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Play is Our Major

Meet the Team

We have a remarkable group of people working in the lab.  Read a little about them and their childhood favorites below! 

Jennifer Van Reet, Ph.D., Principal Investigator

Dr. Van Reet is an associate professor of psychology at Providence College, specializing in how our minds develop throughout childhood and into adulthood. She started this lab in the fall of 2008 to give her studies a home at PC and to give students interested in learning more about development a place to train. Growing up, she read every Nancy Drew book she could get her hands on. These days, if she was a children’s character, she would be Owl from Winnie-the-Pooh.

Fall 2019

Kathy Bonilla

Julia Culhane ’20.

Marki Montinola

Olivia Moss ’21. Olivia is a sophomore from Long Island, New York. Here at Providence College she studies both psychology and marketing. She is very excited to be a part of the Kid Think team!

Allie Powers ’20. Allie is a junior psychology major with a Spanish minor hoping to attend graduate school for pediatric occupational therapy. She loves working with children and is very excited to be a part of the Kid Think team this semester!

Sophie Riddick ’22.


Adriana Acerra ’19. Adriana is pursuing a career in occupational therapy.

Katie Boguszewski ’11. Katie spent some time working toward her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology at the University of Virginia.

Danielle Caddick ’18. Danielle is working on a graduate degree in School Psychology.

Danielle Colabatistto ’16. Danielle’s senior thesis explore the role of fantasy in school age children’s math learning. She earned a Masters in School Psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Amanda Colletti ‘09. After several years working as a research assistant in Providence, Amanda earned her MS in Marriage and Family Therapy at URI.

Sarah Conway ‘09. Sarah’s senior thesis on children’s drawing and attention abilities was presented at a conference the year after she graduated.

Alex Cribbin ’14. Alex earned a Master’s in Art Therapy. She now works as an In-Home Therapist at Justice Resource Institute.

Mikaila Christopher ’17Mikaila’s senior thesis investigated if children can learn false emotions through pretend play. She just started graduate work at Tufts University.

Rosie DeRienzo ’15. Rosie’s senior thesis examined whether children could learn prosocial behaviors from fantastical stories. She earned a degree in Applied Behavior Analysis at Cambridge College.

Emma Duffy ’16. Emma just wrapped up two years in the City Year program in Boston.

Lauren Elia ’16.

Michaela Fahey ’16. Michaela’s senior thesis tested whether preschoolers can learn vocabulary in pretend play. She earned a degree in speech language pathology at the MGH Institute of Health Professions.

Annie Fast ’13. Annie just earned her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology at the University of Washington and started as an Assistant Professor at Western Washington University.

Vanessa Fiasconaro ’12. Vanessa is a teacher in New York City and earned her Master’s Degree in Education at Hunter College.

Laura Filloramo ’10. Laura earned her MA in Marriage and Family Therapy at St. Joseph’s College in Connecticut.

Gabriella Galeazzi ’15. Gabbi’s senior thesis explored whether children remember more or less from fantastical stories. She earned a Masters in Counseling at Boston College.

Kathryn Graf ’14. Kathryn’s senior thesis explored the nuanced relationship between adolescent inhibitory control and abstract reasoning and went on to pursue a degree in nursing.

Christina Lavigne, ’13. Christina’s senior thesis project investigated the relationship between inhibitory control and anxiety in middle childhood.

Ana León ’16. Ana’s independent study explored children’s understanding of ownership transfers. She earned a Masters degree in Neuroscience and Education at Columbia University.

Sarah Maley, ’18.  Sarah is pursuing a Masters in School Counseling.

Colleen McInnis ’12.  Colleen spent many years working with a company that helps students study abroad.

Beth Moriarty ’12. Beth earned her Master’s Degree in School Psychology at Tufts University.

Kelly Murner ’15. Kelly hopes to pursue a graduate degree in school or educational psychology. Her senior thesis investigated how to encourage school-age children to be incremental learners.

Anna Roy ’17.  Anna spent a year working as a Lab Coordinator for the BabyTalk lab at the Wexler Medical Center in Ohio.

Jamie Russo ’17.  Jamie is working with City Year in Boston.

Victoria Sanborn ’15.  Victoria’s senior thesis was a critical review of why pretending is difficult for autistic children. She is pursuing a degree in clinical psychology.

Caitlin Shanley ’18. Caitlin just completed a year of service with the Jesuit Volunteer Corp.

Kelly Sheehan ’11. Kelly earned her Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology at Northwestern University, working primarily in David Uttal’s lab. After completing a postdoctoral fellowship at the Center on Media and Human Development, she is now a User Research Specialist at Age of Learning, Inc. Follow her blog here:

Cristina Taylor ’14. Cristina is pursuing a degree in medicine, hoping to specialize in child and adolescent mental health.

Josette Tugander ’19. Josette is working in a psychology research lab full time now.

Emily Ventura ’18. Emily is working for a year before starting a graduate program in Speech-Language Pathology.

Arielle Wezdenko ’13. Arielle’s senior thesis found that children’s prosocial behavior is affected by their inhibitory control. She recently earned a Master’s in School Psychology at Northeastern University.