Winners selected for 2012 APA Early Graduate Student Researcher Awards

Awards will support students’ continued research and training.

The American Psychological Association Science Student Council (APASSC) has selected three students to receive the 2012 APA Early Graduate Student Researcher Award.

Each student receives a $1,000 award to be used towards research-related expenses.

More than 90 graduate students in their first two years of doctoral studies applied for the award, representing all areas of research within psychological science. The recipients were selected based on the quality of their research during their initial years of graduate study.

The recipients are:

Michael Alosco
Kent State University

Michael AloscoMichael is a third year graduate student in the clinical psychology doctoral program at Kent State University and plans to complete an internship and postdoctoral fellowship in clinical neuropsychology. He currently works with Dr. John Gunstad examining cognitive function in a diverse range of medical and neurological populations. 

Michael’s specific research interests involve the investigation of cognitive impairment among older adults with heart failure. He has conducted a series of published research studies that have identified key predictors of neurocognitive outcomes in this population, including cerebral perfusion, physical activity, depression and medical comorbidities. His current work highlights the adverse effects of cognitive impairment on functional independence and treatment adherence in heart failure, particularly safe driving. The funds from this award will help support Michael’s current research examining heart failure and driving performance and his professional development through attendance at national research conferences.

Katie Chun
University of California, Davis

Katie Chun Katie’s research investigates the underlying physiological mechanisms of how personality may affect health outcomes (e.g., asthma). Specifically, she is interested in how behavioral inhibition is associated with differences in regulation of inflammation. One way that behavioral inhibition and inflammation may be related is through stress response systems, particularly the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, which uses glucocorticoids as its main effector molecule. Normally, glucocorticoids regulate the immune system by decreasing inflammation. She is interested in how behavioral inhibition may be related to disruptions in this normal process, and how these effects could lead to alterations in health.

Katie is a third year graduate student in biological psychology at the University of California, Davis, where she works with Dr. John Capitanio. This award will help her to expand her past work and to better understand the molecular mechanisms of the association of behavioral inhibition and inflammation.

Jonathan P. Stange
Temple University

Jonathan P. Stange Jonathan’s research evaluates cognitive vulnerability-stress models of depression and bipolar disorder. Previous studies on which he and colleagues have collaborated have evaluated cognitive styles that confer vulnerability to mood symptoms and that predict the course of mood disorders. His most recent project is a multi-wave study investigating and comparing inflexible cognitive, behavioral and psychophysiological characteristics as vulnerabilities to depression following life stress. This study differs from most prior research, which has focused on the content of cognitive and coping styles that increase vulnerabilities to depression, rather than the role of the rigidity of those styles in promoting vulnerability.

Jonathan is a third-year graduate student in the doctoral program in clinical psychology at Temple University, working with Dr. Lauren Alloy. The award funds will be used to support research costs as well as advanced statistical training in multilevel modeling and structural equation modeling.

More about the awards

The APASSC established the Early Graduate Student Researcher Award (formerly Early Researcher Award) in 2004 to recognize students who have demonstrated outstanding research ability early in their graduate careers. Recipients receive an award of $1,000. For more information, including application instructions and eligibility requirements, visit the Early Graduate Student Researcher Award webpage.