ARC Lab Members

Lab Director

Post-Doctoral Fellows

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Ashley Lynn Weinberg (She/Her)

Ashley seeks to understand how intergroup contact shapes the nature of people’s social relationships, as well as the ways it impacts larger group-level relations (e.g. support for BLM or immigration reform). Her research focuses on the psychological dynamics underpinning social interactions within intergroup relationships (e.g., friends), as well as intimate discussions centered on group differences within various intergroup contexts. She aims to assess how discussions about race, discrimination, and inequality affect interpersonal and intergroup processes, focusing on racially minoritized people. Currently, Ashley is working to extend her work to examine broader health and belongingness outcomes that result from intergroup contact and close intergroup relationships. Ashley has a passion for communicating research to the public and using research to address social issues and advocate for social change. For fun she loves to take dance classes, do yoga, spend time with her family, and dabbles in interior decorating!

Graduate Students

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Nicole Johnson (She/Her)

Nicole's research focuses on examining the influence of adversity on close relationships and how these relationships can either mitigate or exacerbate the consequences of adversity. While pursuing her undergraduate and master's degrees at Stanford University, she studied how the development of friendship networks could predict the well-being trajectories of college students. Now, in her first year at Princeton, Nicole is developing a scale to assess adversity in adulthood. This scale will enable her to trace the impact of adverse life experiences on the close relationships and overall well-being of adults. In her leisure time, Nicole likes to visit New York City, spend time with family and friends, chill in cafes, and bike around New Jersey.

[email protected]


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Priscilla Diaz-Gonzalez (She/Her)

Priscilla's research focuses on examining and addressing the systemic educational inequities that first-generation college experience in academic institutions. While pursuing her undergraduate degree at the University of California - Santa Barbara, she studied how social support influences first-generation Latinx/e college students' belonging and university fit. Prior to joining the lab, Priscilla was a research coordinator at Northwestern University studying how to create culturally inclusive educational environments for students from marginalized backgrounds. In her free time, Priscilla likes to spend quality time with her loved ones, try new coffee shops, and watch the sunset.

[email protected]

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Maddy Paxson (She/Her)

Maddy’s research aims to understand how people form, maintain, and benefit from their social connections. In particular, she’s interested in 1) identifying and addressing barriers to social connection, 2) understanding how intergroup connections impact people from marginalized backgrounds, and 3) exploring changes in the nature of close relationships during life transitions. As an undergraduate at the University of Michigan, her thesis examined the role of color-evasive racial ideology in close interracial relationships. Before coming to Princeton, she was a predoctoral fellow with Behavior Change for Good at the University of Pennsylvania where she supported the analysis and implementation of megastudies – massive field experiments – including those aimed at increasing student performance through social interventions. For fun, she likes to eat ice cream, watch live theatre and comedy, and take long walks with good people.

[email protected]


Lab Managers

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Colten Harper (He/Him)

Colten’s research interests lie broadly in the intersections of queer theory and social psychology. He is interested in how identity-based adversity influences how LGBTQ-identifying individuals form, value, and navigate their social relationships. Specifically, he is curious about the concept of “chosen family” and seeks to examine how experiences of stigma or familial estrangement direct who queer people seek support from. He received his B.A. in Psychology and Gender & Sexuality Studies along with a minor in History from Vanderbilt University. Outside of research, Colten enjoys playing volleyball, practicing his Spanish, and watching films with his orange cat, Stanley.

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Danny Hang (He/Him)

Danny's research interests are broadly guided by how and why individuals behave differently from their social groups, especially in positive and prosocial ways. More specifically, he is interested in applying this on how identities and contexts shape intergroup interactions. Currently, he interested in conflict and solidarity at an intergroup and intragroup level (e.g., addressing economic inequality and Queer rights movements). He received his B.A. in Psychology and Social Behavior along with a minor in Education from the University of California, Irvine. He will be matriculating to the University of Utah for a Ph.D. program in Fall 2024. Danny is a huge foodie (cooking/baking) and spends his free time playing video games,  watching anime/shows, and swimming.

[email protected]



Ivania Asencio

Ivania Asencio (She/Her)

Ivania is interested in exploring how carceral experiences shape both identity and the navigation of post-incarcerated life, as well as how strong social ties can serve to reduce recidivism rates. Ivania received her B.A in Psychology from Princeton University, completing her senior thesis entitled “The Incarcerated Identity: Examining the Roles of Protective & Risk Factors on Recidivism for Formerly Incarcerated Individuals” while working as a research assistant in the ARC Lab. Outside of work, Ivania enjoys going to flea markets, thrift stores, and Princeton Record Exchange to expand her CD collection.

[email protected]

Research Assistants

Marlene Cardoza standing outside

Marlene Cardoza (She/Her)

Marlene is a senior at Princeton University and is majoring in psychology and pursuing certificates in Portuguese and Latino Studies. She is interested in studying how children’s adverse experiences affect their thought processes and behaviors in adulthood. During her free time, Marlene loves spending time with her niece and nephew, watching Ink Master, and challenging her friends to a card memorization game and to multiple rounds of Word Hunt. 

One of the research Assistants Tiffanie Cheng. There is a skyline in the background

Tiffanie Cheng (She/Her)

Tiffanie is a senior at Princeton University majoring in Psychology and minoring in East Asian Studies. She is working on her thesis about relationship formation in first-year college students and how it plays into their social networks, relationships, and health outcomes. Tiffanie is a daily 27-minute napper (ask her about it)!

Angel standing out front of a Princeton building

Angel Kuo (He/Him)

Angel is a senior at Princeton University majoring in Neuroscience with a Mandarin Language and Culture certificate. He is interested in the effects of short-form media usage on regions of the brain focused on emotional regulation and their subsequent effects on self-conscious emotions. Whether at home or in the dorms, during his free time, Angel is most likely tending to one of his 70+ houseplants.

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Ellie Berman (She/Her)

Ellie is a junior at Princeton University majoring in Psychology and minoring in Global Health Policy with a certificate in Spanish. She is interested in health inequities and how social networks can be leveraged to increase the efficacy of public health interventions, as well as how the healthcare system can be changed on a systemic level. In her free time, she loves reading, spending time with her dogs, and watching TV with friends.

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Lily Parris (She/Her)

Lily is a junior at Princeton University majoring in Psychology and pursuing a certificate in French. She is interested in exploring the factors that lead some individuals to display resilience when confronted with adversity, as opposed to those who do not. She would like to investigate further the role that social relationships have and whether they are a cause or a consequence of these adverse experiences. Outside of academics, Lily runs the 100m hurdles as part of the Track & Field team. She also enjoys playing card games with her friends and watching British rom-coms.

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Melissa Ruiz (She/Her)

Melissa is a junior at Princeton University majoring in Psychology and pursuing a minor in Latino Studies. She is interested in how socioeconomic status impacts identity and social connections formed in college. During her free time, Melissa loves to go on walks and capture landscape shots on her camera.

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Aarushi Adlakha (She/Her)

Aarushi is a sophomore at Princeton University majoring in Psychology. She is interested in studying how identities and backgrounds impact forming and sustaining different kinds of relationships. During her free time, Aarushi can be found reading, crocheting (while watching a show) or taking pictures around campus. 

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Lena Chau (She/Her)

Lena is currently a sophomore at Princeton University majoring in Psychology with a prospective minor in Neuroscience. Her research interests lie in understanding how being a part of an underserved population influences one’s thoughts and behaviors when reaching out to healthcare providers and receiving adequate treatment. During her free time, Lena will either be at Junbi taking a boba break or in her dorm doing her daily NYT games like Wordle and Connections.

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Yuka Childers (She/Her)

Yuka is a sophomore at Princeton University thinking of majoring in Psychology with a minor in English and a certificate in creative writing. She is interested in studying adversity experienced during childhood and how it impacts their social behavior in adulthood. Outside of classes she enjoys working out in the gym, reading, watching movies and hanging out with friends.

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Alina Ho (She/Her)

Alina is a sophomore at Princeton University majoring in Psychology and potentially pursuing a minor in Global Health Policy and a certificate in Cognitive Science. She is interested in the varying ability to be open about mental health in close relationships and the social norms that drive our daily interactions, especially in lower-class backgrounds. Outside of school, she loves excessively cleaning, playing video games, and eating spicy food.

Lab Pups

One of Rebecca's dogs Luna. She is running in a field with a blue tennis ball in her mouth.

Luna Carey 

Luna is studying the processes by which we can avoid peeing when excited. How do our close relationships influence our ability to regulate our bodies? She knows how to sit and heel when asked. Her favorite nightly tradition is stealing Rebecca’s napkin at the end of a meal.

One of Rebecca's dogs Sunny. She is standing in mulch outside

Sunny Carey

Sunny is researching why the blue toy tastes so good. More specifically, he is investigating whether we can eat toys without experiencing shame or stomach problems. He knows how to sit when asked. Sunny’s favorite tradition is riding in the car, and it does not matter whose car it is. 

Lab Alumni

Graduate Student and Post-Docs Alumni

2022-2024 | Lori Hazel | Graduate Student | Graduated with a Masters in 2024


Lab Manager Alumni

2022-2024 | Danny Hang | Social Psychology PhD student at University of Utah

2023-2024 | Ivania Asencio | Counseling Psychology MA student at Teacher's College

2022-2023 | Courteney Parry | Currently an Intensive Case Manager at Sevita

2021- 2022 | Emma Miller | Psychology PhD student at Columbia University


Lab Research Assistant Alumni

2021-2024 | Tiffanie Cheng |

2021-2024 | Angel Kuo |

2022-2024 | Marlene Cardoza | Clinical Psychology PhD student at Clark University

2021-2023 | Samantha Lopez Carrizales |

2021-2023 | Selinay Kaplan

2022-2023 | David Eniola | MD student at Rutgers Medical School

2021-2022 | Helen Wang | Currently a Postbaccalaureate Scholar at NIH

2021-2022 | AJ Wallace