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Graduate Students

Kayla Brown, M.S.

Kayla Brown is a fourth-year doctoral student in the Developmental Psychology program at Penn State working with Dr. Erika Lunkenheimer. She received her B.S. in General Science from Penn State in 2014. She then spent two years studying temperament and attentional bias in children and adolescents with Dr. Koraly Perez-Edgar and Dr. Kristin Buss. Her research interests focus on how parent-child dyadic interactions act as risk or resilience factors for child maltreatment. In particular, she is focused on investigating the relationship between temperament, parent-child interaction patterns, and parent-child coregulation.

Frances Lobo, M.S.

Frances Lobo is a fourth-year doctoral student in the Developmental Psychology program at Penn State working with Drs. Erika Lunkenheimer and Kristin Buss. She received her B.S. in Neuroscience and Psychology from Duke University in 2013 and spent the following three years studying self-regulation in adolescents and college students with Dr. Rick Hoyle. Her research interests include understanding how family systems promote or inhibit child health, well-being, achievement, and resilience. Specifically, she would like to investigate how parental attitudes, beliefs, and discipline style can impact co-regulation within the parent-child dyad and mold the child’s goals and self-regulation skills. In her free time, Frances enjoys hiking, reading, cheering on the Green Bay Packers, singing, and playing her flute and ukulele. 

Catherine Diercks, M.S.

Catherine (Hamby) Diercks is a third-year doctoral student in the Developmental Psychology program at Penn State working with Drs. Erika Lunkenheimer and Douglas Teti. She completed her B.S. in Psychology at the University of Oregon in 2015, where she spent the following two years investigating the effectiveness of preventive parenting interventions with Dr. Philip Fisher and exploring the everyday audio/visual landscape of infants with Dr. Caitlin Fausey. In pursuing her Ph.D., Catherine hopes to further understand aspects of everyday family interactions that serve as protective factors against maltreatment in the parent-child dyad.