Matthew Jackson

Matt Jackson



Matthew Jackson is a postdoctoral researcher at SDSU. He received his PhD. in Social Psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles and has worked in the UCLA Diversity Research Office and as a fellow in the Center for Policing Equity.  His research explores the performance of social identities; particularly the performances of masculinity and racial identity within educational contexts and professional organizations.  His current work seeks to understand the role of cultural and career purpose orientations in underrepresented minority science student success, and is supported by the National Science Foundation.  His research has previously been supported by the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, the Eugene V. Cota-Robles Fellowship program, and the UCLA DIGSSS Fellows Program.


Mia Steinberg is a postdoc at CSULB.  Supported by a grant from the Chancellor’s office, she is currently developing a social psychological intervention aimed at increasing student persistence and retention, particularly among underrepresented minority group members.  She also works as a program evaluator for BUILD, an NIH-funded program aimed at increasing diversity in biomedical careers.   She received her Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Miami University of Ohio and her research interests include motivation, gender roles, stereotyping, and psychological interventions.  In her former life, she worked as a web developer in the technology industry.

Mia Steinberg


Jeanette Zambrano


 Lab Manager SDSU


Jeanette graduated from California State University, Long Beach with a B.A. in Psychology. Her interests are in motivational processes and the social and cultural factors that influence belonging, interest, and success in educational contexts. Though she has many interests, she is currently focusing on examining 1) how students from Latino/Hispanic backgrounds think about (in)compatibility between their cultural and academic identities, 2) how course assignments and materials influence student motivations and interest in foundational science courses, and 3) how other people can shape one’s interests and goals, particularly through conversations, or anticipated conversations.

When she is not working in the lab, she likes to watch movies, try new recipes, and read. Her favorite book is The Count of Monte Cristo.

Ron comes from a diverse business background and he is particularly interested in the value, acquisition, and plasticity of identity. He is also interested in how motivational differences between people sometimes lead to conflict versus cooperation.
Ron’s hobbies include martial arts and travel. He also enjoys skiing and snowboarding at Mammoth Mountain.”

Ron Flores


Garam Lee


Garam graduated from California State University, Long Beach with a B.A. in Psychology. She is curious as to what drives or motivate people to initiate and maintain interest until they develop specific and achievable goals, and what influences the psychological processes until people actually achieve their goals. Specifically, she is interested in the influence of people’s mindset and identity on social interactions, and how they further affect motivational experiences such as interest and belonging.

In her free time, she loves to draw and sew. She also enjoys singing operas.


Christina graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara in 2013 with a B.A. in Psychology. She just finished her second year of the Master of Arts, Psychological Research Program at CSULB.  Her research interests include the influence of social identity in education and the development of interest. Specifically she is currently interested in how communication with others about interests can impact motivational outcomes.

In her spare time, Christina enjoys reading and traveling as much as she can.


Christina Curti


Madison Haley



Madison is very interested in social psychology and hopes to carry on her experience into the field of counseling with young children. Madison is currently a preschool assistant teacher and hopes to continue a career in education.


During Madison’s free time, she loves to go outside and adventure. Whether it is going to the beach, going on a hike, or riding bikes around Mission Beach, she is always taking advantage of living in beautiful San Diego.





Dylan is interested in social and I-O psychology. After graduating with a degree in Psychology Emphasis: I-O Psychology, with minor in Business Management, Dylan plans to pursue a Master’s degree in I-O Psychology.


His personal interests include going to concerts with his friends, trying new food, and playing soccer.


Dylan Perez Neider


Angela Tamakloe



Angela is interested in developmental psychology and psycholinguistics and would love to try and find a job one day where she can incorporate both. She is currently working on her BA, with only two semesters left, and is hoping to continue on towards her M.S soon thereafter.


In her free time she loves spending time with family and friends, as well as cooking and watching movies. Traveling has also become somewhat of a personal interest her, and whenever she gets the chance, she loves to visit new places.



Daniel Berkowitz is interested in the intersection of Social and Forensic Psychology. He hopes to find out how identity and motivation lead people into either side of the justice system, and what social factors contribute to both of these sides, in hopes of bettering the criminal justice system.


Daniel loves reading high fantasy, especially Brandon Sanderson, participating in community service, and listening to folk music.



Daniel Berkowitz


Christina Lee


Christina is interested in I-O Psychology and hopes to further her education by going to Graduate School. In the future, she wants to be able to assist organizations and corporations in improving their working environment, thereby making people’s work experience more enjoyable as well as increasing their efficiency. She is currently working on her B.A.


Christina enjoys meeting new people, listening to music, going on road trips, watching anime, reading manga, playing League of Legends, playing board games, and hanging out with friends.



Leyna is interested in studying how people’s individual characteristics and personalities affect their ability to work well with others in the workplace. She hopes to explore the possibility of attending graduate school and one day receive a Master’s in Industrial and Organizational Psychology.


During her free time, she enjoys lounging with her dogs and watching women’s soccer.




Leyna Arroyo


Elizabeth Brekke



Liz is interested in how social influence can affect personality, perception, and motivation. She is specifically interested in how media representation can affect identity and goal-orientation. Liz is currently completing her undergraduate education at SDSU, but also plans to pursue a Masters Degree in Psychology after graduation.


In her free time, Liz likes to sing, play the ukulele, and write music.



Ariana is an undergraduate student at SDSU majoring in psychology and minoring in Honors interdisciplinary studies. She is interested in social psychology as well as industrial and organizational psychology. She hopes to make an impact in worker’s lives through the study of one’s identity and motivation. Ariana intends to further her education and achieve her goals by going to graduate school and attaining an M.A or Ph.D in I-O psychology after graduating from SDSU.


In her free time, she enjoys hiking, reading, watching movies, and exploring coffee shops.


Ariana Hernandez

Ariana H.

Andrew Stieber



Andrew is interested in how intersections of social identity affect achievement and success, both academically as well as in other endeavors. He is particularly interested in how diverse sexualities and gender identities play a role in one’s self perception and performance.


In his free time, Andrew enjoys collecting vinyl records and reading.





Zena is in her final year of undergraduate studies where she will earn a B.A. in Psychology. She is interested in the treatment of mental illnesses, especially anxiety and depression. She plans to attend graduate school for Clinical Psychology, earn a Ph.D., and eventually work as a therapist.


When she’s not in school, she’s working as an AVID tutor at a middle school. In her spare time, Zena enjoys hiking, reading, and spending quality time with her cat.



Zena Donovan


Marissa Johnson



Marissa is a fourth year Psychology major from Pasadena, CA. She has aspirations to become an industrial/organizational psychologist and has her eyes on law school. She hopes to impact students on and off campus to be inspired to become their best selves personally and academically. This program has really helped her see the value of education, especially in underrepresented communities. She is also involved in other organizations including ASU (Afrikan Student Union).


When she is not in school, she serves currently as San Diego State University’s AVID liaison and President.



Ashley is interested in understanding the impact of cultural and social influences on individuals’ behaviors and decisions. She is currently a senior majoring in psychology with a minor in statistics. Her future plans include pursuing a MFT program certification and working with families as a unit.


She is an outdoor person. During her free time, she loves hiking, going on road trips or visiting a new place. She also appreciates having a laid back afternoon in her bedroom, reading books and playing guitar.


Ashley Khor


Frederick Rice

Frederick Rice


Frederick received his B.A. in Psychology from the University of California, Davis in 2014. He is currently pursuing his M.S. in Counseling with an emphasis in Marriage and Family Therapy. Frederick‘s interests include gender identity in academia and sexual assault on college campuses.


In his free time, he enjoys playing racquetball, reading, and playing the piano.



Krystal is interested in various aspects of motivation, identity, and mentoring. She is interested in developing a formal mentoring model that can be implemented in academic programs. She is currently a BUILD scholar and undergraduate student at CSULB. She plans to further her education in a doctoral program (somewhere outside of California).
Her hobbies include listening to music, spending time with friends and family, and trying new food!

Krystal Lira


Wen Li Liew

Wen Li


Wen Li is interested in motivational and developmental psychology. She is curious how social factors, the environment, and culture play a role in one’s performance, and how it influences and sustains one’s motivation towards their life’s goal.


She loves adventure. During her free time, she loves to explore around, go on hikes, and enjoy the beach.



Tanya is interested in study how people’s own perceptions of themselves and their capabilities are affected by environmental factors. In addition, she hopes to learn more about how gender stereotypes play a role in shaping beliefs and motivations.


In her free time, Tanya enjoys taking photos, especially of places and food.


Tanya Chellani


Many research assistants in the lab have been  highly successful during their time at CSULB and have continued to be successful in new positions. We highlight a few of these folks, to provide examples of the range of accomplishments and opportunities that students from the lab have pursued.  To learn about current research assistants, please follow the link on the left.

Isidro Landa

Graduate Assistant from 2014-2016

Accomplishments include: Sally Cassanova Pre-Doctoral Scholar, co-author on published paper, 1st place proposed project at Psych Day Research Fair

Currently: Doctoral student in the Social/Personality Psychology program at Washington University in St. Louis

Gregg Muragishi

Graduate Assistant from 2012-2014

Accomplishments include: multiple research presentations, co-author on one published paper.

Currently: enrolled in Social Psychology Ph.D. program at Stanford University

Ramon Flores

Graduate Assistant from 2013-2014

Accomplishments include: Graduate McNair Fellowship, Student Summer Research Award, Sally Cassanova Pre-Doctoral Scholar, multiple research presentations, co-author on published paper

Currently: enrolled in Social Work Ph.D. at the University of Texas at Austin

Erendira Aldaňa

Undergrad RA  from 2009-2011

Accomplishments include: NIH COR Scholar, California Pre-Doctoral Scholar, multiple research presentations

Currently: enrolled in Community Psychology Ph.D. program at the University of Hawaii at Manoa

Jessica Arizaga

Undergrad RA from 2009-2010

Accomplishments include: NIH COR Scholar, California Pre-Doctoral Scholar, SPSP Travel Award Recipient; multiple research presentations, co-author on a published paper

Currently: enrolled in Child Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program at DePaul University

Cassie Comley

Undergrad RA from 2009-2011

Accomplishments include: McNair Scholar, multiple research presentations

Currently: enrolled in Sociology Ph.D. program at the University of Oregon

J. Katherine Lee

Graduate Assistant from 2009-2012

Accomplishments include: multiple research presentations, co-author on one published paper from the lab, co-author on a published paper

Currently: enrolled in Social Psychology Ph.D. program at Portland State University

Jessica Lopez

Undergrad RA in 2011

Currently: completed a Post-Bac program at the National Institute of Health and currently enrolled in the MPH program at Drexel University

J’Aimee Mission

Undergrad RA from 2009-2011

Accomplishments include: Tomy Jung Memorial Award; research presentation

Currently: enrolled in Industrial/Organizational  Psychology Ph.D. program at Seattle Pacific University

Christina Siu

Undergrad RA from 2000-2012

Accomplishments include: NIH COR Scholar, President of Psi Chi

Currently: enrolled in the Human Factors Ph.D. program at Wichita State University

Gretchen Soncuya

Undergrad RA from 2009-2010

Accomplishments include: research presentation, co-author on a published paper, President of Psi Chi

Currently: working in medical field and applying to medical schools

Lisa Zazworsky

Graduate Assistant from 2010-2013

Accomplishments include: multiple research presentations, co-author on a manuscript currently under review

Currently: Outcomes & Evaluation Manager for the Veterans Village of San Diego

Jason Ziccardi

Undergrad RA from 2009-2010

Accomplishments include: research presentation, President of Psi Chi

Currently: enrolled in the Human Factors MA program at CSULB