DR. NICHOLAS ALLAN

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Dr. Allan is an assistant professor of clinical psychology at Ohio University and a director of FEAR Lab. He received his Ph.D. from Florida State University in 2016 in clinical psychology. Dr. Allan’s program of research is focused on disentangling the role of risk factors in the etiology of emotional distress disorders (i.e., mood and anxiety). In line with the RDOC approach advanced by NIMH, Dr. Allan conducts his research through a translational research framework in which basic science is used to inform clinical practice and vice versa. This approach is optimized as a multidisciplinary approach involving integration of multiple units of analysis. Dr. Allan is particularly interested in integrating neurophysiological (EEG), experimental, and self-report approaches to studying risk factors for emotional distress disorders. He also is focused on utilizing advanced quantitative approaches, particularly structural equation modeling to answer his research questions.

Within a translational framework, Dr. Allan explores the complex relations between risk factors that have been implicated in multiple emotional distress disorders (i.e., transdiagnostic risk factors). Examples of such risk factors include anxiety sensitivity (AS; fear of anxious arousal), intolerance of uncertainty (IU; the inability to tolerate the possibility of current and future negative events), and distress tolerance (DT; the perceived ability to tolerate distressing emotions). Targeting these and other risk factors independently, and in tandem, Dr. Allan’s research encompasses three interrelated aims: (1) to develop an empirically-based model of transdiagnostic risk factors for emotional distress disorders (2) to design indices of transdiagnostic risk factors across psychometric, behavioral, and neurophysiological units of analysis, and (3) to determine the mechanistic role of transdiagnostic risk factors as brief intervention targets for emotional distress disorders.

Graduate Students

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Kevin Saulnier

Graduate Student on Internship

Kevin is currently on internship at Hershey Medical Center. One of his primary research goals is to better understand the etiology of social anxiety. In particular, Kevin is interested in investigating how perfectionism and related constructs confer risk for social anxiety. Additionally, Kevin is interested in better understanding the multidimensionality of the depression syndrome, and the onset of depression symptoms. In conjunction with these research interests, Kevin is interested in using multiple units of analysis, particularly physiological measures, to investigate the relations between constructs related to mood and anxiety disorders. In his free time Kevin enjoys playing soccer, going on hikes, and watching movies.

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AnnMarie Huet

4th year doctoral student with M.S.

Ann graduated from Iowa State University Honors College with a B.S. in Psychology with minors in English and Biology. At Iowa State, she worked as a research assistant in the Temporal Dynamics: Thinking and Decision Making Lab under Dr. Robert West. Along with this, Ann also played a fundamental role in the re-establishment and use of the Neuro Lab within the College of Business under the supervision of Dr. Todd Thornock. Ann is currently a fourth year graduate student in the clinical psychology doctoral program at Ohio University. Her research interests lie in the etiology, maintenance, and treatment of anxiety disorders, with a concentration on the relations between ERP components, within-person and between-person daily variability, and emotional regulation.

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Caroline Gooch

5th year doctoral student with M.S.

Caroline is a fifth year doctoral student. She received her B.S. in Psychology from Penn State University in 2017. She is interested in psychotherapy process and outcome research, particularly evidence-based psychotherapy personalization. Caroline is also interested in borderline personality pathology and risk factors for suicidality and self-harm including emotion regulation and distress tolerance.

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Kateryna Kolnogorova

5th year doctoral student with M.S.

Kate is a fifth year graduate student of the Clinical Program. She is interested in the risk factors and factor structure of anxiety disorders and in improvement of treatments for these disorders. Kate is currently working on projects that involve brief in-person and computerized treatments targeting transdiagnostic risk factors of anxiety disorders. She is interested in implementing ecological momentary assessment and treatment for anxiety and mood disorders. In addition, Kate is interested in disentangling common and specific factors of PTSD symptom clusters and in reducing suicidal ideation and behavior in people with PTSD. She combines neurophysiological and behavioral measurements in her research. In her free time, Kate enjoys having conversations with people, listening to audiobooks, dancing, and travelin

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Shahrzad Moradi

5th year doctoral student with M.S.

Shahrzad graduated from The Florida State University with a B.S. in psychology and two minors in statistics and child development. There, she worked as a research assistant for Dr. Christopher Patrick, studying psychopathy, impulse control, and anxiety and mood disorders, and Dr. Jesse Cougle, studying the biological, cognitive and behavioral aspects of anxiety disorders. Currently, Shahrzad is a fifth year graduate student in the clinical psychology PhD program at the Ohio University, under the mentorship of Dr. Nicholas Allan. Her research interests include the etiology, maintenance, and treatment of anxiety and mood disorders in the child/adolescent and adult populations. She is particularly interested in neurophysiological investigation, with a concentration on biobehavioral risk factors and their relation to developmental psychopathology.

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Brandon Koscinski

3rd year doctoral student with M.A.

Brandon is a third year Clinical Psychology Ph.D. student working in the fear lab. As an undergraduate and Master’s student, Brandon focused on cognitive risk factors that predispose individuals to depressive disorders, particularly in the realm of autobiographical memory deficits (i.e., overgeneral memory) at the University at Buffalo. He is interested in understanding the shared and unique risk factors for anxiety and depressive disorders, particularly through the use of hierarchical models that incorporate affective and cognitive components to better encapsulate risk for anxiety and depression. Additionally, Brandon is interested in further understanding how maladaptive cognitive processes (e.g., rumination and worry) confer risk to psychopathology on a day-to-day basis through the use of methodologies such as ecological momentary assessment or daily diary studies. When he is not doing work, Brandon enjoys playing video games, watching sports, and reading books.

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Catherine Accorso

3rd year doctoral student with M.A.

Catherine recently received her M.A. in Clinical Psychology from The College at Brockport – SUNY where she worked with Dr. Janet Gillespie studying depression and resilience qualities. She also graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a B.A. in Psychology and English and a minor in Italian Studies. At Notre Dame, she worked as a research assistant for Dr. Scott Monroe, studying stress, depression, and personality, and Dr. Anne Simons, studying Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, therapist competence, and client outcome. Catherine is a third year graduate student in the clinical psychology PhD program at Ohio University. Her research interests include the etiology, treatment, and prevention of mood disorders. She is particularly interested in the interplay between grit and the experience of stress and the development of depressive symptoms. In her spare time she enjoys reading and practicing yoga.

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Troy Folmer

1st year doctoral student

Troy is a product of the California State University, Fresno undergraduate psychology honors program where he received a B.A. and worked closely with Dr. Jennifer Isom-Schmidtke investigating the influence of Big Five personality traits on the development of interpersonal closeness in dyads. As an Alumnus, he worked closely with Dr. Matthew Sharps in his cognitive research lab exploring the impact of schizotypy, trait dissociation, and prior frameworks of understanding on the interpretation of climate change related stimuli. One of his primary research interests is the role of metacognition in the etiological pathway between transdiagnostic risk factors and the development of mood and anxiety disorders. Additionally, Troy is interested in the development and utilization of statistical approaches that integrate data from multiple levels of analysis to explore the nature of these disorders more effectively.

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Brittany Swansboro

1st year graduate student with M.S.

Brittany is a first year graduate student at Ohio University under the direction of Nicholas Allan. She earned her B.A. in History and Psychology at Lake Erie College and her M. A. in Clinical Psychology at Cleveland State University. After graduating she worked on an inpatient child and adolescent psychiatry unit, where she further focused both her research and clinical interests. Brittany is primarily interested in understanding the bidirectional relationship between stress and emerging mood and anxiety disorders, especially within adolescents and young adults. In her free time Brittany enjoys hiking, gardening, reading, crocheting, and, most of all, playing with her dog Copper.

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Sierra Flynt

1st year masters student

Sierra is a first year M.S. student studying experimental psychology in the FEAR Lab. She received her B.A. from Ohio University in spring 2021, majoring in Psychology & Sociology with minors in Communication Studies & Philosophy. Sierra’s research interests are broad, including resilience, vulnerability, trauma, and substance use. She is currently involved in multiple studies under the guidance of Dr. Allan and is the project coordinator for three. After graduating, she plans to begin a hands-on career in psychiatric care before either pursuing her doctorate in Psychology or her clinical counseling license. In her spare time, Sierra enjoys hiking, true crime, and coloring.

Lab Managers/Coordinators

Kylee Finkes

BERP Lead

Kylee is a fourth-year psychology major, with a minor in biology. In the psychology field her interests reside in generalized anxiety disorder as well as stress. After graduation she plans to attend graduate school for Occupational Therapy. In her free time she loves to dance and do ceramics!

Kimberlea Czulewicz

Social Media Coordinator

Kimberlea is a fourth-year student with a major in Psychology and a minor in Sociology. She is interested in understanding the effect of anxiety and mood disorders in the adolescent population and gaining clinical experience in the FEAR lab. After graduation, she is interested in pursuing a master’s degree in clinical mental health counseling and hopes to become a licensed therapist. Kimberlea is from Cincinnati, Ohio and in her free time she likes to watch movies and listen to true crime podcasts. A fun fact about her is she enjoys painting, especially custom paintings of cats.

Carmen Sanchez

MEMA Manager

I am Carmen Sanchez, I am a senior psychology major with a minor in Spanish and English. I work with both the FEAR lab and the SNAP lab under Dr. Mischkowski. I plan to graduate from OU in May 2022 and pursue higher education in clinical psychology. I want to go into research but have other interests within the field of psychology. I am really interested in the neurology side of psychology, specifically in higher order processes and cognitions within the brain and enjoy learning about the conceptual mechanisms we all have. I am also very interested in personality and the ways in which traits interact with behaviors and thought patterns. An interesting thing about me is that music is one of my passions. I have been involved in music for a long time and have played many different instruments ranging from woodwinds to strings to percussion. It is one of the few things that really brings me joy.

Research Assistants

Allie Binkiewicz

Allie is a junior at Ohio University from Painesville, Ohio, currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in psychology and a minor in Biology. She hopes to further her academic career by attending graduate school (Ph.D.) to become a practicing and research-oriented clinical psychologist. Allie hopes to specialize in the study of anxiety disorders, especially pertaining to their relations to dysautonomia and other dysfunctions of the nervous system; she has interest in Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy techniques, as well as Mindfulness-Based Intervention for the treatment of such disorders, relative to psychology. In her free time, Allie enjoys spending time with her two dachshunds, her sister, and playing video games with her friends

Niamh Buckley

Niamh Buckley is a sophomore majoring in psychology. She is interested in researching the physiological factors associated with anxiety and mood disorders. She hopes to attend graduate school and study clinical neuropsychology. Niamh likes to spend her free time reading and hanging out with friends.

Kira Burch

Kira is a freshman at Ohio University from Columbus, Ohio. She is interested in researching cognitive and biological psychology. Outside of the lab, she likes to sing along to music and look at cute animals.

Christa Burton

Christa is a senior at Ohio University with majors in Psychology and Sociology-Criminology as well as a Certificate in Law, Justice, and Culture. She will also be pursuing a Certificate in Forensic Studies. She is excited to learn more about research and gain experience through the FEAR Lab. Her research interests include mood and anxiety disorders as well as the impacts of stress and perfectionism on emotional health and daily functioning. She hopes to volunteer at, shadow, and/or intern within a corrections facility in Ohio. She plans to attend graduate school for Clinical Psychology. One fun fact about Christa is that she was born in Richmond, Virginia. She enjoys spending time with her friends and family, being outside, and volunteering with the organizations she is a part of.

Emily Drenen

Emily is a sophomore at Ohio University from Cleveland, Ohio. She is currently majoring in Psychology! She is interested in researching new, cutting edge, therapies for abnormal psychology. She is especially interested in Autism Spectrum Disorder, personality disorders and anxiety related disorders. After graduation Emily plans on pursuing a doctoral degree in Counseling. In her free time, Emily enjoys spending quality time with friends and relaxing outside!

Kelly Lojinger

Kelly Lojinger is a junior at Ohio University majoring in Psychology. She is interested in studying risk factors associated with developmental disorders. After graduation, she hopes to attend graduate school to pursue a career in clinical child psychology, as well as possibly becoming a psychology professor. In free time, Kelly likes to spend time with her friends and watch her favorite reality TV shows!

Desha Palmer

Desha is a senior at Ohio University majoring in Psychology and Sociology/Criminology with a certificate in Diversity Studies. Her research interests involve the study of criminal behavior, specifically biological, social and psychological factors. After graduation, she plans to attend graduate school and earn her masters in Forensic Psychology. In her free time she enjoys spending time with friends and family, playing with her dogs Coco and Sugar, or just watching a good show/movie.

Lexi Rhoads

I am currently a senior at Ohio University majoring in psychology. After I graduate in the fall I plan on continuing my studies and get a masters in clinical psychology, specifically focusing on anxiety disorders. Outside of the lab I like hanging out with my roommates and watching bad reality tv.

Holli Schroder

Holli Schroder is a junior at Ohio University from South Point, Ohio, currently majoring in Psychology and minoring in Business Administration. Her research interests include personality disorders, mood and anxiety disorders, and how stress can impact different aspects of the human body. After graduation, Holli plans to pursue a doctorate degree is psychiatry and eventually own her own practice serving underserved populations. In her free time, she enjoys volunteering at the Athens County Dog Shelter, spending time with her cats, and playing video games.

Grace Silver

Grace Silver is a senior at OU, with a double major in psychology and sociology. Her research
interests include substance abuse disorders and anxiety. After graduation, she plans to attend
grad school to pursue clinical psychology. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with family
and friends and going on long trail rides with her horse, May.

Taylor Whittington

Taylor Whittington is a senior at Ohio University, currently majoring in both Biological Sciences and Psychology with a certificate in LGBTQ studies. Her research interests encompass anything that explores the biological connection and components to mental disorders; specifically, in the FEAR Lab, she enjoys working with EEG during her lab runs. Taylor plans on pursuing a doctorate in psychiatry, and eventually starting her own practice of psychiatric counseling with a focus on LGBTQ youth. In her free time, Taylor enjoys running and playing / listening to music.

Taylor Williams

Taylor is a senior at Ohio University majoring in psychology and minoring in biology. She has been apart of the Fear Lab for 2 years. After graduation, she is interested in pursuing a career in Neuropsychology and eventually attending graduate school. The Fear Lab for Taylor has been a great experience and has allowed her to expand her knowledge and networks in many ways. In her free time, Taylor enjoys random adventures with friends and spending time with her pitbull Boone, and pomeranian Nema. She is excited for all this semester has to offer and to continuing her learning with the Fear Lab.