Who We Are

The members of the Culture, Community, and Mental Health lab include both graduate and undergraduate students. All students are involved in both the ongoing lab research, as well as the development of their own substantive research programs.

Esteban V. Cardemil

Professor, Department of Psychology
ecardemil@clarku.edu Curriculum vitaeCardemil border
Dr. Cardemil received a B.A. from Swarthmore College in 1993 and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1994 and 2000, respectively. He was subsequently at Brown University, where he completed his predoctoral internship in 2000, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship. He is currently Associate Professor in the Frances L. Hiatt School of Psychology at Clark University, where he has been since 2002.

Current Doctoral Students

Tamara Nelson
Tamara Nelson received her B.S. in Psychology and Exercise Science from Rutgers University and her M.P.H. in Epidemiology from San Diego State University. Prior to attending Clark, Tamara worked as a Research Associate in the research and evaluation department at the Boston Public Health Commission. Tamara’s current research interests are in the area of understanding cultural influences on mental health disparities, particularly values such as strength and self-reliance.

Kristen Keefe
Kristen-KeefeKristen Keefe received her B.A. from Boston College in Psychology with a minor in Hispanic Studies. Prior to attending Clark, Kristen worked as Project Coordinator at the Center for Multicultural Mental Health Research at the Cambridge Health Alliance.  Currently, Kristen’s research interests include mental health disparities and minority mental health.  She is particularly interested in better understanding disparities affecting patients’ engagement in aftercare following inpatient psychiatric hospitalization.

Jessica L. O’Leary 
Jessica-picJessica O’Leary earned her BA in Child Development and Sociology from Tufts University. Following graduation, she taught middle school students in Los Angeles as a Teach For America corps member. During that time, she earned her MA in Elementary Education from Loyola Marymount University and developed an interest in examining the risk and resilience of children and adolescents.  Her Master’s work explored the role of guilt and shame in explaining the association between parental emotion socialization practices and youth outcomes.

Emily He
Emily He received her B.A. from UC Davis in Psychology with honors and her M.A. from Teachers College, Columbia University in Psychology with an emphasis on Research Methods and Quantitative Methods. Prior to coming to Clark, Emily worked in research labs aimed at understanding and reducing mental health care disparities for ethnic minorities and other marginalized populations. Emily is investigating help-seeking for psychosis risk and its associated stigma in Chinese and Taiwanese Americans. Emily hopes to develop effective prevention and intervention programs to improve outcomes for individuals with or at-risk for chronic and severe mental illness.

Néstor Noyola
Néstor Noyola received his B.S. in Psychology with honors from Brown University. Prior to his doctoral work at Clark, Néstor worked as Clinical Research Coordinator at the Disparities Research Unit at Massachusetts General Hospital. Overall, Néstor’s research interests include understanding the mental health of sexual, gender and racial minorities from an intersectional perspective, with a particular interest in risk for suicide and non-suicidal self-harm. Néstor is currently conducting a qualitative study to understand the stress that sexual minority Latinxs experience in different areas of their life, including heterosexism and racism.

Current Undergraduate Students


Recent Doctoral Students

– Monica Sanchez, Ph.D., 2016, currently at San Francisco VA
– Oswaldo Moreno, Ph.D., 2015,
currently Assistant Professor at VCU
– Rachel Zack Ishikawa, Ph.D., 2013
, currently at Cambridge Health Alliance
– Ingrid Sarmiento, Ph.D., 2012, currently at McLean Hospital
– Alisha Pollastri, Ph.D., 2010, currently at Mass General Hospital
Tatiana M. Davidson, Ph.D., 2010, currently Assistant Professor at MUSC
– Rahael Kurrien, Ph.D., 2008, currently at St. Luke’s Medical Center
– Ellen O’Donnell, Ph.D., 2008, currently at Mass General Hospital
– Saeromi Kim, Ph.D., 2007, currently at the UCLA Counseling Center

Recent Undergraduate Students

– Naysha Shahid, B.A., 2015, currently working at Massachusetts General Hospital
– Jennifer Tejeda, B.A., 2014
, currently at Y.O.U. Inc, in HR
– Matt Thompson, B.A., 2014, working at Brown University Medical School
– Camille Adeoye, B.A., 2013, enrolled in CDP MA program at Clark
– Maria Campos, B.A., 2012, completed MBA at Clark University, currently at Chevron in HR
– Natalia Jaramillo, B.A., 2010, currently working towards Ph.D. at UCSB
– Victor Figuereo, B.A., 2010, currently working towards Ph.D. at Northeastern University
– Robert Rosales, B.A.,. 2010, currently working towards Ph.D. at Boston College