join the lab as a graduate student

I am recruiting graduate students for the FALL 2025 cycle. If you're interested, please review the FAQ below which is split into these sections:

Questions about joining the Targeted Interventions Lab as a graduate student.

What is your mentorship experience?

I am new faculty, so I have not mentored graduate students yet. However, I have extensive experience mentoring undergraduate students who have gone on to clinical or counseling doctoral programs; master's programs in counseling and data science fields; industry positions; and government agencies. Equity, diversity, and inclusion have been core values in all of my work with students (read more about that here). I look forward to recruiting graduate students who will play an active role in building the culture of our lab.

What is your mentorship style?

My overarching goal is to provide opportunities and training that lead to the development of knowledge and skills that make you highly competitive in whatever career you choose to pursue after graduate school. When you start graduate school, I don't expect you to know with 100% certainty what career you want to have - a lot can happen in 5-6 years. I also don't expect all of my trainees to follow a specific path. I want to provide highly personalized mentorship to my trainees, which means I depend on them to be proactive participants in the mentoring relationship. What does that look like?

I've been reading a lot about Mentoring Up, which is an approach that "empowers mentees to be active participants in their mentoring relationships". The principles of mentoring up include: maintaining effective communication; aligning expectations; assessing understanding; addressing equity and inclusion; fostering independence; promoting professional development; and ethics. If you want to dive deeper into these principles, they are described on page 138 and implementation strategies are listed on page 141.

Note that this approach places a lot of power on the mentee - and with that power comes responsibility. Take a look at these resources to see what you think about this approach:

What kind of training can I expect to receive from you?

To position my trainees to be highly competitive for careers in academia, industry, medical centers, non-profits, or clinical practice, I focus on these key areas:

How do I know if I'm a good fit for the lab?

If you have an interest in the lab's current research priorities and you have relevant experience, then you are probably a good fit. You should note the following:

I also encourage you to engage in an honest reflection of these questions:


Questions about the Clinical Science Program in the Department of Psychology at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

What is the program like?

The atmosphere in the program is collegial and collaborative. The clinical area faculty have expertise in a wide range of areas, including mindfulness and ACT; dissemination and implementation of evidence-based practices; grief and identity; eating disorders; and ADHD. You can read more about the program below.

What is the funding situation for graduate students?

In the last 20 years, all students have received full funding throughout the course of the program. Typically students start in a teaching assistant (TA) position for the first two years before transitioning to a graduate research assistant position (GRA). As stated above, grant-writing is a key training goal for lab members. I will mentor students through the grant application process at NIH so that they can secure their own grants, and there will also be other options for grant funding.

Funding levels can be found on pages 2-3 of our Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data

How competitive are students for internship?

Our students are highly competitive for internship, with many getting their top choice in placement. For a full list of sites where our students have placed and a decade of placement statistics see pages 3-6 of our Student Admissions, Outcomes, and Other Data

Information about UH Mānoa

Questions about the application process.

When is the application due?

Applications for Fall 2025 admissions are due December 1, 2024

What goes into the application?

See: https://psychology.manoa.hawaii.edu/applications-admissions/

Are GRE scores required?

No

What can I do to be a competitive applicant?

There are many factors that are taken into account. Peer-reviewed conference posters and/or publications are an excellent way to demonstrate your involvement in research. If you have these, it's important to describe your specific contributions to the poster/paper in your CV or essay.

What information should I include in my essay?

I agree with much of Mitch’s Uncensored Advice for Applying to Graduate School in Clinical Psychology

"The vast majority of personal statements follow an identical format. First, a brief anecdote is offered describing a watershed moment in which the applicant fully realized their interest in clinical psychology. Next, a brief section describes the applicants’ enthusiasm in one or more psychology undergraduate courses. Research experiences then are described in succession. For each experience, the title and principal investigator of the project are listed, followed by a list of the applicant’s responsibilities and tasks on the project. The statement often ends with a brief paragraph describing research interests, career interests, admiration of the graduate program, and perhaps the name of a specific potential mentor or two... this type of statement is not quite as effective as it may be, in part because so very many statements appear to be remarkably similar to one another. I believe that the statements that truly distinguish themselves are those that demonstrate evidence of the potential to become an independent investigator. As a graduate student, you will be expected to progressively develop research skills that will establish you as an independent scholar. To the extent that it is possible to convey this within the personal statement, you may be able to make your potential to excel as a graduate student very clear to the reader. " - Mitch's Uncensored Advice (p. 27)

So then what should be included in the essay? Here are the things I look out for in an applicant's essay:

Do you meet with prospective applicants before official interviews are offered?

I am happy to schedule a brief zoom meeting with prospective applicants.  I really enjoy hearing about the kind of work applicants are doing. I'm also happy to answer questions and I strongly recommend reading through the material I provide on this website so that your questions can be as specific as possible. If you want to set up a meeting, or just sign up for updates regarding the application process, please complete this form: