I first developed a love of academia as a kid growing up in the small town of Oberlin, Ohio, where I spent most of high school attempting to impersonate an Oberlin College student. I went east for college at Yale University, where I double-majored in English and Psychology, and then west for graduate school at UCLA. As a graduate student, I explored how everyday marital functioning shaped couples' cortisol patterns at the Center for the Everyday Lives of Families. Post-Ph.D, I completed my clinical internship at a veteran's hospital in LA, and then received an NRSA post-doctoral fellowship to work with Gayla Margolin on the USC Family Studies Project. Since coming to USC, I have studied the association between family conflict and adolescent development, including cortisol patterns and neural responses to social and emotional stimuli. I'm currently collecting data for a new study, the HATCH study, which follows couples from pregnancy to postpartum and measures their hormonal and neural responses to parenthood. My work is unified by an interest in how relationship contexts influence health, especially during critical life junctures like the transition through puberty and the transition into parenthood. In a former life, I was an aficionado of the local indie rock scene in LA. Now my most adventurous hobby is reading, and I can usually be found at home with my two kids and my husband Dan, a music producer.

Experience

  • –present
    Assistant Professor of Psychology, University of Southern California – Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences