Dr. Jasper Smits awarded NIDA grant (July 2019)
Dr. Jasper Smits was awarded a grant by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) for a study titled Isradipine and Virtual Reality Cue Exposure for Smoking Cessation. Congratulations Dr. Smits!
Dr. Jasper Smits awarded NIDA grant (May 2019)
Dr. Jasper Smits was awarded a grant by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) for a study titled Effectiveness of an integrated treatment to address smoking cessation and anxiety/depression in people living with HIV. Congratulations Dr. Smits! Read more about it here!
Emily Carl awarded Fellowship
Emily was awarded the Dianne and Jerry Grammer Fellowship for Mental Health Research. Way to go!
Jolene Jacquart defends dissertation (May 2019)
Jolene successfully defended her dissertation project, Exercise for Mental Health. Congratulations, we’re so proud of you!!
Aliza Stein Summer 2019 updates
Aliza was awarded the Grammer Summer 2019 Fellowship for Mental Health Research to support her position as a practicum student within McLean Hospital’s Behavioral Health Partial Program. Enjoy Boston and we’ll see you in the fall!
Scarlett Baird defends dissertation (May 2019)
Scarlett successfully defended her dissertation project, Physical Activity and Community Engagement (PACE) for Veteran Reintegration. She’s off to San Diego for her internship!
Jolene Jacquart awarded Janet T. Spence Award for her work as a Teaching Assistant (May 2019)
Jolene was awarded the Janet T. Spence Award by UT’s Psychology Department for her outstanding work and role as a Teaching Assistant in the Clinical Psychology Practicum.
Project coordinator, Zane Freeman, accepts graduate school offer (March 2019)
Zane has accepted an offer to pursue his doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology at the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee under the mentorship of Dr. Han Joo Lee. Zane’s research interests include the factors that contribute to the etiology and maintenance of anxiety disorders.
Project coordinator, Haley Conroy, accepts graduate school offer (March 2019)
Haley has accepted an offer to pursue her doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology at the University of Houston under the mentorship of Dr. Andres Viana. Haley aims to address psychosocial factors that may undermine treatment efficacy and implementation amongst child and adolescent populations.
Aliza Stein dissertation update (March 2019)
Aliza finished enrollment for her dissertation project, Get Sh** Done. N=100/100!
Santiago Papini dissertation update (April 2019)
Santiago successfully proposed his dissertation!
Graduate student, Scarlett Baird, matches for Clinical Internship (February 2019)
Scarlett, 5th-year doctoral student, will be leaving us to complete her Clinical Internship at the University of San Diego School of Medicine/ VA San Diego Healthcare System. Congratulations, Scarlett!
Graduate student, Jolene Jacquart, matches for Clinical Internship (February 2019)
Jolene, 5th-year doctoral student, will be leaving us to complete her Clinical Internship in General Adult Psychology at Vanderbilt University’s Medical Center. So proud of you, Jolene!
Graduate student Christy Dutcher interviewed in The Daily Texan (September 2018)
In The Daily Texan article, Christy Dutcher describes the services offered by the Anxiety & Stress Clinic supervised by Dr. Jasper Smits. Read the article here!
Welcoming first-year graduate student, Christy Dutcher (August 2018)
We are ecstatic to announce former AHBL Research Associate and Clinician, Christy Dutcher, will begin as a first year Clinical Psychology Ph.D. student this fall! Her research interests include augmenting existing evidence based-treatments for anxiety disorders.
Dr. Jasper Smits interviewed in Refinery29 (July 2018)
In The Refinery29 article, Dr. Jasper Smits talks about the benefits of exercise for anxiety and stress. Read the article here!
Dr. Jasper Smits interviewed by the Washington Post (June 2018)
In a Washington Post article, Dr. Jasper Smits talks about the benefits of exercise for mood disorders.Read the article here!
Michelle Davis graduates (May 2018)
Michelle Davis has graduated the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program and will be moving on to a postdoctoral fellowship at Baylor College of Medicine in the Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Program. Congratulations Dr. Davis!
Dr. Jasper Smits and graduate students presenting at ADAA’s 38th Annual Conference in Washington D.C.
Current and previous members of the AHBL presented their research in a symposium titled “Exercise for Mental Health: Impact of Exercise Prescription Variables & Adherence on Clinical Outcomes.”
Smoking Cessation Study Featured in The Daily Texan
An AHBL study, which combines smoking cessation and exercise in partnership with the YMCA and CPRIT, has been featured in The Daily Texan. Read the article here!
Recent graduate, Johnna Medina, presents at the 2017 APA Convention
Johnna Medina presented her work, Yoga for Depression: New Research on Efficacy, Mechanisms and Acceptability, in a symposium at APA Convention, Division 12 Society of Clinical Psychology in Washington, D.C.
Johnna Medina graduates
Johnna Medina has graduated the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program and will be moving on to a post-doc position at Stanford. Congratulations Dr. Johnna Medina!
Jolene Jacquart presents at the ISSP 14th World Congress of Sports Psychology in Seville, Spain
Jolene presented her research in a symposium for Exercise & Mental Health in Clinical Populations. Read more about the talk, titled “An Exercise Augmented Smoking Cessation Treatment for Individuals with High Anxiety Sensitivity: The Relationship Between Attendance Patterns and Quit Success” here!
Michelle Davis receives the Ira Isco Fellowship for 2017
Michelle, our 5th year graduate student, was awarded the 2017 Ira Isco Fellowship for her excellent academic record. Read more about this prestigious award here! Congratulations Michelle!
Scarlett Baird receives Lee Willerman Award
Scarlett, our 3rd year graduate student, was awarded the Lee Willerman Award for Excellence in Research for her first author journal article titled “Reducing Approach Bias to Achieve Smoking Cessation: A Pilot Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial.” Read more about previous recipients here! Congratulations Scarlett!!
Dr. Powers participated on the “Virtual Reality Therapy: Treatment for the World” panel at the 2017 SXSW in Austin, Tx
Dr. Mark Powers discussed the role of Virtual Reality as a treatment method for mental health issues. Read more about it here!
Dr. Jasper Smits awarded CPRIT grant
Dr. Jasper Smits was given the “Individual Investigator Research Awards for Prevention and Early Detection Award” by the Cancer Prevention & Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) for his grant titled Exercise as an Aid to Smoking Cessation in Anxiety Vulnerable Adults. Congratulations Dr. Smits! Read more about it here!
Johnna Medina will be a post-doctoral researcher at Stanford University Medicine
Johnna Medina will continue her research training as a post-doc at Stanford University Medicine, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences in Stanford, CA. Congratulations Johnna!
Graduate student, Michelle Davis, matches for internship site
Michelle Davis, our 5th year doctoral student, has matched at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Tx for internship! Congratulations, Michelle!
Dr. Smits interviewed for NY Times article on the benefits of exercise on mental health
In a NY Times article, Dr. Jasper Smits talks about the benefits of exercise for stress and depression.
Project coordinator, Sara Witcraft, has accepted graduate school offer
Sara Witcraft will be leaving the AHBL at the end of summer to attend graduate school at the University of Mississippi’s Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program. Congrats, Sara!
Exercise mimics anxiety symptoms, helps anxious smokers quit
Drs. Smits and Powers and graduate student Michelle Davis were quoted in an article in the Daily Texan. Their research has indicated that exercise helps smokers quit and stay quit by lowering anxiety sensitivity, or the fear of bodily sensations associated with anxiety.
Smits’ research suggests exercise helps anxious people quit smoking
Exercise helps smokers with a high risk for cessation failure due to emotional distress finally kick the habit, according to new research spearheaded by Dr. Smits. Read the full article here!
Graduate student, Johnna Medina, matches for internship site
Johnna Medina, our 5th year doctoral student, has matched at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Miami, Florida for internship! Congrats, Johnna!
Study clinician, Anne Kleinsasser, accepts graduate school offer
Anne Kleinsasser, our research associate clinician, has accepted an offer to attend Baylor University’s funded Psy.D. program. Congrats, Anne!
Graduate student, Jolene Jacquart, wins APA, UT award
Second year graduate student, Jolene Jacquart, has been awarded the American Psychological Foundation Graduate Research Scholarship ($1,000) and UT’s 2015 Grammer Fellowship for Mental Health Research ($2,500) for her innovative research on exercise augmentation for acrophobia! Congrats, Jolene!
Exercise Augmentation for PTSD
Dr. Smits is interviewed in The Guardian on his research on exercise’s efficacy for treating PTSD. See the article here!
Student Awarded First Place
First-year graduate student, Santiago Papini, won first place at the annual International Society of Traumatic Stress Studies (ISTSS) meeting for his poster titled Trajectories Of Early Response to Treatment Predict Post-Treatment Outcomes among Women with Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. This award is presented annually to recognize excellent work in a poster submission to the ISTSS Annual Meeting. The winner is selected by a panel of judges among a pool of finalists.
The Exercise Prescription
See Dr. Michael Otto, who collaborated with Dr. Smits, speak about their book Exercise for Mood and Anxiety: Proven strategies for overcoming depression and enhancing well-being here!
Exercise beneficial for PTSD
Dr. Powers gives a talk on local radio station KUT on the benefit of exercise for individuals who suffer from PTSD. Click here to listen to his talk!
Exercise for Mental Health
Dr. Smits gives his input on exercise in the world of mental health. Please click here to learn more about the effect exercise may have on your mood.
Anxiety & Health Behaviors Lab Featured on Austin’s KXAN
Please click here to see how two of our studies are working to help smokers kick the habit this holiday season.
Biobehavioral Mechanisms Underlying Yoga’s Effects on Nicotine Withdrawal
Johnna Medina receives an NIH grant to study biobehavioral mechanisms underlying the effects of yoga on nicotine withdrawal. Please click here for more information.
Michelle Davis presents at the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Oxford
One of our graduate students presented her research on attention bias and social anxiety disorder treatment at the University of Oxford in July prior to attending the British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies conference (BABCP) in Birmingham, UK.
Mark Powers was selected to be a Beck Scholar
This prestigious award is given each year to a handful of faculty interested in improving and developing their skills in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). Dr. Aaron Beck, one of the world’s leading researchers in psychopathology, established this treatment in the 1960’s. It has since become the gold standard for psychotherapy- please click on the following link to learn more about this amazing institute: Beck Institute for Cognitive Therapy and Research. Congratulations Dr. Powers!
Drs. Powers & Smits Featured in “Runner’s World Magazine”
“Running Back From Hell” emphasizes the importance of running as a potential intervention for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Check out the article to read about how this simple exercise is transforming lives!
PTSD Predictors Makes ISTSS News
Drs. Powers and Smits recently published a paper examining possible predictors of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). The findings are highly relevant as they could potentially boost prevention efforts and help those who have experienced a trauma. Check out “Assessment of Post-Traumatic Injury Risk: Whom Should We Keep an Eye On?”to read about those most at risk.
Could regular exercise be the solution to anxiety?
Dr. Smits and colleagues recently found that exercising regularly for as little as two weeks can lead to improvements in anxiety sensitivity. Read more about the amazing health benefits (including improved mood) in “Health: Exercise benefits the body and brain.”
Study on Social Anxiety Disorder Makes MDLinx
Dr. Smits recently published findings on yohimbine as an augmentative strategy for exposure therapy among those with social anxiety disorder. The results were promising; yohimbine seemed to improve social anxiety symptoms, particularly when combined with successful exposure sessions. Better yet, the patients were more likely to report the effects as beneficial, suggesting that this may be a route to improve overall session success. These findings may help clinicians improve the effectiveness of their therapy sessions and enhance a patient’s learning experience-without significant side effects. Learn more here.