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2810 Old Main Hill
Logan UT 84322


The Culture & Mental Health Lab is currently comprised of graduate students in the combined Clinical, Counseling, School Psychology doctoral program at Utah State University and undergraduate students in the Psychology Department. Lab members are engaged in independent research in an interdependent context. Project content is in parenting, cultural values, microaggressions, and evidence-based interventions. Students are expected to be productive as a result of independent motivation and commitment, engaged mentoring, and proactive collaboration and support from a talented peer group as well as from family and loved ones.

Graduate Alumni

I (Melanie) arrived at USU in the Fall of 2000. Since then I have had the great privilege of working with students who brought in top-notch intellect, unique talents, and ignited passions. My goal from the moment students walk in the door is to prepare them to leave, and I couldn't be prouder of our doctoral-level professionals. 


Christina Patterson, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow, University of New Mexico Health Sciences 

Dissertation: Increasing Knowledge and Detection of Racial Microaggressions in White College Students


Andrea Call, Ed.S., School Psychologist, Davis School District

Thesis: Participation in dual language immersion programs: Using Theory of Planned Behavior to predict enrollment

Odessia Knowles, Ph.D., Founder of Knowles Consulting and Psychological Services;Trauma Therapist at Reaching HOPE

Dissertation:  The impact of social comparisons on stereotype threat for Black college students attending primarily White colleges and universities (2016)

Thesis: Facebooking for social support: An Experimental Test of Relational Regulation Theory (2013)

Jeisianne Rosario-Colón, M.S., doctoral student, Utah State University

Thesis: Parenting styles and child outcomes in Puerto Rican families (2016)

Marsha Tafoya, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow at Chicago Children's Advocacy Center

Dissertation: The socialization of respeto in Mexican immigrant families

Michelle L. Varón, Ph.D.

Dissertation: Amor de cerca: Positive involvement in Latino families


Lesther Papa, Ed.S.

Thesis: The impact of teaching and academic self-efficacy on student engagement and academic outcomes (2015)


Todd W. Lindsley, Ph.D., Psychologist, Counseling & Human Development at Dartmouth College

Dissertation: A Multimedia Intervention to Increase he Likelihood that University Students in Need Will Utilize Counseling Services (2013)

Thesis: Ethnic Minority Utilization of Counseling Services (2008)


Elisaida Méndez, Ph.D., Psychologist, University Counseling Center of Case Western Reserve University

Dissertation: Perceptions of interethnic dating among college students (2012)

Thesis:  Exploring characteristics of interethnic relations (2008)

Cory Myler, Ph.D., Psychologist, Garnett Counseling Center, Cornell University

Dissertation: Increasing psychological flexibility regarding interpersonal conflicts between religious beliefs and attitudes toward sexual minorities: An ACT intervention (2012)

Thesis:  Latter Day Saint religiosity and attitudes towards sexual minorities (2008)


Audrey L. Schwartz, Ph.D., Psychologist, University of Oregon Counseling Center

Dissertation: Marital quality, acculturation, and communication in Mexican American couples (2011)

Thesis: Latinos’ collectivism and self-disclosure in intercultural and intracultural friendships and acquaintanceships (2009)

Spencer Richards, M.S.

Thesis:  Latino youths’ academic outcomes: The role of ethnic and academic socialization in buffering discrimination

Eliza Torres, Ph.D.

Dissertation: Problem solving in Latino families (2011)

Thesis: Latino/a children’s academic achievement: Role of parental variables (2008)


Melissa R. Donovick, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Nebraska Wesleyan University

Dissertation: Parenting practices and child mental health among Spanish speaking Latino families: Examining the role of parental cultural values (2010)

Thesis: Predicting child outcomes from parenting styles of Spanish speaking families (2006)


Aaron Ahern, Ph.D., Psychologist, Department of Veterans Affairs

Dissertation:  A longitudinal exploration of factors that influence acculturation and enculturation patterns (2009)

Thesis:  Acculturation vs Cultural Identification: A study comparing constructs and measurements (2005)

Azure Midzinki, Ed.S., School Psychologist Cour d'Alene School District

Thesis: Research ethics and coercion in college students

Kee Straits, Ph.D., Psychologist / Owner, TLC Transformations

Dissertation: Language brokering in Latino families: Direct observations of brokering patterns, parent-child interactions, and relationship quality


Ana Baumann, Ph.D., Research Assistant Professor, Washington University, St. Louis, MO.

Dissertation: Are delay discounting, probability discounting and time perception related? A cross-cultural study among Latino and White American students. (2008)


Jennifer Fallon, Ph.D., Psychologist in private practice, Minnesota 

Dissertation: Yoga as an intervention for stress-reduction and enhanced wellbeing in African American athletes


Jesús Rodríguez, Ph.D., Psychologist, Department of Veteran's Affairs

Dissertation: A longitudinal exploration of factors that influence acculturation and enculturation patterns