© 2017 by Society for Vocational Psychology                                                 Webmanager: Kerrie Wilkins-Yel, Ph.D.

STUDENT SPOTLIGHT

Richard Douglass is a 4th year counseling psychology doctoral candidate at the University of Florida. His research is focused on promoting general and vocational well-being among people from marginalized groups. Most recently, Richard and his colleagues conducted the first empirical test of the Psychology of Working Theory among employed LGB adults. Currently, Richard is planning to draw from the PWT to investigate how experiences of marginalization and economic constraints impact the ability to live out a career calling.

Kelsey Autin is a 6th year counseling psychology student at the University of Florida. Working under Dr. Ryan Duffy, she focuses the role of work volition in vocational development. Specifically, Kelsey draws from the Psychology of Working Theory (PWT) to examine the impact of marginalization on the development of work volition and, in turn, on access to decent work. Most recently, Kelsey completed her dissertation on barriers and resources in the career development of undocumented young adults. Currently, Kelsey continues to test PWT hypotheses regarding the role of work volition using a community sample.

Jacks Cheng is a third-year PhD student in Counseling Psychology at Indiana University Bloomington. Jacks is interested in the career development of racial, sexual, and gender minorities in oppressive workspaces. Jacks recently co-wrote a chapter on international issues in LGBT career development as the lead author under the guidance of his advisor, Dr. Y. Barry Chung, and is preparing for a project on influence of race and sexuality on career choice. Jacks is also a member of Dr. Kerrie Wilkins-Yel’s I CAN PERSIST lab, assisting in research projects on women, women of color, and international students’ career development in STEM fields. Jacks hopes to use his acquired knowledge to design multicultural interventions for organizational development and human resources management.

Robert (Bobby) Ortega is a third-year Ph.D. student at the University of Oregon’s Counseling Psychology program, working with Ellen Hawley McWhirter, Ph.D. His current research activities are focused on examining the role of teacher connectedness on school engagement among Latinx students, and understanding the systemic barriers and expanding the career options and aspirations of people leaving incarceration. Bobby co-facilitates an intervention with immigrant Latinx high schoolers focused on increasing school engagement, grades, and critical consciousness. He hopes to continue doing research after graduation, especially with Latinx and Black populations utilizing a critical consciousness/liberation psychology lens.

Christina Cendejas is a second-year counseling psychology doctoral student at the University of Oregon. After graduating from UC Irvine, she worked as an AmeriCorps volunteer and led a college and career readiness program for elementary school students. She is currently working on her Master’s project focused on factors related to the academic success of immigrant Latina/o high school students. As part of Dr. Ellen McWhirter’s ALAS (Advocating for Latina/o Achievement in School) research team, Christina provides a career-based intervention to Spanish-speaking Latina/o high school students. She attended the 2017 APA Convention and presented on ALAS to the Society for Vocational Psychology. Christina is dedicated to ameliorating the educational disparities that exist for Latina/o students in the United States. She hopes to pursue a career in which she conducts vocational research and provides counseling services within higher education.