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Undergraduate Seniors are Awarded the Borine Award for Spring 2020

All students graduating with a psychology major complete a capstone project during their senior year. This project demonstrates expertise in an area of psychological research. The Sharon Borine Award for Top Capstone was established to recognize the best of these projects every semester; Psychology Honor Students are nominated yearly for the top prize. Capstone Student projects are reviewed by section leaders, the course instructor, and a group of faculty reviewers in the Department of Psychology to select and rank the recipients. Honors students are nominated by their faculty mentor and submissions are evaluated and ranked by a faculty panel. Congratulations to the Spring 2020 recipients: Claudia Herbert, Samantha Gardow, Samuel Lee, and Rachel Jensen!
Headshots of Drs. Frazier, Meredith, and Nguyen-Feng

Helping students cope with stress during COVID-19

Patricia Frazier’s, PhD, research could not be more timely. This spring, Frazier, in collaboration with fellow counseling psychologists (and former PhD students!) Drs. Liza Meredith (UMN - Twin Cities) and Viann Nguyen-Feng (UM - Duluth), adapted a previously developed online intervention (Frazier et al., 2015; Hintz, Frazier, & Meredith, 2015; Meredith & Frazier, 2019; Nguyen-Feng et al., 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019) to evaluate its effectiveness in helping students cope with stress in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. 
Headshot of Dr. Monica Luciana

Teenagers and Sheltering-in-Place: Special Challenges

Monica Luciana, PhD, is concerned that measures like the COVID-19 shelter-in-place orders present unique challenges for adolescents. In her research, Luciana considers the scientific underpinnings of why adolescents engage in more risky behavior than either children or adults.  Currently, she is exploring why adolescents are so positively motivated to seek rewards, including a particularly potent source of reward for adolescents: the presence of peers.

Mann Receives 2020 COGS Outstanding Mentor Award

Traci Mann, PhD, professor in the Department of Psychology has received the 2020 Council of Graduate Students (COGS) Outstanding Mentor Award. Mann was considered for this award because of her outstanding work with graduate students. Erin Standen, graduate student in the social area, says, “We (as Traci Mann's graduate students) are so proud and so grateful to have her as our advisor!”

Snyder Discusses Volunteering on Dialogue Minnesota

Mark Snyder, PhD, professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Minnesota was invited to discuss helping and volunteering in our state during COVID-19 for Dialogue Minnesota’s latest episode entitled “Minnesotans Step Up To Help Despite the Pandemic.” Minnesota has one of the highest volunteer rates in the nation and while we are still under stay-at-home orders, our volunteering has not suffered. Snyder explains why people volunteer, and the benefits of volunteering for individuals, communities, and society.

May Means Mental Health

This semester has been historic, to say the least, but now as it comes to a close and finals begin it is an important time to remember that May is Mental Health Awareness month. This tradition was established in 1949 by the Mental Health America organization and has been a lasting observance ever since. Now more than ever it is crucial that we take this opportunity to evaluate our own emotions, thoughts, and mental states. While everyone has their own way to keep their mind healthy, here are some extra tips to incorporate during this quarantine.

Kersten quoted in MN Daily

Daniel Kersten, PhD, professor in the Department of Psychology shared his appreciation for Ken Holderman, a student who has made a commitment to life-long learning. An MN Daily article titled “Going back to school — at 74 — to pick up where Einstein left off” profiles Holderman who took Kersten’s course on Introduction to Neural Networks. Both Kersten and Holderman continue to benefit from the relationship they forged in the class.
Robert Krueger

Social upheaval and the enduring impact on mental well-being

Clinical psychologist Robert Krueger, PhD, can help us understand the impact of large-scale crises on the health and well-being of a society and its individuals, providing us with data that can drive decisions about public policy initiatives that help people in need while also being fiscally responsible.  The COVID-19 pandemic poses significant challenges to our society and our ability to respond because of how variable the impact has been across the country and within communities.

Federico and Others in the Washington Post on Politics and the Virus

Recently, Chris Federico and colleagues wrote a piece for the Washington Post discussing what research shows about the long-term chances that the current 'big government thinking' being embraced by conservatives might persist once the CORVID-19 pandemic subsides. These political psychology researchers suggest that 'yes' the 'thinking' may persist because programs supporting economic security are actually more in line with other conservative values such as order, stability, and traditionalism. If conservative leaders signify that government intervention in the economy is necessary for a sound and secure US, the 'new' normal may be 'new' indeed.

Luciana and Iacono Secure Millions in NIH Funding for the Study of Adolescent...

Professors Monica Luciana and William Iacono have secured a multi-million dollar grant extension from 2020 to 2027 for the landmark ABCD Study® - Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development℠. The University of Minnesota is one of 21 national sites involved in the study funded by the National Institutes of Health. ABCD is the largest long-term study of brain development and child health ever conducted in the United States (see https://abcdstudy.org/). The Minnesota Center for Twin and Family Research (MCTFR) houses the study at the U of M.

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