My name is Stephanie Carrera, and I am a Counseling Psychology doctoral student in the Department of Psychology. While my hometown is Lisle, Illinois, I identify as second-generation Ecuadorian-American and am the first in my family to pursue a doctoral degree. I completed my undergraduate degrees in English Literature and Psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I work under Dr. Meifen Wei, and my primary research interests include parenting practices and styles in Latina/o and Asian American families, family risk and protective factors in Latina/o and Asian American college student adjustment, and bicultural competence.
My thesis assessed the role of bicultural competence in Latina/o college students’ depression that may result from difficulty communicating and culturally bonding with their families. My dissertation will assess (a) the role of shame in the relationship between interpersonal stressors and depression among Asian American college students and (b) how family perfectionistic discrepancy and self-compassion may influence their experiences. In addition to my role as a researcher, I am also a clinical graduate assistant at the ISU Student Counseling Service and am completing my external practicum in assessment at Innovative Learning Professionals in Des Moines.
In addition to the AGEP fellowship, I have had the privilege to earn the ISU Department of Psychology Excellence in Diversity Research Award, Exceptional Undergraduate Mentoring Award, Research Enhancement Award, Diversity Travel Award, and the Ph.D. Student of Color Mentoring Project Scholarship. At the national level, I am a winner of the American Psychological Association: Division 17 Student Travel Scholarship.
At Iowa State, I have thoroughly enjoyed experiences that expose me to various forms of diversity on campus (e.g., becoming involved with the Latina/o Graduate Student Association, completing the LGBTSS Safe Zone training, participating in ISCORE) and in clinical research and practice. The friendships and work relationships I have been able to create are now invaluable to me. I have also enjoyed watching the flowers bloom around Lagomarcino Hall in spring and the trees turn various hues of red, orange, and yellow in fall.