I was born on: 11/19/1976
I am originally from: Rockville Centre, NY
Today, I live in: San Diego, California
My Undergraduate Degree was in: Psychobiology, from: Binghamton University, State University of New York
My Graduate Degree was in: Psychology, from: Yale University
I currently work at: University of California, San Diego
About My Work:
My field of study is: Anxiety Disorders - My goal is to identify factors which affect vulnerability to developing post-traumatic stress disorder.
I enjoy this because: On a day-to-day basis I enjoy this work because no two days are ever alike! The varied responsibilities associated with running experiments, analyzing new data, and writing reports keep things very exciting. In the long-term, I firmly believe that this work on anxiety disorders has the very real potential to identify new drugs to prevent PTSD. This is so important because, despite the highly incapacitating effects of PTSD (on both the individual and the family), there are currently no existing treatments to prevent PTSD. Having the opportunity to conduct research which in a very tangible way may prevent individuals from having to suffer/struggle with PTSD is truly rewarding.
I am currently working on: The projects I am currently working on are determining whether adverse early life environmental events and/or genetic predispositions affect the vulnerability to developing anxiety-like behaviors in adulthood. I am investigating the involvement of environmental and genetic factors by manipulating CRF (corticotropin releasing factor) which is a stress hormone that is disrupted in PTSD.
More About Me:
Right Handed or Left Handed: Left Handed
What is your favorite word? My favorite word is "thoughtful" - I really like this word because it has many different meanings that apply to both the professional and private life. Working as a researcher requires one to constantly be thinking or "full of thought" so that she/he can be prepared for the next discovery or novel scientific idea. In everyday life (especially on days when work has required TOO much thought), it is also so important to try to think of others, be " thoughtful" of what people need, as this always helps to keep things balanced and in perspective!
What place in the world would you most like to visit? I have always wanted to visit Australia because of its unique animals -- it would just be really neat to see these animals in their natural habitat!
Do you have any nicknames? I don't have any nicknames currently. However, when I was a child my nickname (given to me by summer camp friends) was "Jode-ells" which was a smashing up of my first and middle names, Jodi Ellen!
What was the last song that played on your iPod? "We weren't born to follow" ~ Bon Jovi
Favorite TV show: Seinfeld
Desk: messy or organized? I have to admit that it is a very organized mess!
How many languages can you speak and what are they? English is the only language I can speak (but I'm really good at it)!
Do you play any instruments? Violin
Your Perfect Pizza: Simple thin pizza baked in a brick oven (think Sally's Apizza in New Haven, CT)...it just doesn't get much better than that (sorry Pepe's Pizza).
If I was not doing what I am doing today, I might be working as: Hmm...that's a tough question. I'm pretty sure I'd be working with animals in some capacity - maybe as a veterinarian.
Here is what I'd like to share with the world:I'd like to share one of my all-time favorite quotes: "Be like a duck. Calm on the surface but always paddling like the dickens underneath!"
Click here to meet some other NARSAD Young Investigators