CEED Welcomes Psychology Interns!

BY: Jessica Baker, PhD

DATE: November 30, 2015

Earlier this semester, clinical psychology PhD-candidates started their yearlong clinical internship year and we’d like to take this opportunity to welcome the interns who will be working with CEED this year!


Emily White

Emily is a doctoral student in clinical psychology at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and she is working with CEED full-time during her internship year as part of CEED’s clinical psychology internship program. She earned her M.A. in clinical psychology from UNLV, and her B.A. in psychology from Washington University in St Louis. Her training includes a strong background in CBT and DBT. She completed a training in comprehensive DBT led by Dr. Alan Fruzetti in 2014. She has several years experience working with individuals with eating disorders, including working as a project coordinator for the NIMH funded RIAN trial for adolescents with AN, and providing individual and group therapy in an outpatient eating disorders clinic. She also has experience working with bariatric surgery candidates, both pre- and post-operatively. Along with clinical work, Emily has been involved in ongoing research, mainly focused on the correlates and predictors of body image and disordered eating behaviors, particularly on the constructs of body checking and avoidance. Ultimately, she hopes to work with individuals with eating/weight related problems in a hospital or medical setting.


Alexa Bonacquisti

Alexa Bonacquisti, M.S. is a Clinical Psychology Intern in the Women’s Mental Health Track in the Department of Psychiatry at UNC Chapel Hill. She is currently completing her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology, with a concentration in Health Psychology, at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA. Her clinical and research interests are broadly in the area of behavioral medicine and women’s reproductive and sexual health. Alexa is currently seeing patients at CEED on an inpatient and outpatient basis. Following her graduation in August 2016, Alexa plans to pursue a clinical research position in a hospital or academic medical center.


Katy Higgins

Katy is a doctoral student in the UNC Clinical Psychology program and is working with CEED through the Women’s Mental Health Track in the Department of Psychiatry at UNC Chapel Hill.

She graduated with Honors from the University of Virginia in 2008 with a BA in Psychology and received her MA in Psychology in 2012 at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Katy’s research focuses on racial/ethnic minority members’ experience of eating disorders, with a focus on Latinas. Katy defended her dissertation in April 2015. It centered on Latina women and their experience of treatment and recovery from an eating disorder; she was supported in this work by a National Institute of Mental Health Diversity Supplement. You can read more about her study here: http://latinaeatingdisordersproject.web.unc.edu/welcome-to-the-latina-eating-disorders-project-webpage/.

Katy has specialized experience and interest in treating eating disorders and anxiety disorders. As a graduate practicum student, she conducted individual and group therapy with males and females with anorexia nervosa and bulimia nervosa in inpatient, partial hospitalization, and outpatient settings through CEED. She also has advanced knowledge of cognitive behavioral therapy and exposure and response prevention through her work in the UNC Anxiety and Stress Disorders Clinic, where she treated obsessive-compulsive disorder, social anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, trichotillomania, dermatillomania, generalized anxiety disorder, specific phobias, and panic disorder. Katy is excited to be a Clinical Psychology predoctoral intern in the Women’s Mental Health track at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, where she has the opportunity to continue conducting therapy and research with CEED.

After internship, Katy hopes to work in an academic medical center, where she will be able to work with patients who have eating and anxiety disorders.