My primary lines of research focus on applications and effects of strength-based approaches. Specifically, through close partnerships with a variety of K-12 schools, colleges, and universities, I have investigated the potential of educators and schools to promote educational equity through recognizing and valuing the unique strengths and perspectives that students often gain as a direct factor of their lower-socioeconomic status or otherwise marginalized backgrounds. I am beginning to explore how such strength-based understanding of identities that are currently marginalized within society may be applied outside of educational setting and within psychological science as a whole.
My interests and approaches are largely informed by my own experiences growing up in socioeconomically and ethnically diverse contexts throughout the Middle East and Europe. These opportunities helped me recognize the fundamental role that schools, workplaces, and other contexts play in shaping people’s psychological experiences and trajectories, for better and for worse. I am dedicated to conducting research that ensures that these contexts alleviate barriers and authentically support the holistic success of people from marginalized backgrounds.
Outside of work, I love to cook, ride my bike around Chicago’s many wonderful neighborhoods, and listen to lots of music and podcasts. I also help lead a number of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiatives, including Northwestern’s Sneak Peek program for students from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds who are interested in pursuing a Ph.D. in psychology (find more info and the application here!)