Current Research Assistants

Estephania Ovalle

is a fourth year Psychology major (with a cognitive science minor). Her research interests lie in working with mental health and clinical disorders. She plans to get her PhD in clinical psychology and become a licensed clinical therapist. Her goal is to have a clinical practice while also conducting research because she believes they would support each other bidirectionally in the sense that her research can help improve her understanding, care, and intervention for her patients, and her clinical work can help her find gaps in research that we need to learn more about.  Estephania joined the CALMA lab for many reasons, one of them being because of her great interest in understanding the needs in underrepresented groups; her family is Colombian so she felt like that might help her cultural understanding in the work we do. Additionally, she took abnormal psychology with Dr. Chavira. She has a great interest in anxiety and depression so she knew it would be a great fit. Estephania likes to spend most of her free time painting, practicing mindfulness, and she tries to help others whenever she can. Her family and friends mean so much to her as well.

Emma Ong

Emma Ong is a third year Psychology major and Spanish minor interested in minority mental health issues. She hopes to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology with a focus on cultural factors as well as children and adolescents, and aims to serve her community as a researcher and therapist. She is thankful to have joined the CALMA lab because of her passion for its research on the unique psychological qualities and needs of underserved groups. In her free time, Emma enjoys playing the cello and taiko, exploring museums, and working with kids.

Ignacio Calderon
Graduated with a B.S. in Psychology from San Diego State University. His goal is to open a research center focused on undeserved Latinos living in rural communities and creating partnerships with academic institutions among the southern Mexican border in order to benefit Latinos on both sides.