News 2012 - 2013

Summer 2013 | Spring 2013 | Fall 2012

Winter 2012 Newsletter

Summer 2013

Tulane Psychology in the News: Why do babies bang? August 19, 2013

A study by Sascha Kahrs, Wendy Jung, and Jeff Lockman is described in The American Scholar  read more

Tulane Psychology in the News: Role Models  August 9, 2013

A study by Stefanie Simon and Crystal Hoyt is referenced in a New York Times article about the effects of role models. read more

Dr. Wee Explores Civic Engagement in Pakistan July 2013


Drs. Beth Wee, Sally Kenney, and Agnieszka Nance traveled to Pakistan to share insights about civic engagement at Fatima Jinnah Women's University.


Dr. Alvarez on the Move Summer 2013

AlvarezDr. Julie Alvarez, Senior Professor of Practice in Tulane’s Department of Psychology, has accepted a Psychologist position at the Southeast Louisiana Veterans Health Care System in New Orleans. Dr. Alvarez served as a Professor of Practice in Psychology since 2006, teaching a wide variety of required and elective courses. Her undergraduate offerings included large enrollment courses such as Introductory Psychology and Psychological Testing and Measurement, as well as smaller enrollment courses, including an upper-level Clinical Neuropsychology honors course and a freshman TIDES Psychology in the Movies seminar. She also offered graduate coursework in Psychoeducational Assessment. In addition, she developed an intensive course for the sophomore Newcomb Scholar honors students that allowed her students to gain insight into the epistemological approaches used by different disciplines to uncover truth.

Welcome to Drs. Hitti, Hoerger, and Jackson Summer 2013


Aline Hitti (Ph.D. 2013 Developmental Science, University of Maryland; MSE 2002 Mathematical Sciences, Johns Hopkins University) joins the faculty as an adjunct instructor. Dr. Hitti examines intergroup phenomena such as prejudice and group-based social exclusion from a developmental perspective. Her recent published work appears in Social Development and in Child Development. In the 2013-2014 academic year, Dr. Hitti is teaching PSYC3180 Psychological Testing and Measurement.

Michael Hoerger(Ph.D. 2010 Clinical Psychology, Central Michigan University; NRSA Post-doctoral Fellow University of Rochester Medical Center) joins the faculty as a visiting assistant professor. Dr. Hoerger is interested in affective forecasting, health communication, and individual differences.  Recent work appears in Emotion, Personality and Individual Differences, and Psychology and Aging.  In the 2013-2014 academic year, he is teaching Experimental Psychology as well as Psychology of Personality.

Christophe Jackson (Ph.D. 2012 Performance Arts Medicine; MS Biology, University of Alabama at Birmingham) is a visiting scholar who is interested in the cognitive and perceptual effects of hearing loss on performance in musicians. Dr. Jackson is co-director of the Save NOLA Sound Initiative through the New Orleans Musicians’ Clinic and Assistance Foundation.

Careers outside the box June 28, 2013


For Covert, who graduated from Tulane in 2005 with degrees in women’s studies and psychology, opening a pet sitting business was not part of her original plan.

Read the Tulane Insider or the Psych 2012 Newsletter (p. 3)

MS and PhD Degrees in Psychology May 17, 2013

2013GaryandWayne_118MEDStudents awarded Masters and Doctor of Philosophy degrees in August 2012, December 2012, and May 2013 were recognized at the Graduate Recognition Ceremony on May 17. Thirteen scholars were awarded the Master of Science in Psychology, and 7 scholars were awarded the Doctor of Philosophy in Psychology. The MS Degree was awarded to Kevin Barry, Patrick Bell, Ryan Bigelsen, Amanda Borja, Jeffrey Brown, Christopher Burchett, Michael Girgis, Dhruv Gupta, Brooke Rappaport, Kristin Scott, Stefanie Simon, Allisyn Swift, and Tara Van Bommel. The Doctor of Philosophy was awarded to Alison Blodorn, Elin Grissom, Wayne Hawley, Kyle Hucke, Bjorn (Sascha) Kahrs, Balachandar Kathirvelu, and Qi Li. In addition, the Doctor of Philosophy also was awarded to Neuroscience Program graduates Katherine Cost and Christine Witty, who worked with Psychology faculty.

Spring 2013

Accolades May 2013

Congratulations to

  • Dr. Lisa Molix, who is promoted to Associate Professor with tenure.

  • Dr. Beth Wee, named as both the Student Organization Advisor of the Year as well as the Undergraduate Student Government Faculty Member of the Year.

  • Graduating psychology honors student Chloe Renshaw, who is honored as a member of Tulane 34

  • Winners of our Department of Psychology awards Erin Albert,Rebekah Cianci, Elin Grissom, Nicolette Guillou, Elizabeth Hargroder, Wayne Hawley, Carolyn Kaufman and Sofia Jeanne Roggeveen.

  • Daniel Bayless, recipient of first prize for a graduate student poster at SSE Research Day.

Michael Cunningham Honored April 2013


Michael Cunningham was recognized with the Society for Research in Child Development Award for Distinguished Contributions at the 2013 meeting in Seattle. The award is given in recognition of an individual’s contributions to the success of SRCD in achieving its purposes as an organization. Dr. Cunningham was recognized for his commitment to the mission of SRCD through an extended and exemplary record of service to the organization, including:


  • Strengthening the involvement of underrepresented groups in SRCD through strong and thoughtful leadership of the Black Caucus in SRCD.

  • Providing energetic and creative direction of the Millennium Scholars Program that introduces young ethnic minority scholars to future careers in developmental science.

  • Bringing to SRCD publications a sophisticated understanding of context and culture in development through his service as an Associate Editor of Child Development.

End of Year Celebration  April 23, 2013

psycawards2013 005_109MEDThe 2013 Psychology Honor's Thesis Students presented their findings in a poster format "data blitz," and received recognition certificates from Dr. Cunningham. The Psi Chi Senior Officers Chris Anderson, April Hartman, and Aimee Karstens inducted 21 new members, then Dr. Cunningham presented the 2013 undergraduate awards of Senior Scholar, the Rosa Cahn Hartman Prize, the Aaron Hartman Medal, the Anne M. McPherson Memorial Student Award, the Barbara E. Moely Award for Psychology in the Public Interest, and the C. Chrisman Wilson Memorial Award for Graduate Student Teaching in Psychology. More pictures 

New 1000-level Psychology Lab March  2013

teaching-facility-smallIn the Fall 2013, the Department launches a laboratory component to PSYC1000. Open to 12 students, this section examines and applies the methods and techniques of scientific inquiry as they are used by Psychologists. It also provides hands-on experiences that reinforce psychological theories. The lab will include activities in neuroanatomy, sensory processes, learning and memory, hypothesis development and testing, and scientific writing. Students will conduct an experiment, analyze the data and write a research styled manuscript. The objective is to gain a deeper understanding of major psychological theories and the empirical nature of psychological science.

Alumna Representative to APA  February  2013

School Psychology alumna Lucinda (Lang) DeGrange was selected as a diversity delegate to the American Psychological Association's Leadership Conference. Dr. DeGrange will take a leadership role with the Louisiana Psychological Association's mission to recruit and retain psychologists from diverse backgrounds.

Tulane Psychologists Train School Officials to Address Crises   January 29  2013

Aided by doctoral trainees specializing in trauma, Professors Stacy Overstreet and Bonnie Nastasi led a day-long workshop on "Crisis Prevention and Preparedness: Comprehensive School Safety Planning." For more on the story see articles in the Advocate and NewWave articles

Fall 2012

Psychology Senior Speaks about Scholarships  November  2012

111212_Hartman-330[1]Speaking to the Science and Engineering Distinguished Leadership Circle, senior April Hartman shares how endowed scholarships have facilitated her training at Tulane.

Read more

Lifetime Achievement Award; November  2012

Bonnie_5[1]At the 32nd annual convention of the Louisiana School Psychology Association, Dr. Bonnie Nastasi received the 2012 Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of her distinguished service and dedication to the school psychologists of Louisiana.

NRSA predoctoral award  September  2012

LLaura Niditch, in the Department of Psychology, was awarded a Ruth L. Kirschstein National Service Research Award (NRSA) Predoctoral Fellowship from the National Institute of Mental Health to examine culture-specific mechanisms of child anxiety development in Latino families. She is working with Dr. R. Enrique Varela.

NIH awards $10.4 million grant to Tulane Center for Aging September  2012

092209_golobDr. Ed Golob is a participant in an NIH Center of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) grant from the National Institutes of Health to study aging and regenerative medicine.

Read more

Daniel Lab Studies Aging Female Brain  August  2012

NIH funds Tulane scientist to study effects of estrogen on the aging female brain

Dr. Jill Daniel has received a 5-year, 1.39 million dollar grant from the National Institutes of Health to study the long-term implications for the aging female brain of short-term estrogen use in midlife.

Read the Full Story »


Department of Psychology • 2007 Percival Stern Hall • New Orleans, LA 70118 • Phone: 504-865-5331 •