Former Graduate Students

| Cindy M. Meston, Ph.D. | Current Graduate Students | Former Graduate Students | Research Staff | Lab Scrapbook |


Penelope Frohlich, Ph. D.
Licensed Clinical Psychologist

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Penelope Frohlich

Penny completed her undergraduate work in Psychology at the University of Texas at Austin and entered the Clinical Psychology doctoral program at UT Austin in 1998. Throughout her graduate career she worked as a Lecturer and Adjunct Professor of Psychology at The University of Texas at Austin and Concordia University at Austin, and published eight peer reviewed articles and chapters on sexuality. She acquired her M.A. in Clinical Psychology in 2001 and completed her predoctoral internship at the Audie L. Murphy Veterans Hospital in San Antonio where she counseled male and female veterans with depression, anxiety, spinal cord injuries, sexual and combat-related post traumatic stress disorder, and sexual dysfunction. She acquired her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Texas at Austin in 2003.

Currently, Penny is a clinical psychologist practicing in the Austin area, offering individual psychotherapy, couples therapy, and sex therapy to adult clients. Her primary areas of expertise include Depression, Anxiety, Addiction/Recovery, Trauma, Relationship issues, and Sexual Dysfunction.

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Alessandra Rellini, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, University of Vermont

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Ale acquired her B.A. in Psychology from Whittier College in California in 1997, and her M.A. in Clinical Psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology in Alameda, California. She entered the Clinical Psychology doctoral program at the University of Texas at Austin in 2001. Alessandra has recently completed her predoctoral internship at Yale-New Haven Psychiatric Hospital/Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven Connecticut, and acquired her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Texas at Austin in 2007.

Ale is an associate professor at the University of Vermont as an Assistant Professor of Psychology within the Clinical Psychology area. Her primary research interest is the psychophysiology and treatment of sexual dysfunction in a variety of populations. She is also interested in cultural differences in sexual function, cognitive processes and sexual function, as well as methodological issues of clinical trials for sexual medicine. Currently, the focus of her lab is the sexual problems of survivors of childhood sexual abuse (CSA). She is working on the development and testing of psychological interventions to help CSA survivors with sexual problems to improve their intimate relationships and their ability to develop.

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Katie McCall, Ph.D.
Licensed Clinical Psychologist

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Katie received her B.A. in psychology from the University of Texas at Austin in 2000 and joined the Meston lab as a doctoral student in the clinical psychology in 2001. Her dissertation focused on examining sexual schemas in women utilizing both qualitative and quantitative approaches and was funded by the Social Science Research Council of the Ford Foundation. Katie completed her pre-doctoral internship as well as a 2 year postdoctoral fellowship prior to accepting a position as a staff psychologist at the Portland VA Medical Center. Additionally, Katie served as the Local Evidence Based Psychotherapy Coordinator for the Portland VAMC and was a member of PVAMC’s Training Committee for psychology interns and postdoctoral fellows.

Currently, Katie is a licensed clinical psychologist with experience providing individual psychotherapy to adults, late adolescents, and seniors. She also has expertise in neuropsychology and provides a broad range of assessments to individuals with psychological or cognitive concerns.

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Andrea Bradford, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Baylor College of Medicine

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Andrea received her B.A. in Psychology in 2000 and her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 2009. Andrea completed her predoctoral internship and postdoctoral fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine prior to accepting a faculty position at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. Andrea is currently an Assistant Professor at Baylor College of Medicine. Her interests include integrated mental health care and management of sexual and reproductive health related problems in women with cancer. Her professional interests include: health psychology, behavioral medicine, digestive diseases, cancer survivorship, and behavioral intervention research.

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Brooke Seal, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, University of The Fraser Valley

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Brooke was born and raised in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. She graduated with a B.A. in psychology from the University of British Columbia in 2002 and received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Texas at Austin in the summer of 2009. Brooke specialized in dialectical behaviour therapy as a post-doctoral clinical fellow at the DBT Centre of Vancouver from 2009-2010. She recently accepted a full-time faculty position in clinical psychology at the University of the The Fraser Valley. She is also continuing her work as a therapist and researcher with the Vancouver General Hospital Multidisciplinary Vulvodynia Program

Her research interests have included the role of self-awareness in sexual functioning, the relationship between body image and sexuality, and, recently, the impact of cognitive behavioural therapy and mindfulness psychoeducational sessions on anxiety and sexual pain. She has presented her research at conferences worldwide and has published several research articles in the areas of sexual function and dysfunction.

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Lisa Dawn Hamilton, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Mount Allison University, Sackville, New Brunswick, Canada

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Lisa Dawn was born and raised just outside of Vancouver, British Columbia. She graduated from Simon Fraser University with a B.A. in Psychology in 2005, and shortly thereafter entered the behavioral neuroscience doctoral program at the University of Texas at Austin. She received her Ph.D. in 2010.

Lisa Dawn’s research interests are with respect to the connection between hormones and sexual behavior. She is currently focused on two distinct research tracks: 1) the relationship between environmental/behavioral influences and hormones and how the two interact to affect sexual behavior. In particular, the effects of stress on various hormonal, physiological, and behavioral outcomes; and 2) The neural correlates of monogamy and non-monogamy via fMRI technologies.

In her free time, Lisa Dawn tries to visit beautiful British Columbia as much as possible to spend time with her family. She also is involved in sexual health education.

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Christopher Harte, Ph.D.
Licensed Clinical Psychologist
Assistant Professor, Boston University School of Medicine

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Website 

Chris acquired his B.A. in psychology from Tufts University in 2002, and received his Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Texas at Austin in 2011. He completed his predoctoral internship and postdoctoral fellowship at the VA Boston Healthcare System.

Chris is currently a licensed psychologist in private practice in the Greater Boston area. He specializes in evidence-based psychological interventions for health conditions such as sexual dysfunction, insomnia, weight difficulties, nicotine dependence, and chronic pain. Chris is also an expert in the delivery of empirically-supported psychological treatments for mood, anxiety, and traumatic stress disorders. He helps many clients who struggle with issues such as worry, phobias, panic attacks, obsessions and compulsions, PTSD, depression, and adjustment difficulties.

Chris remains active in research and he is Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Boston University School of Medicine. He has been awarded several research grants, including funding from the National Institutes of Health, to study interventions for effective health behavioral change.

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Tierney Lorenz, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, University of Lincoln, Nebraska 

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Dr. Lorenz received her Ph.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Texas at Austin in 2013 after completing internship at the University of Washington School of Medicine. From 2013 to 2016, she was an NICHD-funded postdoctoral fellow at the Kinsey Institute and the Center for the Integrative Study of Animal Behavior at Indiana University. From 2016 – 2018, she was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychological Science at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Dr. Lorenz’s research examines the interaction between women’s mental, physical and sexual health. The Women, Immunity and Sexual Health (WISH) lab investigates the ways that sexual behavior impact women’s immune and endocrine function, as well as ways to help women with mental and/or physical health conditions have happy, healthy sexual lives. We also focus on helping survivors of sexual trauma through basic science and clinical research. Our research draws from evolutionary and feminist science perspectives, and uses methods from multiple fields, including measures of hormones and immune markers, psychophysiological measures of sexual and autonomic arousal, clinical trials, surveys and interviews, and more.

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Yasisca Pujols, Ph.D.
Clinical Psychologist, Brownsville, Texas

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Yasisca was born in New York City and was raised in the suburbs of Houston, Texas. She completed her undergraduate work at the University of Texas at Austin and acquired two B.A. degrees; one in studio art (2003) and the second in psychology (2007). From 2005 – 2007 she has worked as a research assistant in the Sexual Psychophysiological Laboratory where she has studied the effects of body image on sexual arousal in women. Yasisca began her graduate training within the clinical psychology doctoral program at the University of Texas at Austin in the fall of 2007.

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Kyle Stephenson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, School of Psychology, Xavier University

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Kyle was born and raised in Santa Clara, California and graduated from Santa Clara University with a B.S. in Psychology. He worked in the departments of psychology and psychiatry at Stanford University before entering the University of Texas at Austin clinical psychology doctoral program in 2008. Kyle completed his psychology internship at the Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Healthcare System in Seattle, WA. After, he was an Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology at Willamette University in Salem, Oregon. He is currently an Associate Professor of Psychology at Xavier University in Ohio.

Kyle’s primary line of research explores the structure and determinants of subjective sexual well-being. He has conducted a series of studies examining the reasons why, and the circumstances in which, impaired sexual function is associated with subjective distress. He is also involved in research on the link between psychological trauma, sexual dysfunction, and PTSD. His current projects explore the efficacy of mindfulness-based interventions for sexual dysfunction and PTSD. His work has been published in a number of peer-reviewed international journals including the Journal of Sexual Medicine, Archives of Sexual Behavior, the Journal of Traumatic Stress, Child Abuse & Neglect, and the Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy.

Clinically, Kyle has specialized in the treatment of anxiety disorders, relational distress, and sexual dysfunction. He has received training in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy, Integrative Behavioral Couples Therapy, and Emotion Focused Couples Therapy.

Kyle’s first love is music and in his free time he can be found playing his drums, out at a venue, or searching for new additions to his top-ten, all-time, desert island list of albums.

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Carey Pulverman, Ph.D.

Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Relate Center
Research Associate, Dell Medical School of the University of Texas at Austin

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Carey completed her Bachelors degree at New York University where she studied urban sociology and Spanish. She graduated from Hunter College of the City University of New York with a Masters in General Psychology in the spring of 2011. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 2017 with a Doctorate in Clinical Psychology, which included a clinical internship at the South Texas VA. She completed her postdoctoral fellowship at the VISN 17 Center of Excellence for Research on Returning War Veterans, where she studied the mental and sexual health of female veterans with a history of sexual trauma. She is currently in private practice and continues her research on women veterans at Dell Medical School of the University of Texas at Austin.

Carey’s research interests focus on the impact of childhood sexual abuse on adult women’s sexual functioning. She is especially interested in treatments that can speed recovery for survivors and improve their relationship to their own sexuality.

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Amelia Stanton, Ph.D.
Clinical Research Fellow, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School

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Amelia was born and raised in New York City. She completed her Bachelors degree at Brown University in Providence, RI, where she studied both comparative literature and psychology. She graduated from UT Austin’s Sexual Psychophysiology lab in 2019 with a doctorate in clinical psychology, which included a clinical internship in Behavioral Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow in a T32 clinical research training program that focuses on addressing global public mental health challenges.

Amelia’s research focus is the development of psychosocial interventions that improve women’s overall sexual well-being and sexual function, particularly among women who are at greatest risk for poor sexual health. She is particularly interested in adapting empirically supported treatments to meet the sexual health needs of women living with HIV or at risk for acquiring HIV in low and middle income countries. She also hopes to contribute to the development of specialized treatments for women with a history of sexual trauma and interpersonal violence who develop sexual problems post-abuse.

When she is not in the lab, Amelia enjoys reading, listening to country music, and playing fetch with her dogs.

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Ariel B. Handy, Ph.D.

Postdoctoral fellow, The Concord Center and McLean Hospital

Ariel

E-mail: arielbhandy@utexas.edu
Curriculum Vita 
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Ariel was born and raised in Vermont. She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Vermont where she majored in psychology and Spanish. During her time there, she worked in UVM’s Sexual Health Research Clinic researching the influence of emotions and sexual arousal on decision making in risky sexual situations. Upon graduating, she moved to Vancouver, British Columbia to research mindfulness as treatment for low sexual desire and sexual quality of life in cancer survivors at Vancouver General Hospital. She entered UT Austin’s Sexual Psychophysiology Laboratory in the fall of 2015.

Ariel’s research interests focus on the measurement of female physiological sexual response. Her program of research spans topics such as using advanced statistical models to better understand nuanced trajectories of vaginal blood flow, and developing methods for measuring understudied aspects of sexual arousal (e.g., vaginal lubrication). Her research also incorporates neuroendocrinology and looks specifically at hormonal modulation of physiological sexual response.

Ariel enjoys riding her bicycle, cooking, and spending time with her partner, dog, and bird.

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Chelsea D. Kilimnik, Ph.D.

Assistant Research Professor, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, University of Colorado Boulder

chelsea_photoE-mail: chelseakilimnik@utexas.edu
Curriculum Vita 
[PDF]

Chelsea Kilimnik was born and raised in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada where she completed her Bachelors degree at the University of Winnipeg studying Psychology and Creative Writing. Her undergraduate thesis, conducted under the supervision of Dr. Paul Trapnell, was on the role of nonconsensual sexual experience (NSE) histories and identification of these experiences in women’s sexual satisfaction and implicit attentional biases. Chelsea completed a Master’s degree in Health Psychology at Trent University in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada under the supervision of Dr. Terry Humphreys. Her thesis examined the role of NSE history and identification in sexual consent attitudes and sexual affectivity. Since beginning her doctoral studies in Clinical Psychology at UT in the Fall of 2015, Chelsea has continued her program of research in NSEs and identification by examining the impact on sexual well-being, proposing novel methods of studying and classifying NSEs, and assessing processes of schema and identity reformation in the maintenance of psychosexual distress as well as treatment targets for improving sexual well-being.

Chelsea’s research interests are the psychosexual correlates of NSEs and sexual violence, identity formation and meaning making, sexual schemas, and accessible interventions for improving post-NSE adjustment. She has volunteered with a number of organizations dedicated to the support of individuals with sexual violence experiences, including crisis and outreach centres, Tack Back the Night initiatives, and committees for policy development on ending sexual violence. Chelsea’s other interests include swimming, sailing, kayaking, coffee, writing, and reading.

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