Student Events at APS 21st Annual Convention

Past APSSC President Kelli Vaughn-Blount
leads the Students Teaching Students panel.

Each convention, the APS Student Caucus (APSSC) delivers a full slate of student-oriented events for undergraduates and graduate students alike. This year’s program included symposia that recognized outstanding student research, as well as innovative workshops and panels. Student affiliates who attended the APS 21st Annual Convention received valuable information about graduate school, keys to publishing, and practical teaching tips. In addition to supplying indispensible information, these events provide excellent opportunities to connect and network with esteemed researchers and fellow students.
The APSSC Executive Board would like to thank all of the student volunteers (those smiling faces in the teal APS t-shirts), former Membership and Volunteers Officer Amy Crook, former Communications and Marketing Officer Jeremy Ashton Houska, APSSC Adviser Sara Hitzig, Louis Shomette, Kate Volpe, and all the APS staff who helped make these events possible. Last but not least, the APSSC is truly indebted to the many distinguished APS members, Champions, and panelists who imparted their knowledge and experience to students.
Planning is already underway for the 2010 Convention in Boston, so make your plans to be there May 27-30, 2010!

APS Student Caucus Convention Kickoff and Student Social
Chair: Kelli Vaughn-Blount
The APSSC Convention Kickoff and Student Social continues to break attendance records, with this year’s being the largest gathering on record. Attendees met fellow students and enjoyed the complimentary food and beverages provided by APS. The gathering also allowed the APSSC Board to introduce themselves and provide information about the upcoming student events.

Champions of Psychology
Chair: Lisa Hasel
The Champions of Psychology event remains one of the more popular APSSC convention events. The event featured a stellar group of Champions including John Cacioppo, Diane Halpern, Nancy Kanwisher, Bill McKeachie, Richard Nisbett, and Valerie Reyna. Student affiliates had the unique opportunity to sit down in an informal setting with these major figures in psychology and discuss scientific and professional issues.

APSSC President’s Symposium: Students Teaching Students
Chair: Kelli Vaughn-Blount
This event featured highly successful psychology teachers who shared their knowledge and experiences regarding the gray areas many face as both teachers and students. Panelists included Andrew Christopher (Albion College), Shelia Kennison (Oklahoma State University), Susan Nolan (Seton Hall University) and students Lisa Hasel (Iowa State University), Jeremy Ashton Houska (University of Nevada, Las Vegas), and James Vaughn (Oklahoma State University). Chronicle of Higher Education columnist David Glenn summed up the primary advice of the event in his column, “Psychology Grad Students Get Counseled on How to Teach”(05/26/09). Read David’s column at, and for additional advice, please visit the APSSC Website for a copy of the handout.

How to Get Published: Guidance from Journal Editors
Chair: Peter Vernig
This year’s How to Get Published: Guidance from Journal Editors panel featured three panelists with extensive experience as authors and editors. Martha Farah (University of Pennsylvania) discussed her experiences on both sides of authorship and provided tips and tricks she uses to help her students overcome barriers to effective scientific writing. Farah also discussed her experience as an associate editor of the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience. Valerie Reyna (Cornell University) provided insight on the editorial process from her work as an associate editor of the journals Psychological Science and Developmental Review. In particular, Reyna discussed how to deal with reviewer feedback and successfully navigate the review process. Bernhard Sabel (University of Magdeburg in Germany), editor-in-chief of Restorative Neurology and Neuroscience, spoke about the “soft factors” involved in writing. Sabel’s remarks focused on how writing fits into academic life and life overall. The panel was well-attended, and numerous students and early-career psychologists received answers to their questions from the panelists.

Student Research Award Addresses
Chair: DeLeon Gray
The 2009 Student Research Award Addresses featured three graduate researchers and one undergraduate; all were fine representations of the outstanding scholarly work conducted by APS student affiliates. Panelists included Erin Maloney (University of Waterloo) who presented her work in the area of math anxiety; Michael Russell (University of California, Irvine) who reported a link between ADHD in adolescence and high levels of psychopathology; Jamil Zaki (Columbia University) who presented a novel functional imaging paradigm to examine brain regions implicated in interpersonal understanding; and Teresa Madruga (California State University, Stanislaus) who examined person perception in the context of brand name clothing.

RiSE-UP (Research on Socially and Economically Underrepresented Populations) Award
Chair: Michele L. Oliver

The Student Research Award and RiSE-UP Award winners are
congratulated at the Convention’s Opening Ceremony.

This was a record-setting year for the RiSE-UP Research Award competition. The high quality of research shown from each submission made the selection task a challenging one. The following winners were chosen for their outstanding research on underrepresented groups: Kimberly Kahn, Gloria Loung, Oanh Meyer, and Shu-wen Wang. The audience enjoyed a broad range of topics, covering stereotype threat, experiences living with a spinal cord injury, ethnic identity, and cultural influences on daily support use.

The Naked Truth: Getting Into Graduate School: Strategies for Survival and Success
Chair: Molly Petersen
This year’s Getting into Graduate School panelists complemented each other nicely with a variety of research interests and varying stages within their programs. Panel members included Deah S. Quinlivan (Iowa State University), Michaela Bucchianeri (Notre Dame), Jessica Wong (University of Chicago), Kris Gunawan (University of Nevada, Las Vegas), Katie O’Neill (Iona College), and Harrison Kell (Rice University). The panelists began the discussion with one thing they wished someone would have told them when they were applying to graduate school. After each panelist shared, audience members approached the open mic. At the conclusion of the session, the gracious panelists continued to field questions in an overflow room for nearly one hour.

The Naked Truth: Deciphering Graduate School, Research, Coursework, Teaching, and Life
Chair: DeLeon Gray
This students-only event featured a group of highly successful post-baccalaureates who shared the knowledge, skills, and tricks that have come in handy for them in graduate school. Panelists included Tierra Stimson (University of California, Riverside), Sarah Holley (University of California, Berkeley), Ava Rose (Miami University of Ohio), Mandi White-Ajmani (Suffolk University), Mike Yough (Ohio State University), and David Frederick (University of California, Los Angeles). Among many other helpful suggestions, They advised students to prioritize writing, maintain a work-life balance, form as many relationships with colleagues as possible, and apply for grants and fellowships.

The Naked Truth: Life After the PhD
Chair: Lisa Hasel

The final panel in the Naked Truth series featured psychologists who have followed a variety of traditional and non-traditional career paths. The panelists were Jennifer Dysart (John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY), Alana Conner (Stanford Business School, Social Innovation Review), Zlatan Krizan (Iowa State University), Eric Lang (Defense Personnel Security Research Center), and Megan Oser (Stanford University School of Medicine). The panel shared the stories of how they decided to follow their chosen career and highlighted the costs and benefits of staying in academia after receiving their PhDs.

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