Dean's Graduate Student Advisory Council: Members
Department of Anthropology
Valerie Hall is a doctoral candidate in Anthropology. She is a 1997 graduate of the Pennsylvania State University with a BS in Education and taught at the elementary level before becoming interested in archaeology. She received her MA in Anthropology and Archaeology from the Illinois State University in 2012. Her research interests include exploring human-animal relationships, engendered tasks, and landscape change in the Chesapeake region through analysis of archaeofaunal remains and other proxy data. She is specifically interested in the use of stable isotope analysis and geometric morphometrics as tools to elucidate cultural and environmental shifts.
Kimberly is a second-year Master’s student in Applied Anthropology. Her research currently focuses on social-ecological systems complexity, interaction, and policy, local environmental knowledge (also referred to as traditional or indigenous knowledge), and sustainable development. She is also a practicing attorney and senior policy analyst, with 30 years' experience in public international and federal law, including work in human rights and environmental issues. In addition to law, her educational background includes graduate wprl in organizational development and public administration, and specialized training in mediation and managing change.
Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice
Jocelyn is a third-year Ph.D. students in the Criminology and Criminal Justice Department. She received her bachelor's degrees in criminology, psychology, and social ecology from UC Irvine in 2021. Joce's current research interests include gender, white collar and corporate crime, environmental regulations, and determinants of group-based offending.
Carly is a second-year Master's student in CCJS. She received her B.A. in Criminology and Criminal Justice from the University of Maryland in 2020. Carly's current research interests include juvenile justice, victimization, and victim/survivor rights and justice.
"Sara-Laure is a PhD candidate in the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice at the University of Maryland (UMD). She came to the US from Ottawa, Canada. Prior to starting her studies at UMD, she earned her B.A. and M.S. in criminology at the University of Pennsylvania. In addition to serving on DGSAC, Sara-Laure has served on the International Student Advisory Board and the Campus Safety Advisory Council. "
Michael is a third-year Ph.D. student in CCJS. He received his bachelor's degree in criminology and criminal justice, and psychology from the University of Maryland in 2019. Michael’s current research interests are centered around substance use, group violence, adolescent development, childhood victimization, and the evolution of peer networks throughout the life-course.
Jessica is a second-year master's student in CCJS. She completed her bachelor's degrees in criminology and women's studies at Penn State University in 2022, with minors in English and sociology. Her core research interest is queer criminology, in addition to gender and sexuality relations and dynamics in prison. She has spent time studying domestic violence in minority populations as well, and looks forward to continuing that work.
Department of Economics
Andrea is a third-year Ph.D. student in the UMD Department of Economics. She received her MA in Economics from the Universidad del Pacifico (Lima, Peru) in 2019, and her current research interests include international finance and macroeconomics, international trade, firm dynamics and misallocation.
Pranjali is a second-year student in the M.S. in Applied Economics program. She received her bachelor's degree in Economics from Christ University, Bangalore in 2019. Her academic interests include studying how education, health, culture, and society shape people's workforce decisions. She is passionate about strengthening inclusive and supportive communities.
Mihir is a first-year Masters of Applied Econ student at the University of Maryland. He received his bachelor's degree in Business Administration with a major in International Business from India in 2021. Mihir's work has been focused on international trade facilitation and consulting and has worked across this field in India after his undergrad.
Department of Government and Politics
Zhenze Huang is a second-year Ph.D. student in Government and Politics at the University of Maryland, specializing in International Relations and Comparative Politics. His research interests center on domestic politics of foreign policy and political economy of authoritarian institutions, with a regional focus on China and East Asia. Zhenze earned his BA degree in International Affairs and Political Science at George Washington University, and an MA degree in China Studies and International Economics at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.
Sonia is a third-year PhD student in GVPT. She received her bachelor's degree in political science and anthropology from the University of Florida in 2021. Sonia's current research interests involve the political behavior of second-generation immigrants in the US. This is Sonia's second year serving on DGSAC. In her free time she enjoys watching shows, exercising, and exploring the DMV.
Taib Biygautane is a first-year Ph.D. student in GVPT. Prior to joining this program, he pursued graduate-level studies in International Conflict Management at Kennesaw State University. He also undertook non-degree courses in International Affairs at Georgia Tech. Taib's research interests include the determinants and dynamics of regional cooperation and rivalry with a specific interest in the role of heads of states and regional organizations.
Badradin is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Government and Politics. Before coming to the University of Maryland, he received his bachelor’s degree in International Affairs from Eastern Washington University. Badradin’s primary field is International Relations, with an interest in conflict and institutions. His main research interest concerns conflict and cooperation over transboundary rivers, with a special focus on the Nile River Basin.
Department of Psychology
"Shannon is a fifth-year doctoral student in the clinical psychology program. She graduated cum laude from Northwestern University in 2016 with a B.A. in Cognitive Science (Cognitive Neuroscience concentration) and Psychology, and formerly worked as a post-bac research fellow at the NIMH. Her on-going research aims to understand the psychobiological mechanisms that underlie the development and course of internalizing illness (anxiety disorders and depression). "
Sarah is a third-year Clinical Psychology Ph.D. student. She received his B.S. in Psychology with a minor in Chemistry from the University of Pittsburgh in 2019. Sarah's current research interests focus on the influence of different types of stressors on the development of depression and resilience in adolescent immigrants of color.
Jen is a second-year Ph.D. student in Counseling Psychology. She holds a B.A. in Educational Studies and minor in Anthropology from Emory University and two master's degrees in Counseling. Currently, Jen is interested in researching how Asian Americans uniquely experience and cope with oppression and trauma (e.g. abuse, interpersonal violence, racial trauma). In her work, she is passionate about highlighting the strengths and resilience of trauma survivors and translating her research into interventions that empower and equip underserved communities.
Sarah is a first-year graduate student in the Master of Professional Studies in Clinical Psychological Science. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, in 2023. Sarah's research interests are depression and anxiety disorders in children and adolescents. She is particularly interested in understanding how various cultural and environmental factors impact the development of these disorders within minority and immigrant populations.
Becca is pursuing her MPS in Industrial and Organizational Psychology. She received her MEd from UMD in School Counseling in 2020 and her BA in Comparative Cultures and Politics, African Language Specialization, from Michigan State University in 2015. Originally from metro Detroit, Becca has worked in K-12 and higher education settings supporting students and young adults in pursuing their professional goals in both the Midwest and the DMV. She is passionate about motivational interviewing, career coaching, performance management and professional development programming.
Department of Sociology
Laura is a Ph.D. student in Sociology. She received her bachelor's degree in psychology from Syracuse University in 2006 and her bachelor's degree in sociology from the University of Maryland in 2009. Laura's current research interests are centered around social psychology, stratification and inequality, intersectionality, and family.
Program in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science
John Carlo Jadormeo Combista is a second-year PhD in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science (NACS) student. He is interested in understanding how the brain develops and what causes neurological diseases and disorders to arise. Outside of academia and writing, he is passionate about singing and volunteers his free time to work with vulnerable populations, such as children.
Katherine is a fourth year Ph.D student in the biology department. She received her bachelor’s degree in molecular biology with a minor in neuroscience. Katherine’s current research focuses on sensory neuroscience with a focus on how synaptic transmission within retinorecipient circuits can shape non-visual behaviors.
Yash is a fourth-year Ph.D. student in the Neuroscience and Cognitive Science (NACS) program. He received his bachelor's degree in Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology (NBB) from Emory University in 2020. Yash's current research interests are focused on the effects of aerobic exercise on older adults' brain activation, brain connectivity, and mental health.