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Research Assistants

Current Undergraduate Research Assistants

Undergraduate students play a vital role in our lab as research assistants (RAs). Primary lab responsibilities for undergraduate RAs include interacting with parents and children, and administering experimental stimuli and procedures. RAs also assist in coding experimental and observational data, as well as recruiting families to participate in our research studies. 


Evelyn Hernandez

Evelyn Hernandez is a 1st-year undergraduate from Ventura, California. She is double majoring in Chemistry and Psychology. After graduating from UC Merced, Evelyn plans on attending medical school. In her free time, she likes to read, play chess, and hang out with her friends. 

 Maria Macias

Maria Macias is a fourth-year student majoring in Psychology and minoring in Writing Studies. She focuses on child and adolescent development in her classes and by tutoring, being a caregiver on the weekends to a child with Autism and now learning how to work participate in research. Maria's dream is to become a pediatric behavioral therapist. 

Miriam Martinez

Miriam Martinez is a fourth-year psychology major coming from San Diego, California. Miriam is interested in how children’s emotions and their processing changes as they develop. After college, they plan on attending graduate school and obtaining a Ph.D. in psychology. In their free time, Miriam likes to create digital illustrations, read, and play video games with friends.


Michelle Nezami

Michelle Nezami is a senior from Sacramento, CA. Majoring in human biology, interested in child development, and has dreams of becoming a pediatrician. In her free time, she loves swimming, reading, and spending time with friends and family.


Maria Perez

Maria Perez is a 4th-year undergraduate student from the San Fernando Valley. She is a Biology major and Psychology minor. Maria plans to attend medical school after graduating from UC Merced. She is also involved in the Catholic Newman Club and the Fiat Lux Scholars Program. In her free time, she likes to paint, bake and watch movies with her friends.

 Jessi Robinson

Jessi Robinson is a 2nd-year undergraduate student from Riverside, CA. Majoring in Psychology, Jessi plans to obtain her Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology after graduating from UC Merced. She is also involved in the Campus Activities Board: Marketing Committee, a mentor for the Living Learning Community: Leadership and service and is the Paw Points Student Succes intern. In her free time, she loves to play soccer, write songs and enjoys spending time with family/friends. 

 Leslie Simentel

Leslie Simentel is a 4th-year undergraduate student. She is double majoring in Psychology and Sociology, with a minor in Anthropology. In the future, she would like to work with children as a family and marriage therapist. In her free time, Leslie enjoys playing video/board games, drawing, and watching movies/YouTube with friends. 

 Elisa Sosa

Elisa Sosa is a fourth-year transfer student majoring in Psychology from Antioch California. Elisa is interested in the social aspects of psychology with hopes of working within the juvenile justice system. Upon graduating from Uc Merced she plans on attending graduate school and attaining a master’s degree in social psychology. In her free time she enjoys exploring new hiking trails, cooking, and spending time with family and friends.

Devin Verma

Devin Verma is a 5th-year undergraduate student from Simi Valley, CA. Majoring in Psychology, Devin plans to obtain a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology after graduating from UC Merced. He is also involved in NCPC, the Nicotine and Cannabis Policy Center, creating an escape room for a research lab. In his free time, he is on the UC Merced water polo team, plays the ukulele, and loves to ride dirt bikes and snowboard.