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Jayson L. Mystkowski
Featured Therapist

Watch the first in a series of explorations of VA/DoD career paths

Dealing with Panic Attacks

Meet ABCT's Featured Lab

Allowing Good to Be Good Enough, or Addressing Perfectionism

Coming Out of Hermithood

Ending Conversion Therapy

Happenings

The Culture and Race/Ethnicity (CARE) in Youth Mental Health Lab, located in the Department of Psychology at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), is directed by Anna Lau, Ph.D.

Notes for Lab Photo

Title/description: CARE Lab members try to escape from Forsyth Mansion and save Nancy Drew during a socially distanced escape room challenge!

Top row: Julia Cox, Andie (one of our canine lab members), Dana Saifan, Blanche Wright

2nd row: Casandra Gomez Alvarado, Stephanie Yu, Vivian Byeon

3rd row: Resham Gellatly, Anna Lau, Tamar Kodish

Bottom row: Belinda Chen, Jasper Estabillo

Trainee Lab Members

Postdoctoral Fellows

  • Jasper Estabillo, Ph.D.
  • Julia Revillion Cox, Ph.D.
Graduate Students
  • Resham Gellatly, M.A.
  • Blanche Wright, M.A.
  • Tamar Kodish, M.A.
  • Dana Saifan, M.A.
  • Stephanie H. Yu, M.A.
  • Vivian Byeon, M.A.
  • Belinda Chen, B.A.
Postbaccalaureate Research Coordinator
  • Casandra Gomez Alvarado, B.A.

We asked each of the CARE in Youth Mental Health Lab's ABCT members:

  1. What is your area of research interest?
  2. How has ABCT been helpful to you?
  3. If a student were thinking about joining ABCT, what activities would you recommend they get involved in?

Resham Gellatly, M.A.

  1. My research interests center around expanding access to quality mental health care for vulnerable youth and families through collaborating with local stakeholders to design and test interventions aimed at reducing barriers and increasing scalability. I am particularly interested in utilizing qualitative methods to understand how culture and context impact the adoption and sustainability of evidence-based practices implemented in under-resourced settings.
  2. I have appreciated the opportunities ABCT provides to meet researchers at different stages of training with a range of interests and areas of expertise. Attending the convention has helped me improve my presentation skills, and it is always a fun time to catch up with the ABCT community.
  3. I would recommend exploring the Special Interest Groups (SIG) and getting involved with one that aligns with your interests and values. The Dissemination and Implementation (DIS) SIG recently started doing informal online coffee breaks to create space for virtual networking, which is a great way to meet people and think through collaborations. Attending or presenting at the annual ABCT convention is another way to connect with others and get exposure to exciting new research ideas and presentation styles.

Tamar Kodish, M.A.

  1. I am interested in strategies to improve reach and quality of mental health services for racial/ethnic minority and immigrant family youth, particularly those at risk for depression and suicide, who are served in the public care sector.
  2. Attending the ABCT convention over the years has served as a great opportunity for me to grow my presentation skills. It has also facilitated new connections with peers and strengthened my relationships with existing collaborators. I have been fortunate to learn from the larger ABCT community.
  3. I suggest attending the ABCT convention, presenting a poster or paper, and getting involved with a Special Interest Group that aligns with your interests.

Stephanie H. Yu, M.A.

  1. I am passionate about mental health equity and policy-relevant research on reducing mental health disparities for marginalized racial and ethnic groups. My research focuses on the adaptation and implementation of evidence-based practices (EBPs) in public systems of care serving diverse youth (e.g., schools, community mental health settings), and the cultivation of community partnerships to foster EBP implementation and sustainment. I am also interested in examining how risk and protective factors for mental health can be leveraged to inform culturally responsive interventions for minoritized youth.
  2. I love attending and presenting at the ABCT convention every year to network, learn from others' exciting work, share the work I'm excited about, and see colleagues-turned-friends who I wouldn't normally see from all over the country.
  3. I would highly recommend joining a Student Interest Group (SIG) to find your professional home and network. Shoutout to the Dissemination and Implementation Science Student Interest Group (DIS SIG), Asian American Mental Health SIG, and the Oppression & Resilience SIG!

Dana Saifan, M.A.

  1. I am interested in the implications of holding multiple minority identities for mental health, particularly among individuals with marginalized ethnic and religious identities (e.g., Muslim American mental health). I am also interested in collective mental health among marginalized communities, understanding community mental health from a socioecological perspective.
  2. Attending the ABCT convention and has provided the opportunity to network with other researchers and improve my presentation skills in order to disseminate research.
  3. I suggest presenting at ABCT conventions and joining a SIG in order to get more exposure to research in line with your interests.

Anna Lau, Ph.D.

Anna Lau is a Clinical Psychologist and Professor of Psychology and Asian-American Studies at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). She received her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from UCLA in 2000. Dr. Lau's translational research on risk and protective factors for youth in immigrant families and her identification of racial disparities in youth mental health services have informed her efforts to study the implementation of evidence-based practices in community settings. Her research has been supported by the National Institute of Mental Health. Dr. Lau trains doctoral students in delivery of evidence-based psychotherapy for youth and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses related to Asian-American Mental Health and the Psychology of Diversity. Dr. Lau is dedicated to inclusive excellence in higher education and is the Vice Chair for Graduate Studies in Psychology. She has Chaired the Academic Senate Committee on Undergraduate Admissions and Relations with Schools, is a member of the Asian-American Studies Center Faculty Advisory Committee, and is the Associate Dean for Inclusive Excellence in the Division of Life Sciences.

The CARE in Youth Mental Health Lab addresses racial/ethnic disparities in youth mental health services, risk and protective factors for youth psychopathology in diverse communities, and the community implementation of evidence-based practices for ethnic minority youth and families.

How long have you been a member of ABCT?

About ten years.

How often and why do you attend the ABCT convention?

I attend most years, these days primarily to take part in the Dissemination and Implementation Science Student Interest Group (DIS SIG) programming with my collaborators and students. I also relish the chance to connect with friends from graduate school.

How do you stay current with developments in the field, both research and practice?

For me, this is part and parcel of designing new studies when writing proposals, writing up our own findings once we have our data, peer reviewing papers and grant applications, preparing for my own classroom teaching, and attending brown bags and conventions.

How has ABCT helped you/your lab professionally?

ABCT and the ABCT DIS SIG have created a supportive network of folks that has been instrumental in helping me form relationships with greats in the field! I especially love the opportunities for trainees to present. I have to shout out the DIS SIG for being so development-focused and always thinking of new ways to lift each other up, and to press for greater interaction between community practitioners and intervention and implementation researchers.

Does your lab have any traditions?

We try to have social events each quarter. In the past we have had potlucks at my home (I'm known for dumplings and quiche - though not together). Pre-pandemic, we spent time together at fun LA spots, but most recently we did a virtual escape room since we cannot be in the same physical place. The most important tradition in our lab is to support each other in good times and bad. Celebrating big and small wins and normalizing setbacks or challenges is so important in grad school!

What advice would you give prospective trainees?

Applicants to our lab should focus on building an experience set that showcases their passion and progress in mentored, independent research that relates in some way to equity in youth mental health care. Many applicants to our Clinical Science program are excellent students and many have shown themselves to be dedicated research assistants, but the applicants who stand out are those who have completed a thesis or taken initiative in developing an independent study or analysis and seeing it all the way through. Of course, some clinical training experience and strong leadership on equity, diversity, and inclusion efforts are also highly valued in our lab.

 

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