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Department of Psychology at Illinois



Hello psychology alumni!
We hope you enjoy reading about some of the news and events 

from around the department.


Psychology’s “Hotdogger”

Burger and co-driver on top of the Bun Roof. 
Burger and co-driver on top of the Bun Roof. 

Each year thousands of college graduates apply for twelve Oscar Mayer Wienermobile spokesperson openings and Kelly Burger (BS ’15) is the first Illini to hold this job.

Read more about Burger’s experiences here.


What's Your Story?

 Ryan Graff
 Ryan Graff

Ryan Graff (BS ’96)

I am currently the Vice President of Program Development & Participant Opportunities for The First Tee, a youth development organization that uses the game of golf to teach life skills (interpersonal skills, self-management skills, goal setting and resiliency skills) and character education to youth between the ages of 7 to 18 years.

 Tynisa Gaines
 Tynisa Gaines

Tynisa Gaines (BS ’98)

I am an Enrolled Agent which is the highest license granted to a tax professional to represent clients before the IRS nationwide. In my private tax practice, even though clients are not literally on my couch, I use my psychology degree daily to organize the relevance of their personal information for their tax return. Although, difficult sometimes, I limit my recommendations to tax advice.

Read more stories here.

 Daniel Storage and Andrei Cimpian
 (Photo by L. Brian Stauffer, Public Affairs)

“Black & Brilliant? A female genius? Not according to RateMyProfessor study finds”

A new study led by graduate student Daniel Storage (left), and Associate Professor Andrei Cimpian found that students in higher education associate “brilliance” and “genius” more often with male professors and with academic disciplines in which women and African-Americans are underrepresented. Read more. 

Joshua Gulley and Shuo Kang 
(Photo by L. Brian Stauffer, Public Affairs) 

Rat study reveals long-term effects of adolescent amphetamine abuse on the brain

Associate Professor Joshua Gulley, left, graduate student Shuo Kang and their colleagues found that amphetamine abuse in young rats led to changes in dopamine signaling in the brain that persisted into adulthood. Read more.



Psychology’s Rising Stars

Louis Tay (PhD ’11), Eva Telzer, Assistant Professor in our Developmental Division, and Naomi Sadeh (PhD ’12) were selected as Rising Stars by the Association for Psychological Science. Rising Star designation recognizes outstanding psychological scientists in the earliest stages of their research post-PhD. Follow this link for more information.

Louis Tay is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences (Industrial/Organizational) at West Lafayette-Purdue University. 

Eva Telzer is an Assistant Professor in our Developmental Division. 

Naomi Sadeh is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Boston University School of Medicine, and principal investigator in the Behavioral Science Division of the National Center for PTSD at V.A. Boston Healthcare System.

Louis Tay, Eva Teller, and Naomi Sadeh.
Louis Tay, Eva Teller, and Naomi Sadeh.
 Sepideh Sadaghiani Friberg
 Sepideh Sadaghiani Friberg

New Faculty

Sepideh Sadaghiani Friberg is an Assistant Professor in the Cognitive Neuroscience Division and full-time faculty at the Beckman Institute. Her work investigates how the function of higher-order brain areas modulates the way humans perceive and interact with the world. Follow this link for more information about her research. 

Nkechinyelum A. Chioneso 
Nkechinyelum A. Chioneso 

Introducing the PSC Assistant Director

Nkechinyelum A. Chioneso is Assistant Director of the Psychological Services Center (PSC). She provides leadership in the development and implementation of community engagement efforts for the Clinical-Community Division by developing both supportive relationships and relevant services with the campus and larger community.

Visit this page for more information about the PSC.


 Seong Hee Cho and Emily Hankosky
 Seong Hee Cho and Emily Hankosky

Undergraduate Teaching Awards

Congratulations to Seong Hee Cho (Industrial/Organizational Division, top) and Emily Hankosky (Behavioral Neuroscience; below) who are the 2016 recipients of Psychology’s Award for Excellence in Teaching by a Graduate Teaching Assistant. Cho is also the recipient of the College of LAS & Provost’s Award for Graduate Teaching.



Psychology Alumni Advisory Board Travel Awards

The Psychology Alumni Advisory Board has designated funds from the Shape the Future Today Fund to support graduate student conference travel. Presenting at conferences is a vital part of any graduate student’s career, both to develop important connections, and to solicit feedback on research and ideas.

Faith Shin (Social-Personality Division) and Camarin Meno (Clinical-Community Division)
Faith Shin (Social-Personality Division) and Camarin Meno (Clinical-Community Division)

Read about Faith, Camarin, and the other graduate recipients on this page. 

(L-R): Randy Bell (BS 98), Jay Guelfi (BS 96), Noam Segal (PhD 16) 
(L-R): Randy Bell (BS 98), Jay Guelfi (BS 96), Noam Segal (PhD 16) 

“First Friday of the Month” Alumni Panel

The Psychology Alumni Advisory Board created a new a mentoring opportunity for undergraduates and alumni. The “First Friday of the Month” panel discussions help current students explore career options. Contact Cheryl Berger, Assistant Head for Alumni Relations, if you would like to be part of a future panel discussion. Read more.

Previous topic (pictured on left): “How do I use my Psychology degree for a career in IT.”


Leadership Development Workshop

SAVE THE DATE!! Psychology’s Leadership Development Workshop for undergraduate students is scheduled on September 23 & 24, 2016. The workshop will include a team competition with students analyzing a problem and presenting their recommendations to a panel of judges. Psychology alumnus Sean Chou (BS ’95), co-founder and CEO of Catalytic, and his work colleagues will comprise the panel of judges. Stay tuned for more information!

 Rafaella Stifelmann
 Rafaella Stifelmann

2017 Career Exploration Night

“What I like most about the U of I is the amount of opportunities students get to network and meet incredible people that were once in our shoes. I enjoyed Psychology’s Career Night very much.”
Rafaella Stifelmann, sophomore in Psychology (Photograph by David In)

Contact Cheryl Berger, Assistant Head for Alumni Relations at (217) 333-3429 or if you are interested in participating in our 2017 event. Visit our 2016 Career Exploration Night photo gallery. 

psychology student 

Shape the Future Today

The Psychology Alumni Advisory Board is committed to enhancing the educational experience of psychology students. The alumni board has created several initiatives to help students prepare for careers post-graduation including: Professional Development Awards, Career Exploration Awards, and Leadership Development Workshops. Read more about the board’s initiatives here.

 Psychology Leaders at the "I Love Illinois Week" event table.
 Psychology Leaders at the "I Love Illinois Week" event table.

I Love Illinois Week

Bad weather did not keep students from stopping by the Psychology Leaders table for their “I Love Illinois Week” event. Students could spin a wheel to win either a psychology pen, T-shirt, or a water bottle after they wrote what they loved about psychology on orange “I” posters. Visit our photo gallery.

Mae Donaldson and Brian Ross, executive associate dean, at the award ceremony. 
Mae Donaldson and Brian Ross, executive associate dean, at the award ceremony. 

LAS Staff Award

Mae Donaldson, Accountant II in Psychology’s Business Office, is the 2016 recipient of the College of LAS Staff Award.

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Become a Psychology Facebook Fan

Find us at “University of Illinois Psychology Department” and keep up-to-date on important news and events.

 alumna in psychology t-shirt

Stay in Touch with Psychology

Where have you worn your commemorative Psychology T-shirt? Share your pictures with us and you can be featured in Psychology Times. Send pictures to Cheryl Berger.

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Network on Linkedin

Join Psychology’s alumni networking group “University of Illinois Department of Psychology” Networking and expand your professional network.

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Update Your Information!

Update us on your latest news and current email address.

Psychology Times, Fall issue cover 


Read the Latest Issue of Psychology Times

Read the newsletter.

LAS eNewsletter image - April 2016 


LAS News

Read the latest edition of the LAS eNewsletter.


Diversity in Psychology

The members of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Department of Psychology are committed to fostering and supporting a climate of inclusion, celebrating human diversity in all its forms, and engaging in cutting edge diversity science. For more information about diversity research in psychology, diversity awards, and campus resources visit this page on our website


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