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Lab Members

Professor

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Sohee Park

Professor

Dr. Park’s research program lies at the intersection between clinical, cognitive and social neuroscience. Her lab studies the nature of cognitive and social functioning in individuals with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder and people at elevated risk for psychosis in order to elucidate the etiology and neural basis of psychotic disorders, and understand the complex relationships among clinical symptoms, cognitive deficits, and brain abnormalities.


    Lab Manager

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    Michael Sangimino

    Lab Manager

    Michael Sangimino recently graduated Vanderbilt with a double major in Psychology and Child Studies and a minor in business. As the lab manager, Michael serves as the point person for coordinating participants, handling the administrative side of things, and assisting on research. He is primarily interested in the intersection between psychosis and addiction, trauma, depression, and anxiety. In his free time, he is an avid reader and soccer fan and enjoys spending time with his large family. 135 first relatives and counting!


    Fulbright Fellow

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    Anne Felsenheimer

    Fulbright Fellow

    Anne Felsenheimer is a doctoral candidate in psychology and visiting Fulbright Scholar at Vanderbilt. Her work explores the intersection of words, meaning and context, with a focus on pragmatic language in psychiatric disorders. Her current research on the coupling of mind and body in the (de)coupling of word and meaning brings together both cognitive and embodied perspectives. Originally from Germany, Anne studied psychology, philosophy and medicine at the University of Heidelberg, Tübingen, Vienna and Charité Berlin before coming to Nashville. Some of her previous work includes irony and metaphor comprehension in patients with schizophrenia and borderline personality disorder. Anne quickly acclimated to Nashville culture and loves going to local events such as Honkey Tonk Tuesdays!


      Graduate Students

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      Tatiana Baxter

      First Year Graduate Student in the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program

      Tatiana completed her BA at Vanderbilt University in 2018 with majors in Psychology, Spanish, and History (European concentration). She is interested in examining cultural differences in the etiology and symptomology of psychosis and schizophrenia through the analysis of written narratives and language, particularly in the Latino community. Tatiana also endeavors to better understand bodily and emotional disturbances in individuals with schizophrenia and those at-risk for developing psychosis, in hopes of helping develop clinical interventions that can improve quality of life for these populations. In recognition of her prior scholastic accomplishments, Tatiana was selected as a Provost’s Graduate Fellow and is recognized as a Russell G. Hamilton Scholar. She is grateful to have the support of many, especially her constant companion and rescue dog, Jagger, who she has been training as a therapy dog.


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        Pietra Bruni

        Fifth Year Graduate Student in the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program

        Pietra is a graduate student in the Department of Psychological Sciences at Vanderbilt University, specializing in Clinical Science. She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 2015 with a Bachelor of Philosophy (BPhil) and a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Psychology and Film Studies, and with a certificate in the Conceptual Foundations of Medicine from the Department of History and Philosophy of Science. The majority of her undergraduate research was conducted at Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic and focused on understanding changes in the brain associated with aging, as well as computational modeling approaches to understand cognitive control and their disturbances in serious mental illness and early psychosis.

        She joined the Department of Psychological Sciences at Vanderbilt University in 2017 as a Clinical Psychology PhD student. Her doctoral work has focused on the analysis of non-verbal and interpersonal behavior, and the influence emotion regulation techniques have on facilitating and maintaining meaningful social relationships. She recently completed a project that used a within-subjects design to asses interoception (the sense of the physiological condition of the body) in two distinct physiological domains, cardiac and respiratory.


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          Hyeon-Seung 'Hanson' Lee

          Fourth Year Graduate Student in the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program

          Hanson’s research aim is to identify what underlying cognitive-affective mechanisms of schizophrenia develop, maintain, and aggravate its symptoms. To investigate the mechanisms, he would like to probe the specific components under neurocognitive impairments, social dysfunction, or self-aberrations of schizophrenia using experimental, neurobiological, and behavioral methodologies. In addition, he is also interested in exploring intact abilities and cognitive potential in individuals with schizophrenia that would give clinical implication or an opportunity to reduce prejudice toward them. He is currently working on projects of VR based social simulation training, 3D body mapping, and Peripersonal space.


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            Katrina Rbeiz

            First Year Graduate Student in the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program

            Katrina graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a B.S. in Clinical Psychology and a B.A. in Global Studies. Prior to pursuing her PhD in Clinical Psychology, Katrina worked as a Post-Baccalaureate Program Coordinator at the Medical University of South Carolina. Her research interests broadly include addressing disparities in the measurement and diagnosis of schizophrenia spectrum disorders in people of different ethnic and racial backgrounds. She hopes to use a multi-method approach in identifying and treating the attenuated symptoms of psychosis in ethnic and racial minorities through developing culturally valid assessments and interventions. In her spare time, Katrina is an avid reader and a grocery store connoisseur.


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              Lénie Torregrossa

              Sixth Year Graduate Student in the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program

              After studying Psychobiology at UCLA, Lénie (she/her/hers) joined the Park lab in 2016 to pursue her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology. She is currently completing her clinical internship at Sharp HealthCare in San Diego, CA, where she treats individuals with serious mental illness in a hospital setting. Her research interests broadly include social deficits and bodily self disturbances in schizophrenia and schizotypy. Across three studies, her dissertation, “Embodiment across the Schizophrenia Spectrum,” explored interoceptive functioning, emotional embodiment, and body ownership in individuals with, or at risk for, schizophrenia. She aspires to continue this line of research during postdoc.


                Undergraduate Research Assistants

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                Kathryn 'Katie' Babbitt

                Undergraduate Research Assistant

                Kathryn is a junior majoring in Psychology and minoring in Gender and Sexuality Studies. She is interested in how to better approach preventative treatment for individuals with certain risk factors of schizophrenia, especially those associated with trauma, abuse, and neglect.  Kathryn is proud to say she knows how to unicycle!


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                  Mincheol 'Brian' Kim

                  Undergraduate Research Assistant

                  Brian is majoring in Neuroscience and Medicine, Health, and Society (MHS). His is primarily interested in looking at ways different neurological disorders cause varying detrimental effects on cognition and behavior to get a comprehensive understanding of the human mind. Brian enjoys playing typing games in his free time!


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                    Mingyuan 'Bobby' Li

                    Undergraduate Research Assistant

                    Bobby is a sophomore, majoring in psychology and minoring in data science and undergraduate business. He is interested in the symptoms and manifestations of schizophrenia. Bobby likes to play the guitar and skateboard during his free time.


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                      Ryan McKew

                      Undergraduate Research Assistant

                      Ryan is a junior majoring in Psychology with minors in Chinese language and culture as well as Neuroscience. He is interested in how to better manage emergency psychotic episodes as well as the intersection between social cognition and schizophrenia. He is an animal lover and in his free time he enjoys rock climbing, playing video games, and enjoying the outdoors!


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                        Morgan Patty

                        Undergraduate Research Assistant

                        Morgan is in her senior year of undergraduate studies in Psychology & American Studies. She is interested in experimental treatment methods for severe mental disorders, like Schizophrenia, as well as exploring the underlying causes of social deficits associated with these disorders. She loves fashion, aesthetic comfort objects and R&B.


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                          Adi Peres

                          Undergraduate Research Assistant

                          Adi is a senior majoring in Psychology and minoring in Neuroscience. She is interested in understanding how cognitive deficits, such as impairments in working memory, can lead to deficits in social functioning and atypical interpretations of social interactions in individuals with schizophrenia. Adi loves to crochet and her first language was Hebrew!


                            Gwendolyn 'Gwen' Smith

                            Undergraduate Research Assistant

                            Gwen is a senior, majoring in psychology. She is highly interested in both understanding the risk factors of schizophrenia, and how schizophrenia differs in its presentation and treatment requirements in varying groups. Gwen loves to bake and will (usually) be happy to make you a sweet treat upon request.


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                              James Yang

                              Undergraduate Research Assistant

                              James is an undergraduate on the pre-med track, majoring in Cognitive Studies and minoring in Piano Performance. He is interested in understanding more about the nature of psychosis, particularly that of schizophrenia, and the research that is currently being done to develop effective treatments for schizophrenic patients. He is also interested in exploring the spectrum of one’s sense of embodiment and identity in the context of abnormal sensitivity, as present in schizophrenia, and supernormal sensitivity, as present in highly-trained athletes and musicians. James also taught English to Taiwanese children one summer, even though he didn’t speak the local language!


                                Lab Dogs

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                                Jagger Baxter

                                Park Lab Support Dog

                                Jagger completed his basic training with the Dog Wizard at just 4 months old – a prodigy in his own right. He has become a treasured member of the Park Lab and the Psychology Department, providing countless kisses, high fives, fetch breaks, and encouraging looks to students, staff, faculty, and research participants alike. Jagger’s main research interests are centered around strategies for receiving as many treats and pets as possible. When he’s not in the lab, Jagger is an avid swimmer, socialite, and foodie. He lives his life by William Butler Yeats’ immortal words: “There are no strangers here; only friends you haven’t yet met.”


                                  Collaborators

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                                  Brain Oscillation and Stimulation

                                  • Prof. Geoff Woodman, PhD., Dept of Psychology, Vanderbilt

                                  Virtual Reality

                                  • Prof. Bobby Bodenheimer, PhD., Vanderbilt School of Engineering
                                  • Prof. Nilanjan Sarkar, PhD., Vanderbilt School of Engineering
                                  • Prof. Catie Chang, PhD., Vanderbilt School of Engineering
                                  • Lauren Buck, M.Eng. Vanderbilt School of Engineering
                                  • Akshith Ullal, BSc Vanderbilt School of Engineering

                                  Hallucinations Consortium

                                  • Prof. Anne Giersch, MD., PhD., Director of INSERM U1114, Strasbourg, France
                                  • Prof. Cherise Rosen, PhD., Dept of Psychiatry, University of Illinois-Chicago
                                  • Prof. Clara Humpston, PhD., School of Psychology, University of Birmingham

                                  Resilience Network

                                  • Prof. Katy Thakkar, PhD., Dept of Psychology, Michigan State
                                  • University Prof. Bill Chopik, PhD., Dept of Psychology, Michigan State University
                                  • Prof. Junghee Lee, PhD., Dept of Psychiatry, University of Alabama
                                  • Prof. Kyle Minor, PhD., Dept of Psychology,I UPUI
                                  • Prof. Amanda McCleery, PhD., Dept of Psychology, University of Iowa

                                  Perceptual Processes and Psychopathology

                                  • Prof. Duje Tadin, PhD., Dept of Brain & Cognitive Sciences, University of Rochester
                                  • Prof. Randoph Blake, PhD., Dept of Psychology, Vanderbilt

                                  Diversity in Psychiatry

                                  • Dr. Elisa Dias, PhD., Director of Cognitive Neurophysiology Laboratory, Nathan Kline Institute
                                  • Prof. Lynn DeLisi, MD., Professor of Psychiatry, Cambridge Health Alliance