My research has focused on developing multi-method assessments for measuring children’s empathy, especially their empathic happiness, and understanding its role in children’s healthy social development, positive self-perceptions, and mental health. I was recently awarded a Visionary Grant from the American Psychological Foundation (The Neurobiology of Sharing Others’ Happiness: A Clue to Understanding Children’s Aggression?) and a Young Investigator Grant from the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation (Neural Processes Underlying Interpretations of Emotions in Children at Risk for Depression) to investigate children’s empathic responses to others’ sadness and happiness with novel designs that employ behavioral, cognitive, affective, physiological, and neural measurements. My training to conduct this research included an NIMH Fellowship in Mental Health as an undergraduate student at the University of Pittsburgh, an NIMH-NRSA fellowship (Vulnerability to Psychopathology in Preschool-Aged Children of Depressed and Well Mothers) as a graduate student at Emory University, and an NIMH NRSA fellowship (Neurobehavioral Aspects of Personality and Psychopathology) as a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Minnesota. I am currently an associate professor of clinical psychology at Georgia State University (GSU) where my research evaluates programs that enhance children’s capacity for empathic happiness and parents’ skills for fostering children’s prosocial motivations and healthy empathy.

This profile was last updated on February 7, 2020

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