Ph.D. Students

Diana Diaków

1st year School Psychology PhD student

Diana Diaków is a first year School Psychology doctoral student under the mentorship of Dr. Anisa Goforth. She comes from Nowogród Bobrzański, a small town in the western part of Poland. She completed a Magister degree (M.A.) in Psychology, which involved five years of studying, with a focus in Applied Developmental Psychology at Kazimierz Wielki University in Bydgoszcz, Poland. In the meantime, Diana also obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Applied Linguistics with a specialization in English and Arabic. Her Master’s thesis focused on the effects of positive mood on the English vocabulary memorization.  For her Bachelor’s project, Diana investigated the vocabulary learning strategies among Arab learners of English. She also examined the implicit prejudices towards Arabs among Polish society. Her research interests include the acculturation and psychological adjustment among Arab children and youths, education in emergencies and post-conflict situations, and emotion-cognition interactions in the second language acquisition. Diana has gathered her clinical and educational experiences in a number of NGOs and schools in Poland, Slovakia, Ireland, Croatia, and Indonesia. She worked with children with ASD, youths at risk, youths addicted to drugs, children who experienced sexual trauma, foster families, and ELLs. Apart from psychology, she loves everything that is related to Iceland! She is also a big fan of documentary movies. Besides that, Diana is a linguaphile – she speaks six languages and craves more! To recharge her mental-batteries, she practices Ashtanga yoga and goes hiking.

Diana Diakow

Emily Hattouni

1st year School Psychology PhD student

Emily Hattouni is a first year doctoral student in the School Psychology Program working under the advisement of Dr. Jacqueline Brown. She grew up in a suburb of Minneapolis, Minnesota before earning a B.S. degree in Psychology from the University of South Dakota. She loves to travel, and moving to Montana has already allowed her opportunities to go hiking, rock climb, and practice yoga. During her undergraduate degree, she completed an Honors thesis that sparked her research interest in the applications of mindfulness. Specifically, she is interested in mindfulness and other interventions related to positive psychology applied within an ecological framework of the education system. During her undergraduate she was involved in an array of student organizations, including leadership roles in the book club and sustainability club. She now volunteers for a local afterschool program helping fourth and fifth graders with math and science.

Emily Hattouni

Samantha Russell, M.A.

2nd year School Psychology PhD student

Samantha Russell is a second year doctoral student in the School Psychology program under the mentorship of Dr. Jacqueline Brown. Samantha was raised in the mountains of Colorado, then completed her undergraduate education in California and Nevada. After graduating with a B.A. degree in Psychology, Sam was intensely interested in traveling to explore new places, so she did just that. Ultimately, the exploration lead to a deeper interest in psychology as a profession. She returned to school in Flagstaff, AZ to complete an M.A. degree in Psychology with a focus in clinical health. For her master’s thesis research, she traveled to the small island country of the Republic of Palau, wherein she worked with youth and their families to develop a healthy lifestyle program under the guidance of her master’s mentor. This cross cultural experience, combined with working with high school aged youth, sparked her desire to pursue a PhD in School Psychology. The University of Montana was an obvious choice! Sam’s research interests include methods of prevention and intervention related to mental health issues in school based settings, including resiliency among adolescents, effective ways of encouraging positive health behavior and cross cultural school psychology perspectives. When Sam is not buried in the books, you can find her running up and down peaks, climbing rocks, snowboarding, practicing all types of yoga or cooking with her partner, Jeff, in their tiny kitchen. 

Samantha Russell

Olivia Holter

3rd year School Psychology PhD student

Olivia Holter is a third year School Psychology doctoral student under the mentorship of Dr. Anisa Goforth. Olivia is a fifth generation University of Montana graduate. Olivia’s passion for psychology, diversity, and education stems from her 6+ years working with Seeds of Peace, an international NGO which aims to bring together students from regions of conflict to talk about the problems that surround them and provide leadership opportunities. Olivia’s first solo research experience focused on the educational experiences of LGBT students in Montana. Olivia hopes to continue researching diversity within an educational setting, and is so excited at the multitude of opportunities that being a part of the School Psychology PhD program has to offer. In her spare time, Olivia is an adrenaline person– she loves to run, scramble to the tops of mountains, and ski. 

Holter

Miriam Rose Baker, M.A.

5th year School Psychology Ph.D. student

Email: miriam.rosebaker@umontana.edu

Miriam is in her fifth year in the School Psychology Doctoral Program. She is originally from the east coast and received a BA in Neuroscience from Middlebury College. Miriam works in the Machek lab, and her research interests involve relational bullying and early-life stress. Outside of school, Miriam likes to cook, play with her complicated camera, and go country swing dancing. On Monday and Wednesday nights, Miriam can be found at the gym for Zumba class.

Miriam Rose Baker

Zachary Shindorf

5th year School Psychology Ph.D. student

Email: zachary.shindorf@umontana.edu

Zach is a doctoral student in the school psychology program at the University of Montana, working with Dr. Anisa Goforth. Zach’s primary research interests lie in the examination of the school-to-prison pipeline and minority overrepresentation in the juvenile justice system. Zach also has a strong interest in the social skills building of children and adolescents diagnosed with autism. Zach’s practicum experiences include the providing of individual therapy to children and adolescents, consulting with educational professionals, and the utilization of various assessment techniques. Prior to graduate school, Zach has attended Miami University in his home state of Ohio where he majored in psychology and minored in criminology, while also working at a suicide hotline. During his undergraduate career he was a member of a social fraternity and was a co-founder of a student organization. In Zach’s free time he enjoys hiking, floating, intramural sports, photography, and watching movies.

Zachary Shindorf