As a Gates Cambridge scholar I hope to make a difference in the lives of children and adolescents who have experienced early-life adversity. At the age of 16, I moved from a small town in Georgia to New York City. Living in New York opened my eyes to the diversity of human experience and made me realise that I could make a meaningful difference through education, commitment, and collaboration. Later, while studying at Columbia University, I became fascinated by the science of psychology. I began working with children and adolescents exposed to trauma, which sparked my passion for understanding the ways in which adversity in early life affects mental health outcomes. In my doctoral research at Cambridge, I aim to investigate the mechanisms by which adolescents learn from their environment, and how early life stress affects the development of these mechanisms. In addition, I am interested in how individual differences in these learning mechanisms relate to mental health across the lifespan. By better understanding how adolescents learn, we will be better able to develop interventions to improve the education and mental health of adolescents and children around the world.
University of California Los Angeles 2019 Social Science