BY: Melissa Munn-Chernoff, PhD
DATE: 15 December 2017
In spirit of the holiday season, I wanted to take a moment to thank all of our undergraduate and postgraduate students who volunteer their time and energy to ensure that our research studies are successful. Since CEED was founded in 2003, we have had over 80 volunteers, many of whom have gone on to graduate or medical school. Currently, we have 7 volunteers, and I’d like to tell you a little bit about them.
Emma is a senior at UNC and has been with us since January 2017. She is a Psychology major and plans to take a year off school before applying to graduate school to obtain a Master’s degree in Social Work. Currently, Emma works on two projects – BEGIN (Binge Eating Genetics INitiative) and Carolina CARES (College Assessment of Research and Education in Science), where she is primarily responsible for data management and analysis. Emma also works closely with Dr. Laura Thornton on projects related to the large, epidemiological studies at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden. In addition to volunteering at CEED, Emma works on another research study at the Center for Developmental Sciences examining infant sleep and the mother-baby bond. As if that is not enough, she is even working on her own independent project with the Carolina CARES data!
Andy has also been with us since January 2017. He is a sophomore at UNC, double majoring in Biology and Psychology. Andy assists with BEGIN, where he packages and checks research materials, and with Dr. Stephanie Thomas, helping with bench lab work related to microbiome research. After graduation, Andy plans to attend medical school to become an internal medicine physician.
Ruchi joined CEED in May 2017. She is currently a junior at UNC, majoring in Psychology and Neuroscience. Ruchi works on UCAN (Uniting Couples in the treatment of Anorexia Nervosa) and Carolina CARES, assisting with data entry and survey management in Qualtrics. She also works with Dr. Jessica Baker on BAN (Biomarkers of Anorexia Nervosa) and ecological momentary assessment, or EMA, studies. Upon graduation, she will apply to medical school.
Emily is a senior at North Carolina State University, majoring in Psychology. Since beginning with us in May 2017, she has assisted with UCAN and Carolina CARES. She also works closely with Dr. Jessica Baker on the BAN study and an ecological momentary assessment study. Her primary responsibilities include data entry, survey management in Qualtrics, and conducting literature searches. After graduation, Emily plans to apply to graduate school and become a clinical psychologist.
Kate Scheyer El-Sharkawy
Kate comes to us from Dr. Anna Bardone-Cone’s eating disorders lab in UNC’s Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, where she still works. After completing an undergraduate degree in art history, Kate worked in New York City in the fashion industry. However, she realized that she wanted to pursue additional education and research experiences in psychology, with a specific interest in eating disorders. Kate currently works on BEGIN, where her responsibilities include helping to revise and implement standardized participant contact protocol, and assists Dr. Cynthia Bulik on tasks related to research on the treatment of eating disorders. Kate is applying to graduate school, where she plans to further develop her research skills and build expertise as a clinical psychologist.
Rachel graduated from UNC in May 2017 with a B.A. in Psychology and has been working at CEED since September 2017. Currently, she works on various projects, including BEGIN, where she assists with data management, participant tracking and communication, and mailing out study kits, as well as Carolina CARES, where her primary role is data management and analysis. She also assists Dr. Melissa Munn-Chernoff on a grant examining genetic and environmental risk for eating disorders and substance use. In addition to volunteering at CEED, Rachel works at Veritas Collaborative. She is currently applying to graduate school to pursue a PhD in clinical psychology, where she plans to study eating disorders among racial and ethnic minorities.
As a junior at UNC, Tatiana originally joined us as a Gil Intern through the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience in September 2017. We are pleased that she will be continuing as a volunteer next semester! Tatiana has been involved with Carolina CARES, assisting with various data management projects, and conducting her own research project regarding the differences in ED symptomatology between ADHD-medication users and non-users. In addition, she will be assisting with BEGIN and BAN. Prior to graduation, Tatiana plans to take a gap year to gain clinical and research experience regarding the neurobiological causes of eating disorders and psychiatric comorbidities, and the different modalities to prevention and treatment. In the long-term, Tatiana plans to pursue a Ph.D. in clinical psychology, with the hopes of becoming a neuropsychologist and researcher at a university.
Thank you again for your service – we could not do what we do without you!