Research Assistants

Maya Beninteso

I am a second-year undergraduate student working towards a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a minor in Criminology. I have been a research assistant in the Close Relationships Lab since June 2022. My research interests include: the effects of Adverse Childhood Experiences on relationship stability, intimate partner violence, stagnation, and other factors leading to relationship dissolution. In the coming years, I hope to complete a Master of Arts and PhD in Clinical Psychology, so that I may achieve my goal of becoming a Clinical Psychologist.

Stephanie Elder

 

I completed my BA with a Psychology Major and Minor in Counselling and Human Development in April of 2022 from SFU. I’m interested in boundary-setting and communication styles and strategies in romantic, platonic, and familial relationships. Outside of SFU, I volunteer and work for a children’s summer camp, Camp Artaban. I also work with the Looking Glass Foundation with people with eating disorders, and as a Crisis Line Responder for KidsHelpPhone. I hope to go on to a graduate program for a M.Ed. in Counselling Psychology in the fall of 2023. 

Lee Fraser

I completed my B.A. in December 2021, majoring in Psychology with a minor in Cognitive Science. I have been a research assistant with the Close Relationships Lab since February 2022, and am also a research assistant with Dr. Jennifer Hinnell’s gesture research. My research interests include communication and conflict resolution in romantic relationships, as well as differences in goal setting and motivation between single individuals and those in romantic relationships. I plan to pursue a Masters in Counselling Psychology in 2023. I currently work with adults with developmental disabilities doing goal planning and skill development, and have previously worked with kids, teens, and adults as a coach or facilitator in skill development, leadership, and communication.

Carissa Gauthier

I transferred from the University of Winnipeg in 2019 and am currently a third year undergraduate student at SFU. I am working toward my Bachelors of Arts with a Major in Psychology. I am hoping to do my Honours in the fall of 2022 and graduate soon after. I have been part of the Close Relationships Lab since May 2021 and am also part of Dr. Girme’s Relationships and Wellbeing Lab since January 2021. I am particularly interested in consensual non-monogamous relationships, sex therapy and education for youth on developing healthy intimate relationships. I hope to pursue a MA and eventually a PhD in Clinical Psychology with a focus on romantic relationships.

Aman Grewal

I am a 4th year undergraduate student completing my Bachelors in psychology. I hope to do my honours in psychology and pursue masters and Ph.D  in clinical psychology. I’m interested in evaluating the effects of changing societal and cultural trends/norms on couples in non-heteronormative relationships. Furthermore, I am also interested in researching the intersection of behavioural responses, societal influences and neurobiology of the brain.

In the future I would like to apply my training and knowledge to help improve accuracy and reliability of current diagnostic methodology and treatment modalities for mental health disorders.

Annie Hayward

I completed my BA (Honours) in Psychology at UBC in 2019. Throughout my degree, I focused on depression, stress, and hormonal contraception. Since graduating, I have become interested in relationship psychology, especially as it relates to stress and emotion regulation. Outside of this lab, I am also a research assistant at Dr. Chen’s Social Health Lab at UBC. I hope to study relationships in graduate school for clinical psychology. 

Michelle Korlacka

I recently graduated from SFU with a B.A. Honours degree in Psychology and a minor in Counselling and Human Development. I have been a research assistant at the Close Relationships Lab since June 2020 and fulfilled the Lab Coordinator role from June 2021. My research interests are in the intersection of close relationships and mental health. Specifically, how close relationship support processes can promote adaptive emotion regulation. In line with these interests, I completed my honours thesis under the supervision of Dr. Cobb with Dr. Chapman as the secondary reader. This study examined whether partner support that matches individuals’ attachment insecurities buffers the negative effects of insecurities on newlywed spouses’ emotional expression and discussion quality. I will be beginning my graduate studies at the University of Waterloo's Clinical Psychology program in the fall of 2022.

Jane Landsky

I am an undergraduate student working toward a Bachelor of Arts degree with a Major in Psychology, here at SFU. My research interests include attachment security, conflict within close relationships, and how couples support each other. I am also very interested in evolutionary origins of concepts in close relationships, like jealousy. I plan to pursue a Med in Counselling Psychology following my undergraduate degree. I have been a research assistant in the lab since July 2021.

Nushaiba Nanjiba

I am a third-year undergraduate student at SFU. I am working towards my Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology along with a minor in Counselling and Human Development. I have been a research assistant at the Close Relationships lab since November 2021. My research interests include the emergence of non-monogamous relationships, intimate partner violence, conflict resolution in romantic relationships, and cultural differences in romantic relationships. I am planning to pursue a master’s in counselling psychology. In my future work, I want to use my knowledge in psychology to provide a culturally sensitive approach to couples from diverse backgrounds.

Tristan Raymond

I transferred to SFU from Ryerson University in Toronto back in 2018, and was recently accepted into the Honours program for Psychology. I have been a research assistant in Dr. Yuthika Girme’s Supporting Relationships and Wellbeing Lab and am currently a manager of Dr. Tanya Broesch’s Culture and Development Lab. As part of my Honours project I am currently investigating the quality of father-infant free play interaction and its association with infant attachment security. My broader research interests include underlying motivations and outcomes of consensually non-monogamous relationships in their various configurations. To continue pursuing relationship research, I plan on applying for an MA (and PhD) in clinical psychology.

Aisha Richmond

I am a third-year undergraduate student at SFU majoring in psychology and minoring in counseling and human development. I am aiming to graduate with honors and pursue graduate school in clinical psychology later on. My research interests include conflict communication, attachment style fluidity, and overcoming mismatches of support-seeking tendencies. Outside of the lab, I am also currently volunteering as a call responder at the Vancouver Crisis Centre. I have been a research assistant at the Close Relationships Lab since June 2022.

Selina Sobolewski 

I am currently working toward a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a minor in Counselling and Human Development. I hope to do my honours in psychology and go on to pursue post graduate studies in either counselling or clinical psychology. I am interested in both child and adult attachment, particularly the conceptualization and prevalence of disorganized and fearful attachment. Following that, the role this attachment style plays in close relationships across one’s lifespan. Other topics of interest include poor self-image, early trauma, social inclusion and exclusion, and the biology and psychology of pain. I have been a research assistant for the Close Relationships Lab since May 2021.

Asmeetha Subramaniam

I am a third-year undergraduate student working towards a Bachelor of Arts degree with a Major in Psychology and a Minor in Counselling and Human Development. In the upcoming years, I hope to pursue an Honours in Psychology and continue my education at the graduate level in Clinical Psychology. My research interests include the instability and fluidity of adult attachment styles. Specifically, I am interested in the interpersonal and intrapersonal variables that predict adult attachment style changes. Moreover, I am also very interested in the application of attachment research to clinical interventions such as Attachment-Based Therapy, and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. I have been a research assistant for the Close Relationships Lab since October 2021.

Kylie Viala

I am currently completing my BA in psychology, with a minor in criminology. I’ve been a student at SFU since 2019, and have been a research assistant for the Close Relationships Lab since February 2022. Outside of my studies, I volunteer as a call taker at the Fraser Health Crisis Line. Additionally, I have been a behavior interventionist, working with an autistic child for nearly two years. Although I am still defining my research interests, I see my future in clinical psychology and counselling and am looking to pursue graduate studies in the field.