Rachel Acereto is a psychology major on the accelerated infant mental health master’s degree track. She will complete her Mills BA in 2015 and her master's degree in infant mental health in 2016. She is currently working in the lab, assisting with graduate student and faculty research. Her interests include developmental psychology, psychopathology, attachment theory, intergenerational transmission of attachment patterns, and the effects of maternal psychopathology on caregiving and attachment. After completing her education at Mills, Rachel plans to work with families in intervention and educational settings. Eventually, Rachel intends to pursue a doctorate in developmental psychology in order to expand research on parental psychopathology and its effects on the attachment relationship.
Rachana Ali is a psychology major on the accelerated infant mental health master’s degree track. She will complete her Mills BA in 2015 and her master's degree in infant mental health in 2016. She assists with research projects in the lab and will complete her developmental practicum in the Mills Children's School during fall of her senior year. Rachana is interested in how parent-child attachment relationships lay the foundation for adult reciprocal attachment relationships with their partners or spouses. She plans to use her education in infant mental health to help support healthy parent-child relationships and developmental competence in families at risk, and spread awareness of the importance of attachment relationships in Fiji.
Monica Arguello Arguello is a graduate student in the Mills Infant Mental Health Master’s Degree Program and will complete her master's degree in May 2017. She came to Mills with a BA in psychology from the University of San Francisco. She became interested in the physical, social, emotional, and psychological development of children when she was an undergraduate. Monica brings to her studies at Mills experiences working with children in a range of age and abilities. She is currently working at the Children’s School at Mills College. Monica enjoys research. She is also currently working as a research assistant for students completing their master’s degrees and plans to continue with research on after completing her master’s degree.
Emma Baumeister is a psychology major on the accelerated infant mental health master’s degree track. She will complete her Mills BA in 2016 and her master's degree in infant mental health in 2017. Emma has volunteered in the lab since she was a sophomore, assisting master’s degree students with their research projects. She will complete her Children’s School practicum in fall 2014, gaining experience with working with typically developing children. While her specific interests in the field of infant mental health are still developing, Emma’s experiences working in research and with young children will help her consolidate her future professional focus. She says, I am thrilled to be moving forward in the program and can’t wait to see what the future holds.
Peri Champoux is a psychology major on the accelerated infant mental health master’s degree track. She will complete her BA degree in 2016 and her MA in IMH in 2017, and plans to add a special education teaching credential to her program. Peri brings extensive experience with children with autism to studies at Mills. She has worked providing ABA in home therapy for children on the autism spectrum and continues her work with the Early Start Lab at the UC Davis MIND Institute. In addition to assisting graduate student and faculty research, Peri volunteers at the Early Intervention program at Children’s Hospital Oakland. She plans to use her IMH master’s degree as a bridge to doctoral level study that will prepare her to work as a clinical development psychologist providing assessments for infants and children during early intervention.
Nina Comforti is a psychology major on the infant mental health track at Mills College. She plans to complete her BA in 2016 and her degree in infant mental health in 2017. Nina is currently working at the Children’s School on campus and brings many years of experience working with children of many ages from a variety of backgrounds. Her work with the foster care system in San Diego sparked her interest in working with infants and toddlers in stressful and traumatic situations, putting emphasis on attachment and bonding. Her research assistant work on student and faculty projects will help shape her interests for further study in infant mental health.
Meredith Gabriel is a psychology major who is interested in joining the accelerated infant mental health master’s degree program. She will complete her Mills BA in 2017. Meredith is interested in developmental psychology, specifically attachment theory. She plans to get her doctorate in developmental psychology, with a strong interest in research or teaching. Her lab experience permits her to explore infant mental health and gain research experience by assisting faculty and graduate student projects.
Sophie Goldberg is a psychology major, graduating from Mills with a BA in 2017 and planning to continue on the accelerated infant mental health master’s degree track. She is volunteering in the lab, working on student-faculty collaborative research projects. Her professional goals are to work with families, especially helping parents of children with special needs, especially those on the autism spectrum. She ultimately plans to use her master’s degree as a bridge to pursue doctoral study in clinical developmental psychology.
Christian Hernandez Christian Hernandez is a graduate student in the Mills Infant Mental Health program and will complete her master’s degree in May 2017. She came to Mills with a BA in psychology from Humboldt State University. After obtaining her BA in psychology, she spent several years working at Children’s Institute, Inc. in early intervention with children who were experiencing behavioral difficulties in school and at home. There she worked with doctors and therapists to help implement the goal plans that would aid the children in finding better ways to cope and regulate their emotions. This work led her to pursue the IMH master's degree program so as to be able to work with children with trauma in intervention to buffer risk factors that impact their development. She plans to continue her education and research following her Mills education to pursue a clinical PhD, which will support her ultimate plan of becoming a therapist that works in early intervention with children and families.
Constance Jaramillo Constance Jaramillo is a psychology major on the accelerated infant mental health master’s degree track. She will complete her Mills BA in 2015 and her MA in IMH in 2016. Constance transferred to Mills College as a sophomore from Merritt College where she focused on courses in early childhood education. She worked in the lab during her junior year, assisting master’s degree students with their research. Constance’s thesis will investigate empathy and prosocial behavior in young children in relationship to their attachment security and family risk factors. After completing her Mills program, Constance plans to work in the field with at risk families. She will ultimately use her master’s thesis and extensive field work to apply for a doctoral clinical/developmental program to continue her goals to do research related to children and families at risk.
Kira Lewis is a graduate student in Mills Infant Mental Health master's degree program, combining her education with earning a teaching credential in Early Childhood Special Education. She graduated with in BA in Psychology at Mills College in 2013 and will complete her graduate program in fall 2015. Kira worked as an early childhood educator for nine years before coming to Mills, including positions at a domestic violence center and crisis nursery that supported families with trauma. Kira must complete two community internships to fulfill the requirements of her dual program. She completed her special education internship at a public special education preschool, working with children with autism. She will continue her internship experience working at Early Head Start's Early Intervention program. She also works at a local Oakland family resource center facilitating playgroups and parent education support. Kira's research interests include trauma, attachment, brain development, and culture. Her future goals are to become a licensed psychotherapist working with families who have experienced trauma.
Matisse Michalski is a graduate student in the Infant Mental Health Master’s Degree program who will complete the program in the spring of 2016. Matisse received her BA in Theater and Peace Studies at Goucher College in Baltimore. She has over 15 years of experience with children in many different settings, including teacher, nanny, child care-provider, and camp counselor. Excited to return to academia, Matisse is interested in learning more about infants and very young children. She hopes to work with families to promote healthy attachment and bright futures, especially with high-risk families.
Kelsey Nibbelink is a psychology major who plans to join the infant mental health program. She will complete her Mills BA in spring 2016, and her masters degree in infant mental health in spring 2017. Kelsey transferred to Mills as a junior from California College of the Arts and has an extensive background in childhood development and in importance of artistic expression in childhood. Kelsey is assisting with graduate and faculty lab research and transcription. Her interest in infant mental health is primarily focused in early attachment and pattern development based on parent/child communication and involvement.
Britta Shine is a graduate student combining the Infant Mental Health and Child Life in Hospitals master’s degree programs, and she will complete the dual program requirements in fall 2015. She came to Mills with a BA in Women's Studies from Smith College. Before returning to school to pursue a graduate degree, Britta worked with children with autism and then spent five years as a preschool teacher. Britta will complete her IMH practicum (2014-2015) as an intern at the Infant-Parent Program (IPP) at San Francisco General Hospital, working as a therapeutic shadow for children in preschools in need of intervention. Her research interests include attachment theory, hospitalized infants and young children, and the role of environment in mediating behavior and growth. Britta's future plans are to work with community clinics and outreach programs for under-served populations, helping families to identify developmental strengths and problems that can be addressed through early intervention.
Rachel Tissell is a psychology major on the accelerated infant mental health master’s degree track. She will complete her Mills BA in 2015 and her master's degree in infant mental health in 2016. Rachel transferred to Mills as a junior from Bellevue College in Bellevue, Washington. She worked in the lab during her junior year, assisting master’s degree students with their research. Rachel’s master’s thesis will examine how trauma, stress, and psychiatric symptoms are related to mothers’ caregiving representations and behaviors, and how these experiences contribute to intergenerational transmission of parenting and development in young children. She plans to continue her education to pursue a doctoral degree in developmental psychology. Long-term, Rachel has her sights set on the screening and diagnoses of mental health and developmental disorders in infancy and early childhood in the context of culture and community.
Lauren Lee Wray is a psychology major due to graduate with her BA in fall 2015. She came to Mills as junior transfer student from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, after taking some time off to begin her family. Lauren is especially interested in early childhood attachment and its implications for later in life. She plans to get a PhD program in clinical psychology and is working in the lab to get research experience assisting IMH master’s degree students. Her clinical goals are to work with adolescent girls with PTSD. She would like to implement Equine Assisted Psychotherapy into her practice.
Shiyu Zhang is a graduate student in the Mills Infant Mental Health Program and will complete her master's degree in May 2016. She came to Mills with a BA in psychology and a minor in sociology from University of Minnesota. During these years, she was a research assistant in several psychology labs. Her own research interests included environmental factors that predict juvenile delinquency and preventions and interventions for delinquent behaviors. After graduation, she participated in Dr. Carol George’s Adult Attachment Protective System training at Mills College. Shiyu plans to continue her education and research in clinical psychology at a doctoral level and ultimately become a therapist that works with at risk youth and their families.