As a pre-doctoral psychology intern, I am responsible for providing psychosocial support for patients and families affected by cancer. This includes patients across the continuum of cancer care, from diagnosis to treatment and through survivorship and bereavement. In my work, I seek to address the unique and varied stressors that present throughout the cancer experience. The psychosocial support I offer can take many forms, including individual support, group support, consultation as part of the UCLA medical team, and outreach for the Simms/Mann center. At the same time, as a student, I value the opportunity to learn from my supervisors, colleagues, and the patients I encounter in this setting.
I received my B.S. in Applied Psychology from New York University in 2009. Near the end of my undergraduate career, I obtained an internship as a research affiliate at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK), and over time, I was hired there as a research study assistant and eventually promoted to the role of clinical research coordinator (CRC). While at MSK, I assisted with a variety of studies, including a randomized controlled trial of an expressive writing intervention for patients with metastatic breast cancer and a community-based participatory research project to enhance the capacity of AIDS service organizations to address their clients’ cancer needs. As a CRC, I oversaw the day-to-day operations of a number of studies for the psychotherapy lab. These studies sought to develop and test existentially-focused psychotherapeutic interventions for a variety of populations, including patients with advanced cancer, cancer caregivers, and bereaved parents.
In 2014, I was admitted to the Clinical Science doctoral program at the University of Southern California. In Dr. Darby Saxbe’s Neuroendocrinology of Social Ties (NEST) Lab and Dr. Gayla Margolin’s Family Studies Lab, I study how a sense of meaning and purpose in life can help couples cope with and adjust to difficult life events and transitions. I am particularly interested in how couples navigate cancer and loss. I am also working toward my MPH with a focus in biostatistics and epidemiology. Clinically, I have worked in the community clinic on USC’s campus, receiving training in neuropsychology and in working therapeutically with children, families, couples, and older adults. I have also completed an externship at White Memorial Medical Center, working as part of an interdisciplinary team of physicians, psychologists, psychiatrists, social workers, pharmacists, and physical and occupational therapists to address the psychosocial needs of patients in a Skilled Nursing Facility.
Personal Interests and Perspectives
Before moving to New York, I was raised outside of Philadelphia, and I’m a huge Eagles fan. In line with that, I spend a lot of my time outside of work watching (not playing, unless you count wasting time setting my fantasy lineup) football, basketball, hockey, and more, and I love to catch a live game at the Staples Center or the Coliseum (fight on). Before switching to psychology, I attended NYU for film studies, and I still enjoy a good movie or TV show. I also love music and concerts (the Hollywood Palladium is a favorite here in LA), and I enjoy traveling, having made recent trips to Japan, France, and Australia.