make your own website


Deborah Qu

I am a PhD student in the Social-Personality area, working with Dr. Oz Ayduk of RASCL and Dr. Oliver P. John of the EER Lab. I graduated from the University of California, Berkeley in 2023 with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. My research focuses on automating cognitive change strategies and exploring how agreeableness and other personality factors affect emotional responses. I am broadly interested in emotion regulation, mixed-valence emotions, and examining how habitual tendencies can influence emotional responding.

Research Interests: emotion, emotion regulation, personality, coping

Click here to view my CV.

Maria Luciani

I am a second-year doctoral student in the Social-Personality Psychology Area at UC Berkeley. My current work with Dr. Ozlem Ayduk and Dr. Serena Chen explores romantic relationships, intellectual humility, emotion regulation, sleep, and authenticity. I received my B.A. in Psychology and Spanish from the University of Michigan in 2020, after which I stayed on at Michigan as a lab manager for Dr. Amie Gordon’s Well-being, Health, and Interpersonal Relationships Lab. Ongoing projects with Dr. Gordon investigate political differences in romantic relationships and misperceptions of political others’ values.

Research Interests: Interpersonal relationships, emotion regulation, well-being, identity

Click here to view my CV.

Alejandro Campero-Oliart

Originally from La Paz, Bolivia, I am a second-year doctoral student and Chancellor’s Fellow at the University of California, Berkeley. Leading up to obtaining my bachelor’s degree in psychology from Shepherd University (WV), I attended two community colleges in Maryland, becoming a student-athlete in the process after successfully competing for an athletic scholarship to play soccer. My time in community college positioned me well to access pivotal academic and athletic scholarships to afford my studies at a four-year institution. After graduating from Shepherd, I continued my independent research as a post-bac there while working full time to build economic stability for graduate studies. Thanks largely to my year-long work as a post-bac, I then transitioned to American University (Washington D.C) with graduate-support funds, where I obtained my master’s degree in Social-Personality Psychology before transitioning here.

Research Interests: Interpersonal communication and emotion, psychophysiology, culture- identity-interactions, intersectionality, personality perception and development.

Click here to view my CV.

Sierra Semko

I received my B.A. in Psychology from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio before moving to the Bay Area to work in Dr. Wendy Berry Mendes's Emotion, Health and Psychophysiology Lab. Currently, I am a Ph.D. student in Social/Personality Psychology at Berkeley. My work with Dr. Mendoza-Denton and Dr. Jason Okonofua explores the impact of bias (socioeconomic, racial, and gender) on interactions between patients/healthcare providers and student/teachers, as well as the downstream effects in health and discipline. My work also involves the development of psychological interventions to improve outcomes in healthcare and education.

Research Interests: Stigma, bias, intergroup relations, interventions, education, health

Click here to view my CV.

Nirupika Sharma

I completed my undergraduate degree in psychology and business studies at New York University (NYU). Upon graduating, I worked at the West Interpersonal Perception and Trope labs at NYU, followed by a lab manager position with Dr. Ana Gantman at Brooklyn College. Currently, as a PhD student in social-personality, I am interested in code-switching, cultural uniqueness, self, identity, and shared reality. I work with Drs. Serena Chen, Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton, and Ozlem Ayduk.

Research Interests: Code-switching, authenticity, self, identity, culture, intergroup relations, shared reality

Tyrone Sgambati

I am currently a Ph.D. student in the Social-Personality Psychology program here at Berkeley, working primarily in RASCL and the Berkeley Social Interaction Lab (BSIL). Before coming here, I completed my B.S. in psychology, cognitive science, and philosophy at the University of Michigan, where I worked in the Emotion and Self-Control lab directed by Professor Ethan Kross. Currently, my research focuses on intellectual humility and explaining the relationship between psychedelics and well-being. I am also interested in emotion-regulation.

Research Interests: Intellectual humility, psychedelics, emotion-regulation, social networks

Click here to view my CV.

Lindsey Burnside

As a PhD Candidate in the Social/Personality area I work primarily with Dr. Rodolfo Mendoza-Denton of RASCL and Dr. Iris Mauss of EER Lab. My current work focuses on contextual factors of racism-related stress and coping; and segregation. I earned my Bachelor's degree in Biopsychology, Cognition and Neuroscience from the University of Michigan. Prior to graduate school I also worked as a research associate at the Institute for Social Research in the BioSocial Methods Collaborative and the Social Environment and Health program.

Research Interests: Social stress, health equity, well-being, segregation, hegemony, psychophysiology

Rosalinda Nava

I am currently a PhD student in the Social/Personality Psychology program. I earned my BA in Psychology at UC Berkeley and worked at the Lawrence Hall of Science’s Research Group just prior to attending Cal for my PhD. At the Lawrence Hall of Science I did work in the evaluation of STEM Education and Informal Learning programs. My current work focuses on the experiences of undergraduates, especially first generation students. I am particularly interested in understanding the different forms of social support that students receive, and how that support impacts achievement. I also do work on psychedelics, culture, and emotion regulation.

Research Interests: Education, first generation students, culture, emotion regulation, psychedelics.

Mari Knuth-Bouracee

As a fourth-year doctoral student in UC Berkeley’s Social Psychology program, my research focuses on the violence prevention, social norms, and equity in education and employment contexts. I’m particularly interested in norms-based interventions, within the context of intra-racial groups, to enhance prosociality and equity. I earned a master’s degree in higher education and student development at Bowling Green State University and a bachelor’s in human development at Boston College.

Click here to view my CV.