Get to Know Us

Principal Investigator


Dr. Adam Grabell
Assistant Professor
Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences
University of Massachusetts, Amherst
135 Hicks Way, Tobin 123
Amherst, MA 01003-9271

Dr. Adam Grabell’s research focuses on emotion regulation and its relation to cross-diagnostic symptoms of psychopathology in early childhood. Dr. Grabell is particularly interested in the fine details of how the emerging emotion regulation system works and which parts of this system aren’t functioning well in young children on the cusp of persistent mood and behavior problems.

Graduate Students

Katie Gonzalez

Katie is a first-year graduate student in the Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program. She graduated from California State University, Northridge in 2018 with a B.A. in Psychology, where she studied neuropsychology and patterns of cognitive decline in individuals with Alzheimer’s Disease and Mild Cognitive Impairment. She later worked at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) where she worked in the ADHD and Development Lab and studied executive functioning and risk-taking behaviors in individuals with ADHD. Her research interests lie in early childhood development and different underlying factors that effect mental and physical health outcomes across development. In her free time, she enjoys listening to music, watching horror movies, reading books, and going on hikes.

Sarah McCormick

Sarah is a fourth-year graduate student in the Developmental Science PhD program at UMass Amherst. She graduated from UMass Amherst in 2013 with a B.S. in Psychology and Neuroscience, and spent the following three years working on a project examining the neural bases of emotion processing in infancy and early childhood at Boston Children’s Hospital.
Sarah is interested in how family systems and context promote or inhibit early social-cognitive development. 
Her master’s thesis focused on how household chaos influences associations between neural physiology and internalizing symptoms in early childhood.

Lab Manager

Adrelys Mateo Santana

Adrelys graduated from the University of Massachusetts – Amherst in 2020 with a B.S. in Psychology, a certificate in Developmental Disabilities & Human Services (DDHS), and a secondary major in Spanish. She stayed at UMass Amherst to work as the Lab Coordinator for the SEED Lab and expand her knowledge on young children’s emotion regulation across various units of analysis. Adrelys hopes to attend graduate school and pursue a Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology. Outside of research, Adrelys loves translation, photography, and interior design.

Research Assistants

Katherine Edell

Katherine Edell is a third-year student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst in the Commonwealth Honors College. She is currently completing a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Sociology with certificates in social work and international studies. She is very interested in clinical psychology and plans on pursuing graduate school after graduation where she will be able to obtain a Ph.D in clinical psychology. With that degree, she hopes to work in the field of therapy. Outside of the lab she enjoys writing, baking, and hiking.

Niveditha Gopalakrishnan

Niveditha is a junior, double major in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and a Psychology major on the Neuroscience track, and part of the Commonwealth Honors College. She plans to pursue a PhD in drug design and development, looking at how to treat mental disorders within children so as to not hinder them in the future. In her free time, she loves to binge Netflix shows, and spend time with her friends.

Philip Dorfman

Philip is a third-year student in the Commonwealth Honors College, pursuing a Bachelors of Science in Psychology. He plans to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology and is particularly interested in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and other therapeutic interventions for treating psychological disorders. His research interests include psychopathology in children and adults, as well as the effectiveness of various treatment interventions. Outside of the lab Philip plays for the Ultimate Frisbee team, makes wheel-thrown pottery, and plays the cello.

Cody Lenart

Cody is a Senior at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, currently pursuing a degree in Biochemistry and Molecular biology. He hopes to continue his education and go into medical school in order to become a physician. Cody is an active student on campus who is a resident assistant, peer advisor, cadet in ROTC, and a former varsity athlete at the university. Outside the university, Cody loves to snowboard, scuba dive and skydive along with hanging with friends and trying new restaurants.

Caitlyn Calicchia

Caitlyn is a third-year student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst in the Commonwealth Honors College. She is currently majoring in psychology on the neuroscience track and minoring in biology. Caitlyn hopes to attend medical school and become a pediatric physician concentrating in the field of neuroscience. Outside of lab, Caitlyn loves to play piano, bake sweets with her mom, and play outside with her two dogs.

Makayla Dones

Makayla is a fourth-year student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Neuroscience Psychology within the Commonwealth Honors College. She is on the pre-med track and plans to go to medical school or a physician assistant program. She would like to work in pediatric neurology because she loves working with kids. In her free time, she volunteers at a homeless shelter for children and works at Baystate Medical Center. Her favorite things to do are paint and draw, listen to music, and go on adventures!

Shriya Agrawal

Shriya is a second-year student in the Commonwealth Honors College, double majoring in Biology and Studio Art. She is interested in Developmental and Clinical Psychology, and possibly integrating her passion for art and psychology through art therapy. Her research interests include the cognitive and physiological basis of emotion regulation in children and adults with mood disorders, and the early treatment of such disorders. In her free time, she likes to read, write, draw, and listen to music.

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