about me

Hello, and welcome! Thank you for taking the time to learn a little about me. I am a developmental psychologist by training with a passion for utilizing a mixed methodology to explore the complexity of the human experience, especially through the developmental periods of late adolescence and emerging adulthood.

My primary area of research is the exploration of how the multiple identities that we subscribe to influence our wellbeing, belonging, and self-efficacy, especially among traditionally marginalized populations. Higher education is steeped in a past of institutional discrimination and prejudice, and while we have come a long way, we still have so far to go.

When I am out in the wild, I spend my free time with my family, friends, and my menagerie of animals. I love reading, riding and spending time with my horses, and creating art through various outlets. I come with my extroverted service dog, Atticus Finch, who exhibits main character energy. I like to say he's my sidekick, but it's more likely that I am actually his.

I endorse the following identities for myself: neurodivergent, living with disability, non-traditional, returning, and first-generation college student. I am also a vehement ally and defender for queer and trans individuals. We are all connected through our shared humanity, and basic human rights must be defended at all cost.

I hope that one day, my work can contribute to making a better, more equitable world.

After spending four years in Nebraska, I moved back to the west coast in June of 2023 to complete my dissertation, and I am actively seeking a tenure-track faculty position for the Fall of 2024.

learn more about my educational journey

My educational journey is an important component to who I am and the role I play in higher education.

I proudly consider myself to be a "non-traditional" student, and I celebrate the non-linear path that led me to where I am today. Come to my office for a cup of coffee and I'll tell you all about how I barely graduated high school, how my counselor told me that I wasn't "college material", and how many detentions and Saturday schools I had to go to so that I could walk at graduation. Failure is crucial to my story.

I took a gap year after high school, and then enrolled at Santa Rosa Junior College in Santa Rosa, California, where I wandered a bit between majors and accidentally took enough classes to earn myself 3 Associate's degrees. After, I felt burnt out and unable to find my purpose, so I left academia and worked for 10 years at various customer-service and management-focused jobs until one day, I woke up and realized I didn't want to do it anymore. I applied and was admitted to California State University, Sacramento to start in the spring of 2017. After recognizing that I chose a psychology course every time I needed to take an elective while at SRJC, I chose to major in psychology. It felt like home.

I was able to go from barely graduating high school to earning my Bachelor's degree magna cum laude, and a vital part of this was due to the encouragement I received from my faculty mentors. These relationships influenced my research, and I began a project studying the impact of faculty support on university student belonging. This is also where I gained an appreciation for statistics after many years of poor experiences with math. I graduated in spring of 2019, and was accepted into graduate school at University of Nebraska-Lincoln

At UNL, I was able to cultivate a deep love for research and statistics through the many opportunities available to me. I have taken graduate-level courses in quantitative research methods, psychometric measure, ANOVA and MANOVA, linear and multiple regression, structure equation modeling, longitudinal research, multilevel modeling, as well as qualitative research methods and mixed methodology. I earned my Master's in Educational Psychology in the spring of 2021, and I completed the work to earn a graduate certificate in Mixed Method Research in the spring of 2022. Upon completion of my dissertation in the spring of 2024, I will earn a Doctorate of Philosophy in Developmental and Learning Sciences with a minor in Quantitative, Qualitative, and Psychometric Measures.

For my dissertation, I am working on first developing a new measure of comprehensive, multidimensional wellbeing, and then refining it for work with emerging adults. There is a significant gap in the research literature regarding how to measure wellbeing during this unique developmental period. What I've found is that very few researchers have utilized the help of the population they are attempting to study, so I am hoping to amplify their voices with their participation in focus groups and qualitative interviews to help guide me. I am especially interested in capturing the personal narratives of traditionally marginalized individuals, therefore I am over-sampling in these special populations. I am currently in the data collection phase of this project.

I was given the opportunity to teach from the first semester I came to UNL, and I have completely fallen in love with teaching statistics. There is nothing quite as tangible as seeing the moment when my students "get it", and I live for helping students move beyond their previous bad experiences and beyond what they believe are their limitations in math.


2021 - 2024

2019 - 2023

2019 - 2021

2017 - 2019

2004 - 2017

Doctor of Philosophy, Developmental and Learning Sciences (Expected; August 2024)

University of Nebraska-Lincoln   |   Lincoln, Nebraska 

Minor: Quantitative, Qualitative, and Psychometric Measures

Graduate Certificate in Mixed Methods Research

University of Nebraska-Lincoln   |   Lincoln, Nebraska 

Master of Arts, Educational Psychology

University of Nebraska-Lincoln   |   Lincoln, Nebraska

Specialization: Developmental and Learning Sciences

Bachelor of Arts, Psychology

California State University, Sacramento   |   Sacramento, California

Associate of Arts, Social and Behavioral Sciences

Associate of Arts, Liberal Arts

Associate of Arts, United States History

Santa Rosa Junior College   |   Santa Rosa, California

Santa Rosa Junior College
California State University, Sacramento
University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Professional Associations

2023 - Present

2021 - Present

2020 - Present

2019 - Present

2019 - Present

2019 - Present

Golden Key International Honour Society 

Society for the Study of Emerging Adulthood

Society for Research on Adolescence

American Psychological Association

The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi

Psi Chi International Honor Society