Principle Investigator


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Scott A. Langenecker, PhD
Clinical Neuropsychologist
Professor, Psychiatry

s.langenecker@hsc.utah.edu

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Dr. Langenecker's research and clinical work focuses on the lifespan approach to mood and anxiety disorders, with particular focus on life transitions (e.g., adolescence to adulthood). He is developing and adapting biological and cognitive tools to understand ways to identify and treat individuals with a past history of mood disorders to reduce recurrence, decrease episode length and severity, and to improve functioning and quality of life.


Post-Docs


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Melinda Westlund Schreiner, PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow, Psychiatry
mindy.westlund.schreiner@utah.edu

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Mindy's research is in the area of affective disorders with a specific focus on non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) and suicide in adolescents and young adults. She is interested in developing a more nuanced understanding of the neurobiology associated with these behaviors, investigating the neural mechanisms of change associated with treatment, and using this knowledge to optimize treatment outcomes. Mindy joined the MEND2 lab as a Postdoctoral Research Associate in Fall 2019.


Graduate Students


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Katie L. Bessette, MA
Clinical Psychology Doctoral Student, University of Illinois at Chicago
Research Associate, Psychiatry

katie.bessette@hsc.utah.edu

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Katie's research and clinical work focuses on a developmental cognitive neuroscience approach to mood and common co-occurring disorders. She is a cognitive-behavioral therapist in the lab’s current clinical trial with adolescents. Katie is also completing her dissertation on cognitive, biological, and environmental risk factors for development of depression in adolescents, and hopes to use this work to inform prevention and intervention measures for high-risk youth. She is currently a graduate student at University of Illinois at Chicago. She is completing her dissertation work and practica experiences at the University of Utah and Salt Lake City area.


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Rebecca Easter, MA
Clinical Psychology Graduate Student, University of Illinois at Chicago
Research Assistant, Psychiatry
reaste4@uic.edu

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Becca's research examines the impact of sociocultural factors on mood disorders, with a focus on the effect of sociocultural group identity on social cognition in bipolar disorder and major depression. She is also interested in the cross-cultural validity of diagnostic criteria and psychometric measures. Becca is currently a graduate student at the University of Illinois at Chicago.


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Leah R. D. Thomas, BS
Clinical Psychology Graduate Student, University of Utah

leah.thomas@psych.utah.edu


Leah's research interests focus on the underlying risk and protective mechanisms in the development of mood disorders. She joined the University of Utah's Clinical Psychology program and MEND2 Lab as a doctoral student in Fall 2019.


Research Assistants


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Alina Dillahunt, BS
Research Assistant, Psychiatry

u6026311@utah.edu


Alina is a graduate from the University of Madison who is currently applying to Clinical Psychology doctoral programs while working as a Research Associate in the MEND2 Lab, where she is involved in running and maintaining all lab studies. Her main interests are the etiology of mood disorders, risk factors of suicidal behaviors, and learning neuroscience techniques.


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Summer Frandsen
Research Assistant, Psychiatry

u6028650@utah.edu


Summer is currently a Research Associate in the MEND2 Lab where she is involved in running and maintaining all lab studies, as well as developing code for projects. She is interested in studying the impact on physiology and the brain caused by trauma, mental illness, chronic pain/illness, positive-psych based methods, and treatments. She is also interested in applying/learning state of the art techniques from statistics, coding, and brain research.


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Kade Lewis
Undergraduate Student, University of Utah
Part-Time Research Assistant, Psychiatry

u0767584@utah.edu


Kade is a part time research associate and student majoring in Chemistry/Psychology. His responsibilities include data collection, entry, management and analysis, as well as creating and editing IRB materials.


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Stephanie S. Pocius, BS
Research Associate, Psychiatry

Stephanie.pocius@hsc.utah.edu


Stephanie is a Research Associate for the MEND2 Lab, having recently graduated with a bachelor's in Neuroscience at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is involved in running and maintaining all lab studies. She is interested in maternal/child epidemiology and social health policy. She hopes to create better policies, programs, and access to quality and affordable healthcare for women and children through the use of research and scientific information.


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Briana Schubert
Research Assistant, Psychiatry

u1317185@utah.edu


Briana is a Research Associate in the MEND2 Lab, who recently graduated from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville with a bachelor’s in Psychology and minor in Neuroscience. She is involved in running and maintaining all lab studies. She is interested in learning about the transmission and development of psychopathology in adolescents, as well as investigating the brain mechanisms involved. She is optimistic to learn about interventions and neuroscience techniques while working in the lab.


Volunteers


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Alayna Arnholt
Undergraduate Student, University of Utah
Volunteer, Psychiatry

u1189519@utah.edu


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Tommy K. Kuehn, BS
Technician & Volunteer, Psychiatry

tommy.kuehn@utah.edu


Tommy has worked with adolescents for several years and hopes to pursue a medical degree, specializing in psychiatry and internal medicine. He is interested in enhancing therapeutic resources and improving mental health care access. Tommy helps manage and organize data for the lab's clinical trial.


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