Meet our team

Lab Director

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Brooke Ingersoll, PhD, BCBA-D, is the director of the MSU Autism Lab. Dr. Ingersoll’s research focuses on the development, evaluation, and dissemination of social communication interventions for individuals with autism. She also conducts research on the impact of ASD on the family and the broader autism phenotype. A major emphasis of her current work is on the development of community-focused, parent-mediated interventions for young children with ASD.

Post-Docs

Ellie Harrington, PhD, is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow on the RISE study. She received her PhD in School Psychology from the University of Oregon, and completed her predoctoral internship at the May Institute. Her clinical and research interests are centered around early childhood, and early intervention for children at risk for behavioral, mental health, and educational challenges at school entry. Clinically, her work has focused on evidence-based interventions for children with emotional and behavioral disorders, Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS), and parent training. Her research has focused on parent-child factors and early environmental contexts as they relate to self-regulation in the service of academic and socioemotional components of school readiness.

Graduate Students

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Kyle Frost, M.A. is doctoral candidate in MSU’s clinical psychology program and an NICHD National Research Service Award Fellow. Her primary research interest is understanding how early interventions work; in particular, she is interested in the active ingredients and mechanisms of change underlying parent-implemented interventions. When not in the lab, she can be found walking her dog, playing board games with friends, and kayaking.

Diondra Straiton, M.A., is a doctoral student in MSU’s clinical psychology program. She is interested in the implementation of evidence-based practices for ASD in community settings. Much of her recent work has focused on providers’ use of parent training interventions for youth with ASD within the Medicaid system. In her free time, Diondra enjoys reading, gardening, and spending time with her cat.

View Diondra’s CV

Anamiguel Pomales Ramos, B.S., is a doctoral student at Michigan State University’s Clinical Science program. She is interested in the development and evaluation of intervention tools, as well as facilitating access to evidence-based interventions for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. In her free time, Ana enjoys cooking new recipes and watching movies. 

Hannah Tokish, B.A., is a doctoral candidate in MSU’s Clinical Science program. Prior to joining the MSU Autism Lab, she completed her BA in Psychology at Cornell University and spent two years as a Donald J. Cohen Fellow in Developmental Social Neuroscience at the Marcus Autism Center. Hannah is interested in the design and implementation of accessible early interventions for children with ASD as well as the impact of caregiver coaching techniques on child development, parental well-being, and provider self-efficacy. When she’s not in the lab, Hannah loves to hike, take fun dance classes, and play the ukulele. 

Lab Staff

Julia Nauman, B.S., is the current Lab Manager of MSU’s Autism Lab. She received her B.S. from Tulane University in Neuroscience and Psychology with a minor in Philosophy. As an undergraduate, Julia worked and completed an honors thesis in the Learning and Brain Development Lab. She is interested in clinical psychology research, with a focus on neurodevelopmental disorders, and especially attentional and social impairment and repetitive behaviors present in autism and ADHD. In her free time, she enjoys traveling and volunteering. She intends to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology.

Sanchia Fernandes, BA, is a Research Assistant at MSU’s Autism Lab. She received her B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Religious Studies from the University of Virginia. As an undergraduate, Sanchia worked as a Research Assistant at the Early Development Lab and at the STAR Initiative at UVA. At STAR, she contributed to autism research in clinical, community, and school settings. Sanchia’s research interests include communication impairments and interventions for children with ASD and comorbid mental illnesses in people with ASD. She intends to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology in the future. 

Mya Howard, B.S., is a Research Assistant at MSU’s Autism Lab. She received her B.S. in Psychology with minors in Neuroscience and Spanish from Ohio State University. During her undergraduate career, Mya worked as a research assistant in the Attitudes and Social Cognition Lab and later the Mood and Personality Studies Lab. She also worked in a licensed psychologist’s office where she helped with autism evaluations. Her research interests include repetitive behavior and eye contact in children with autism spectrum disorder as well as increasing accessibility to early interventions. She enjoys playing card games with friends and watching TV shows in her free time. In the future, she hopes to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology.  

Anthuanet Espinel, B.S., is a Research Assistant at MSU’s Autism Lab. She received her B.S. from the University of Texas at Dallas in Psychology and Child Learning and Development with a minor in Spanish. As an undergraduate, Anthuanet worked and completed an honors thesis in the Think Lab. Her research interests include parent-child relationships and early interventions for children with autism. She enjoys traveling and being with friends in her free time. In the future, she hopes to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology.

Undergraduate Research Assistants

  • Alina Ahmad is a kinesiology major in the college of Education who enjoys working out, cooking, and exploring.
  • Alyssa Bonikowski is a psychology major in the College of Social Science who enjoys reading, listening to music, and her cat.
  • Annabelle Cunningham is a psychology major in the College of Social Science who enjoys spending time with family and friends, reading, and boating. 
  • Ashley Hrdlicka is a psychology major in the College of Social Science who enjoys traveling, art, and spending quality time with friends and family.
  • Atea Nelson is a psychology major in the College of Social Science who enjoys singing, spending time with friends and family, and taking pictures.
  • Claire Bongiorno is a psychology major in the College of Social Science. She enjoys spending time with her friends and family, swimming, and being outside.
  • Emily Assemany is a psychology major in the College of Social Science who enjoys reading, playing with my cat, and spending time with my friends and family.
  • George Boulos is a human biology and neuroscience major in Lyman Briggs college who enjoys gardening, spending time outside, and practicing karate.
  • Hashim Ali is a human biology major with minor in philosophy in the College of Natural Science who enjoys spending time with family, hanging out with friends, playing sports, and traveling. 
  • Helena Corda is a psychology major in the College of Social Science who enjoys doing puzzles and drinking coffee.
  • Jay Eoff is a psychology and neuroscience major in the College of Social Science, who enjoys Tetris, teaching, and working at Sparty’s.
  • Jessie Greatorex is a psychology major in the college of social science who enjoys playing guitar and binge-watching Netflix.
  • Jordyn Flemming is a neuroscience major in the College of Natural Science who enjoys kayaking, cooking, and spending time with friends and family.
  • Jozzy Rivera is a psychology major in the College of Social Science who enjoys hiking, weight training, and cooking.
  • Katie Bullock is a neuroscience major in Lyman Briggs College who enjoys listening to music and cooking.
  • Naomi Alvarado is a psychology major at the University of Michigan Dearborn and enjoys painting, reading, and hanging out with friends. 
  • Nicole (Grace) Kim is a marketing major in Broad College of Business who enjoys the mountains, board games, and quality time with loved ones.
  • Olivia Bowman is a psychology major in the College of Social Science who enjoys reading, musical theatre, and watching movies.
  • Sravani Sunkara is a human biology major in Lymans Briggs College who enjoys listening to music, playing board games with family and friends, and knitting.
  • Taylor Groothuis is a psychology major in the College of Social Science who enjoys thrift shopping, acting, and playing outside with her dog.

Lab Alumni

  • Katherine Walton, PhD., Assistant Professor, Ohio State University
  • Allison Wainer, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Rush Medical College
  • Natalie Berger, Ph.D., Assistant Professor & Pediatric Neuropsychologist, Rush University Medical Center
  • Katherine Pickard, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Marcus Autism Center, Emory University
  • KC Berry, Ph.D., ABA Behavior Therapies and Testing
  • Kate Shannon, Ph.D., Behavioral Resources and Institute for Neuropsychological Services (BRAINS), Grand Rapids
  • Nikki Bonter, MSW, Social Worker, Great Lakes Psychology Group
  • Kate Bailey, M.A., Doctoral student at Vanderbilt University
  • Kaylin Russell, B.A., Doctoral student at University of California-Santa Barbara
  • Karís Casagrande, Ph.D., Post Doc at the University of Washington.  

Looking to join us?
See information for prospective graduate students and
prospective undergraduate RAs!

A large group photo of several members of the lab and another lab at a group dinner.
Dr. Ingersoll’s lab having dinner at a conference with several lab alum, including Dr. Katie Walton and her lab, Dr. Katherine Pickard, and Dr. Allison Wainer.