For Interested Students

The Brain Development Lab, part of the Psychology Department at Penn State, is looking for research assistants to study brain development in infants, children, and adolescents for Fall 2021. You can earn research project (PSY 494) credit or work study funds, and learn video, computer, and communication skills. Prior research experience and computer skills are a plus, but aren’t required. We are especially interested in students who have morning availability, computer skills, or are interested in developing skills in advertising, marketing, or public relations. You may apply by completing an application. We are FULL for Spring 2021.

Lab Director

Rick O. Gilmore is Professor of Psychology, a Huck Institute of the Life Sciences faculty member, and an Associate of the Institute for Cyberscience. He earned his bachelor’s degree magna cum laude in Cognitive Science from Brown University, and master’s and doctoral degrees in Psychology from Carnegie Mellon University where he participated in the Center for the Neural Basis of Cognition (CNBC) training program in cognitive neuroscience. Gilmore’s research focuses on the development of visual perception and memory. He is particularly interested in the development of brain networks that enable perceivers to extract information about the layout of the environment, the shape of objects, and the speed and direction of self-movement from patterns of visual motion called optic flow. Gilmore is also keenly interested in developing tools and practices that make scientific research more open, transparent, and reproducible. He is co-founder and Co-Director of the Databrary.org data library, and is co-PI on the Play & Learning Across a Year (PLAY) Project. From 2008 to 2014, Gilmore served as the founding Director of Human Imaging at Penn State’s Social, Life, and Engineering Sciences Imaging Center (SLEIC). He has won the College of the Liberal Arts tenure-line faculty teaching award, leads the Open Data in Developmental Science (ODDS) initiative for the Penn State Child Study Center, and has had support for his research from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.

Gilmore has served as president of the Centre Region Bicycle Coalition, the Acoustic Brew Concert Series, and the State College Community Theatre. An active radio amateur or ham (callsign K3ROG), he is member of the Board of Directors of the Nittany Amateur Radio Club and is the faculty adviser and K3CR license trustee for the Penn State Amateur Radio Club.

Contact Information

114 Moore Building
Department of Psychology
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park, PA 16801
814-865-3664, voice
814-863-7002, fax

rogilmore AT-SIGN psu DOT edu

Meeting scheduler

Current Staff

Andrea Seisler, Lab Manager

Andrea R. Seisler is the Laboratory Manager of the Brain Development Laboratory directed by Dr. Rick O. Gilmore. She has also been the Authorizations Specialist at Databrary since November 2016. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering from The Catholic University of America. During her graduate studies, she was a recipient of the Clare Booth Luce Fellowship award.

She completed MRI based neuroscience and orthopedics research while working at The National Institutes of Health from 2001-2007. After her move to State College, she served as an IRB Compliance Coordinator for the Office for Research Protections at Penn State and then moved on in 2009 to manage the Human Electrophysiology Facility located at the Social, Life, and Enginineering Sciences Imaging Center through 2014. She is active in Scouts BSA as a Committee Member in Troop 245 and an Executive Board Member of the Juniata Valley Council, BSA. She completed her Wood Badge leadership training course in September 2020. In addition she enjoys dancing ballet and substitute teaching at Dance Academy.

Contact Information

503 Moore Building
Department of Psychology
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park, PA 16802
ars17 AT-SIGN psu DOT edu

Yiming Qian, Graduate Student

Yiming is a graduate student in the Department of Psychology at PSU. Her research interest is exploring the development of brain networks from early childhood to adulthood, using multimodal neuroimaging tools. She is also interested in the mechanism of visual motion. Here is her schedule for the current research projects.

Besides research activities, Yiming enjoys reading, cooking, gardening, hiking and fishing. She is a big fan of operas and musicals.

Maureen Burke, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Maureen (Maggie) Burke is a member of Pennsylvania State University’s Undergraduate Class of 2022. She is majoring in Psychology with a focus in neuroscience. She is interested in child development, specifically in infancy, and what neurological functions play a role in this. Outside of the lab, she’s involved in THON with experience in the Rules & Regulations Committee. She is also involved with LINKS, a mentorship program offered to students with disabilities, where her duties include to aid them in their classes. She plans on expanding her experience working with adolescence and expanding her research within child development.

Anna Capria, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Anna is a biobehavioral health major. Her research interests include neuroscience, child, and adolescent development. She is also fascinated by how language affects the brain. In addition to her work in this lab, she also works in the Context and Development lab studying neighborhood, family, and school influence on development. After graduation, Anna plans to pursue law school. Outside of academia, she enjoys running, hiking, and cooking. LinkedIn


Yu-Tzu (Rachel Chang), Undergraduate Research Assistant

Rachel is from Taiwan and majoring in Psychology and minoring in Biology. In addition she is also working on the business certificate in Smeal college of business. She is pretty interested in early childhood since it is a critical timing to develop a healthy mind and body. Moreover, she finds it interesting how the brain has such a large capacity but how little we know about the brain. Besides academic interest, she loves dancing and is the president of Bounce Dance Organization here in Penn State. Youtube Instagram


Sara Delmoral, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Sara Delmoral is currently a sophomore at the Pennsylvania State University from Matawan, New Jersey. She is majoring in Biology with a focus in neuroscience with minors in psychology, neuroscience, and Chinese. She is currently secretary of the Biological Science Society and is working as a patient transporter in Jersey Shore University Medical Center. Interested in cognitive and behavioral development, Sara plans to pursue medical school following her graduation in May 2023.

Outside of studies, Sara enjoys baking, exercising, reading, and painting.

Anjali Jivan, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Anjali Jivan is in Pennsylvania State University’s undergraduate class of 2022 and is from Mumbai, India. She is majoring in Psychology with the Life Sciences option with minors in Early Childhood Education, Special Education and Rehabilitation and Human Services. She is involved with the Student Programming Association, THON, and Psi Chi Penn State chapter on campus. She is interested in child and infant psychology, specifically areas that relate to cognitive and behavioral development. Following her undergraduate graduation, she plans to apply to an MD/Ph.D. program and eventually obtain licensure to become a practicing Child Psychologist.

Michelle Mendez, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Michelle Mendez is majoring in Psychology with a concentration in Neuroscience. She is involved in the Student Minority Advisory and Recruitment Team here on campus, and volunteers at Centre County PAWS. She is interested in adolescents, their cognitive development, and how external factors contribute to the determination of their individual personality. She is on a pre-medicine track and plans to apply to an MD/PhD program after graduation in 2021.

Kayla Moninger, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Kayla Moninger is a Penn State student pursuing a degree in Psychology with a Neuroscience focus. She is concurrently following the pre-medicine track with intentions of attending medical school to become a psychiatrist. As a student, she is involved in Boulevard, a community service and THON organization, as well as PSU RAM, which is the Penn State Chapter of this global health-based nonprofit. Aside from this, she volunteers as a counselor advocate at Centre Safe in State College. Her passion toward studying and understanding the intricacies of the brain have led her to this path of research that she plans to continue well into the future.

Sydney Peterson, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Shahir Rayes, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Shahir Rayes is majoring in Biology with a focus on Vertebrate Physiology. He was the President of We Are The World, a club at Penn State that is dedicated to promoting diversity and value students of all backgrounds and beliefs. He also plans to be involved with THON on campus. Shahir is bilingual in both Arabic and English. Some of his hobbies are painting, lifting, and drawing. Shahir plans on going to medical school after graduation.

Kymberle Shields, Undergraduate Research Assistant

Recent Alumni

  • Emily Herman
  • Chelsea Davis
  • Sandy Rayes
  • Luka Kelly
  • Amar Bhatia
  • Zhichun Zhao
  • Sarah Shahriar, Research Assistant, Penn State Hershey
  • Ashton Dluzneski
  • Alyssa Pandos
  • Charmi Mehta
  • Michael Dexheimer
  • Hifzah Malik
  • Raya Willoughby
  • Katie Torres
  • Shivani Patel
  • Michael O’Neill, Graduate student, PSU
  • Daved Fared
  • Auburn Lattanzio, Graduate student, Villanova University
  • Michelle Shade
  • Sam Pai
  • Jun Oh, Apprentice Ruby on Rails Developer, Launch Academy, Inc.
  • Amanda Thomas, Ph.D.
  • William Adamiak, NIH IRTA
  • Shivam Vedak, Medical student
  • Dan Elbich, Graduate student, Penn State
  • Jeremy Fesi, Ph.D., Research Analyst, U.S. Marine Corps
  • Lorena Gonzalez, Graduate student, Penn State
  • Ricky Groner, IT Support Specialist, Huck Institutes of the Life Sciences, Penn State
  • Ken Hwang, Consultant, Anexinet
  • Matthew Lee, MBA student, Penn State
  • Patricia Jones, Optometry student, Pennsylvania College of Optometry