from more than 500 applicants to receive a full tuition scholarship from the Beck Institute to attend their Annual Student and Mental Health Trainee Workshop: CBT for Depression.  Dan is advised by Dr. Michael Zvolensky.

  • Congratulations to Social psychology graduate students, Maggie Britton and Sana Haddad for receiving $500 travel awards to attend the 2017 Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP) Annual Convention in San Antonio in January!  SPSP received 484 applications and 150 were selected for funding.  Maggie and Sana are advised by Dr. Jaye Derrick.


  • Clinical graduate student, Daniel Paulus, has been awarded a 3-year NIH F31 Fellowship, entitled, “Computer-Delivered Personalized Feedback Intervention for Hazardous Drinkers with Elevated Anxiety Sensitivity.”  His sponsor is Dr. Michael Zvolensky.
  • Clinical graduate student, Lorra Garey, has been award a 3-year NIH F31 Fellowship, entitled, “Personalized Feedback for Smokers with Elevated Anxiety Sensitivity.”  Lorra is co-advised by Dr. Michael Zvolensky and Dr. Clayton Neighbors.
  • DCBN graduate student, Emily Barton has been selected as a recipient of a 2016 American Psychological Association Dissertation Research Award. The award of $1,000 is for her dissertation project entitled “How the Alcohol-Damaged Brain Responds to Exercise.” Emily Barton is advised by Dr. Leigh Leasure.

  • Lorra Garey, a graduate student in the clinical psychology program has received a Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology (SSCP) Outstanding Student Researcher Award.

    In addition to a monetary award, information on Lorra’s clinical science interests will be posted on the SSCP website and printed in their newsletter.  Lorra is advised by Drs. Clayton Neighbors and Mike Zvolensky.

  • David Sheppard, a 3rd year graduate student of the Clinical Psychology program has received one of the inaugural student research awards from The Clinical Neuropsychologist and American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology. The award is based on his aging/incident HAND paper and is a significant accomplishment. David is coadvised by Dr. Paul Massman, Director of the Laboratory for Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia Research (LADDeR) and Dr. Steven Woods, Director of the Cognitive Neuropsychology of Daily Life Laboratory (CNDL).

  • Congratulations to Kelly Vaughn, a third-year graduate student in the Laboratory for the Neural Basis of Bilingualism, who received the Graduate International Immigration Research Fellowship from the Center for Immigration Research at the University of Houston. The goal of the fellowship is to promote academic development and highlight diversity at the University of Houston and in the greater Houston community. Vaughn plans to reach out to a local magnet high school for language learning and study how the brain changes in immigrant and non-immigrant high school students as they acquire a foreign language. To do this, she will record students’ brain activity through electroencephalography (EEG) and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) three times during the students’ first year in a foreign language class. Vaughn hopes that the study will inform Houston’s efforts to help all students successfully acquire a foreign language in high school. This is a topic of increasing importance in Houston because high schools recently increased the number of credits for foreign language requirements. Vaughn is advised by Dr. Arturo Hernandez in the Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience program at UH.

  • Social psychology graduate student, Chelsie Young has been recognized as the student of the month for the Association of Behavior and Cognitive Therapies (Addictive Behaviors SIG). Chelsie is advised by Dr. Clayton Neighbors.

  • Congratulations! David Talavera, a 3rd year grad student in Dr. Rheeda L. Walker's Culture, Risk, and Resilience Lab received the 2016 APA Commission on Ethnic Minority Recruitment, Retention and Training (CEMRRAT) Travel Grant

  • Congratulations to clinical psychology graduate student, Katie Reynolds, who has won a Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology (SSCP) dissertation award! Katie is advised by Dr. Candice Alfano.


  • Emily Huston-Warren, a 3rd year graduate student of the Clinical Psychology program was the recipient of the Jeffrey B. Lindeman Memorial Research Award presented by the Houston Neuropsychological Society in November 2015. Emily is a member of the Developmental Neuropsychology Lab group directed by Dr. Paul Cirino.

  • Robyn Douglas, one of our Summer Undergraduate Research Fellows (SURF), has received an Outstanding Poster Award at UH’s Undergraduate Research Day. Her poster was, "The Relation Between Suicidal Ideation, Perceived Burdensomeness, and Financial Stress in Adolescent Inpatients." Robyn’s SURF project was under the direction of Dr. Carla Sharp and clinical graduate student, Claire Hatkevich. Learn more

  • Congratulations to clinical graduate student, Michelle Clementi, who has received the 2015 Texas Psychological Foundation Graduate Research Proposal Award! Michelle is advised by Dr. Candice Alfano.
  • Jennifer Cowie,a clinical graduate student is the recipient of the 2015 Child & Adolescent Anxiety SIG Student Travel Award. The award recognizes her research study entitled, "Parental Involvement in Infant Sleep Routines Predicts Differential Sleep Patterns in Children with and without Anxiety Disorders."  Jennifer will be invited to travel to this year's ABCT convention to present her research at the Child & Adolescent Anxiety SIG Pre-conference Meeting on Thursday, November 12.   Jennifer is advised by Dr. Candice Alfano.

  • Congratulations to social graduate student, Heather Krieger, who has been awarded an NIH F31 Pre-Doctoral Fellowship!  The project is entitled, “A Longitudinal Social Network Analysis and Intervention for Drinking and Health.”  The project sponsor is Dr. Clayton Neighbors. The project is for three years and includes a stipend, partial tuition and fee coverage, and an allowance for research and educational expenses
  • Amanda Venta (graduate student in the Clinical Psychology Program) has received the Paul Baer Research Award. This award is given out each year to the most productive researcher in the Baylor College of Medicine's (BCM) Clinical Psychology Internship program. Amanda's UH advisor is Dr. Carla Sharp.

  • The Department is pleased to announce the following Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program awardees and their mentors:
    • Robyn Douglas – Dr. Carla Sharp
    • Kristina Havens – Dr. Arturo Hernandez
    • Jennie Ho – Dr. Qian Lu
    • Julia Najm – Dr. Candice Alfano

    Each team will receive $3500 award from the UH Office of Undergraduate Research to support the summer research activities of these students.

  • Two of our I/O graduate students – Amanda Palmer and Tiffany Bisbey – won nationally competitive positions as student fellows funded by the Office of Naval Research.

  • Travel awards:

    • Clinical psychology graduate student, Chad Brandt has won a $500 ADAA (Anxiety and Depression Association of America) Travel Award to participate and present at the ADAA annual Conference in April 2015.

    • Clinical psychology graduate student, Lorra Garey has received the College on Problems of Drug Dependence (CPDD) Travel Award for Early Career Investigators.  This award will provide her up to $1000 to travel to the CPDD Annual Meeting on June 13-18 in Phoenix, Arizona. 


  • Chad Brandt, a NIMH Pre-Doctoral Fellow and a graduate student of the clinical psychology program received the David Pilon Scholarship for Training in Professional Psychology. A $1000 scholarship administered by the American Psychological Association of Graduate Students (APAGS) to attend external professional training. Chad also received a full scholarship to attend the 22nd Annual Principles of STD/HIV Research Course at the University of Washington. This was a two-week course specific to research regarding people with HIV and STDs. Chad is a fourth-year graduate student of Dr. Michael Zvolensky’s group.
  • Joseph Burling, a doctorate student in Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience Program, was recently awarded the joint National Science Foundation (NSF) / Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) grant to engage in international collaborations between U.S. and foreign researchers. This award allowed him to conduct research this summer in Kyoto, Japan and experience the academic process in Japan. The collaboration between the Cognitive Development Lab in our program, led by Hanako Yoshida and the Applied Intelligence Information Processing group at Kyoto University, led by Professor Toyoaki Nishida, involved developing cutting edge techniques in eye tracking research.

    This new approach analyzes corneal reflections using computer vision algorithms on super resolution eye images, and has the potential to significantly reduce the complexities involved in obtaining accurate and precise data under depth-varying conditions. The implementation is particularly useful for understanding the role of attention during the early stages of child development.
  • Samantha Farris, a fourth-year clinical psychology doctoral student was awarded with a Dissertation Completion Fellowship from the University of Houston College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. The funds were set up by a Houston Endowment grant of $5 million to support doctoral education at the University of Houston. The award provides monetary support and releases the awardee from teaching responsibilities for the 2014-2015 academic year in order to facilitate completion of dissertation research.