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Psychology | EPPL Current Lab Members



Emotions and Positive Psychology Lab
Professor Anthony Ahrens, Director

Graduate Students

Alisa Breetz received her BA in Cognitive Science from Brown University. She completed her clinical internship at Duke University Medical Center, with a focus on conducting Cognitive-Behavioral and Dialectical Behavior Therapy with adults. In early January she defended her dissertation on self-concept clarity and self-destructive behavior and is now working on final revisions to the dissertation.

Emily Farr received her BFA in Drama from NYU. She entered the MA program at American in 2008, and subsequently entered the PhD program in 2010. Her dissertation will focus on the relationships between mindfulness, attention, and eating behaviors in an overweight population.

Vicki Farrow received her bachelor's degree in Psychology from Drexel University in Philadelphia. Her graduate research has explored mindfulness and mood, as well as various women's health issues. Her doctoral dissertation is examining the relationships among stressors, perceived stress, mindfulness, and physical health functioning among obstetrician-gynecologists. She is presently on internship at the Salem VA Medical Center and hopes to pursue a postdoctoral fellowship specializing in the treatment of PTSD.

Kim Gilroy’s clinical and research interests involve adapting evidence-based interventions for persons with co-morbid medical, psychological and cognitive health concerns, with a sub-specialty in trauma and recovery. Her thesis was a cross-sectional study of the relationship between empathy and mindfulness. Her dissertation is a quasi-experimental study examining psychological and behavioral outcomes of a dialectical-behavior therapy group adapted for adults with Intellectual Disabilities. She is currently an intern with the Washington DC VA Medical Center (DCVAMC) and has enjoyed prior externships at the DCVAMC, George Mason University, and community mental health centers. Kim received her BA in Dance from UCLA and an MA in Counseling from Lesley University.

Laura Herron received her BA from Barnard College in 2009, and entered AU's Clinical Psychology Program in the fall of 2012. She is interested in the clinical application of mindfulness as well as other positive psychology constructs, and she is currently beginning a study examining the effects of mindfulness and self-compassion on sustained attention after rumination.

Emily Maher is a second year Masters student. Her undergraduate work was also done at AU, as she focused on international studies. She is currently working on her thesis, which examines the effect of a compassion-based mindfulness meditation (loving-kindness meditation) on perceptions of time and life satisfaction. Broadly, she is interested in ways in which mindfulness practice might enhance emotion regulation and mitigate the effects of stress on well-being.

Rubie Peters is a first year Master's student with an emphasis in personality and social psychology. She received her BGS in psychology from the University of Kansas with minors in philosophy and quantitative psychology. Her research interests include information processing and sharing, decision making, and belief in conspiracy theories.

Kate Stewart is a third year student in the Clinical Psychology program at AU. She completed her undergraduate degree at Boston College, where her research focused on emotion regulation and social cognition. Her current research interests include the affective consequences of gratitude interventions, the link between gratitude and the perception of meaning, and the ways in which pursuing happiness may undermine well-being.

Sharone Weltfreid is a fourth year clinical psychology doctoral student. Her research interests include mindfulness and gratitude. She received her BA in Psychology from UCLA.

(updates to the undergraduate list will be forthcoming)

Undergraduate Students

  • Joanna Anderson ‘14
  • Courtney Forbes ‘12
  • Hana Le ‘14
  • Sharon Shih ‘12