Lab Member Highlights: Meet Alicia Wang!

by Megan Zhang

Alicia Wang is an NYU graduate student and research intern at the Neuroscience and Education Lab. We sat down to chat about her experiences at NEL.

Tell us a little bit about your background.

I’m a second-year master student from the Human Development
and Social Intervention program under the Department of Applied Psychology
in NYU Steinhardt. I graduated from the China University of Political Science
and Law in 2013. Although I majored in law in college, I have always been
attracted to psychology for its practical uses, so I choose this program.

As a research intern at NEL, what do your responsibilities include?

I help with different projects in NEL. I do micro-analytical coding of
visual attention, extracting data from videos, and cleaning data from the
Chicago School Readiness Project. Since last October, I have been working on the team led by Dr. Michael Sulik, and editing heart rate data. I also work with Dr. Regula
Neuenschwander, doing on-site data collection. For the Chicago School
Readiness Project, I ‘m doing geographical information coding.  Aside from all this, I’m writing my master thesis, on Respiratory Sinus Arrythmia.

What has been the most rewarding or educational aspect of interning at NEL?

There are so many great people and rewarding projects in this lab, and my experiences have taught me more about what science and research really mean. My mentor Dr. Sulik has a rigorous and passionate attitude towards science and is great at explaining
complicated theories; my supervisor Jessica is super efficient and
careful with work. I’ve never seen an unread email in her inbox!

What do you think is a pressing question in developmental psychology today?

It’s well known that poverty has a profound impact on the development
of children. So I think it’s important to know the mechanisms of this
impact and to work out effective interventions to buffer this
negative effect.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

I hope to work as a research assistant in research-related fields for
a few years to gain more experience.