Colleen R. O'Neal is lab director of the Emotions, Equity, and Education Lab and assistant professor of School Psychology in the College of Education at the University of Maryland, College Park (Department of Counseling, Higher Education, and Special Education).
Her primary research goals are to identify resilience processes among refugee, immigrant, and ethnic minority students with a focus on emotions and stress, and how to turn resilience processes into preventive interventions. She conducts research asking: (1) HOW stress impacts ethnic minority student mental health and academic functioning, (2) WHAT socioemotional learning (e.g., emotion engagement), motivation (e.g., grit), emotion regulation and relationship-based protective factors prevent the negative impact of stress on academic functioning, (3) WHO benefits from supports in the face of stress, and (4) HOW to promote socioemotional and systemic change via preventive interventions, with one of the goals being to facilitate emotionally supportive and culturally responsive schools.
Dr. O'Neal earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from Long Island University in 2000 with NIMH predoctoral fellowship support studying emotions among minority youth facing community violence. She then completed an NIMH postdoctorate in Mental Health Statistics at NYU focused on multilevel, longitudinal analyses of change and psychometrics. She received her B.A. in Psychology at Cornell University and a master's degree in Child and Family Studies at Auburn University. Her work has been published in venues such as School Psychology International, School Psychology Quarterly, Child Development, Journal of Child Psychiatry and Psychology, and Development and Psychopathology. She recently completed minority stress and emotions research supported by a Brain and Behavior Foundation Young Investigator Award, a Fulbright Scholar Award, and a Fulbright New Leaders Group Award.
Ranga Atapattu is a post-intern doctoral candidate in the School Psychology program at UMD. Her research interests include resilience and social support. Before coming to UMD, Ranga received her B.A. in Psychobiology from Swarthmore College.
Alyssa Daye is a fifth year student in the School Psychology program who came to UMD from Arizona State University. Her research interests include ethnic and racial identity, the impacts of affirmation interventions, student engagement, and test anxiety. She is currently completing her internship year.
Gabriella Estevez is a fifth year doctoral student in the school psychology program, and she is currently completing her internship. Her research interests include the effects of racial discrimination on the academic achievement of minority students and social emotional learning. Gabriella received a B.A. in English and a B.A. in Psychology from Rutgers University - New Brunswick, as well as an M.A. in School Psychology from the University of Maryland.
Leyla Babaturk is a fourth-year doctoral student in the school psychology program. She is interested in the effects of stress on the academic achievement of minority students. Other research interests include social-emotional learning, mental health, and emotion regulation. Leyla received a B.A. in Psychology as well as an M.A. in School Psychology from the University of Maryland.
Kristin Meyering is a third year doctoral student in the school psychology program. Her research interests include the effects of stress on students academic outcomes as well as risk and resiliency factors related to achievement in minority populations. Kristin received a B.A. in Psychology from Georgetown University as well as an M.A. in School Psychology from the University of Maryland.
Shannon is a 2nd year doctoral student in the School Psychology program. Coming to the program as a nationally certified school psychologist, Shannon has more than 7 years of experience as a school psychologist in elementary and secondary public school settings. That experience informed her research interests which include multicultural competencies and anti-racist attitudes and behaviors in teachers, participatory culture-specific consultation between schools and community entities, and mindfulness practices as intervention -- each with the broader goal of supporting resilience processes in K-12 settings for students with marginalized identities. Shannon is also a yoga practitioner and teacher, and received her B.A. in English Writing and B.S. in Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh, along with her MS.Ed and Advanced Graduate Certificate from the City University of New York, Brooklyn College.
Hayley Weinberg is a second year doctoral student in the school psychology program. Her research interests include the relationship between language abilities and emotion regulation skills in elementary school students. Hayley received a B.A. in Psychology and a B.S. in Brain and Cognitive Sciences from the University of Rochester and an M.A. in Psychology from Boston University.
Janisa Hui is a first year doctoral student in the School Psychology program. Her research interests include early childhood mental health, parenting, socioemotional development and family-school partnership. Janisa received a Ed.M. in Human Development and Psychology from Harvard University and a B.A. in American Studies and Language and Communications from the University of Hong Kong.
Stephanie Cerrato (she/they) is a first year doctoral student in the School Psychology program at UMD. Her research interests include resiliency, mental health outcomes, and achievement in students with marginalized identities. Stephanie received a BA in Psychology from William & Mary.