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SPAGS Board Bios

Chloe Bliton
Chloe Bliton

President

I am currently in my fifth year in the Pennsylvania State University’s Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program. I am honored to serve on the SPAGS Board for a fourth year. My primary goals as president are to insure that the SPAGS Board is continually representing student interests, creating career-related resources, and engendering opportunities for increased involvement in SPA activities. Broadly speaking, my research interests include the integration of dimensional structure and the dynamic expression of personality pathology over different timescales (e.g., across- and within-situation). Specifically, I am interested in this expression occurring within interpersonal situations. To achieve this integration, accurate conceptualization and assessment of personality pathology is key. In the future, I hope to bring momentary assessments of personality and interpersonal functioning into my research, specifically within the therapeutic process. 

In my free time, however limited, I spend time with my family and friends and train and compete in elite powerlifting.




Jenn Boland

Jenn Boland

President-Elect

My name is Jenn Boland, and I am currently a fifth-year clinical psychology doctoral student at Sam Houston State University, where I work with Dr. Jaime Anderson. I have been a member of SPA since my first year, and I have been attending SPA conferences since 2018. Additionally, I previously ran the SPA Twitter account (@SPA1938) from 2018-2020. My research focuses on dimensional models of personality, clinician bias in the treatment of borderline personality disorder, and associations between personality and social media behaviors. Clinically, my focus leans towards forensic assessment, of which I believe personality assessment instruments can be an important component. Upon the completion of my doctoral studies, I intend to pursue a faculty position that will allow me the ability to continue my personality-focused research, and I intend to build a forensic assessment-oriented private practice over time. When I'm not busy with school, I can usually be found napping, exercising, playing video games, or watching reality tv.



Sharon Nelson

Sharon Nelson

Past-President

Hello! I am currently on internship at the Ann Arbor VA Healthcare System and am completing my PhD through Eastern Michigan University. There I have worked with several mentors, including Steven Huprich, PhD (who currently is on faculty at the University of Detroit Mercy). In September I will begin a postdoctoral fellowship at the National Serious Mental Illness Treatment Research and Evaluation Center, through the Department of Veterans Affairs and the University of Michigan. I am currently wrapping up my fifth (and last!) year as the Editorial Assistant for the Journal of Personality Assessment and have served on the International Society for the Study of Personality Disorder’s (ISSPD) Student Section Congress as a communications officer for the last two years. I have several areas of research interest, including contrasting and integrating models of understanding pathological personality, different diagnostic systems, and thinking about developmental trajectories for individuals struggling with personality issues. In addition, I am interested in assessing integrative models for treating personality pathology, including long-term outcomes of treatment. Recently I have working on ways to assess and utilize levels of personality functioning. In addition, I’m interested in issues of social justice and diversity within the field. As a “non-traditional student” myself, I have a strong commitment towards working on addressing areas of concern for underrepresented student groups, as well as improving opportunities for learning, networking, and promoting a sense of mentorship and guidance for all students. Most recently this has included conducting research on mentoring practices of diverse student groups from award-winning mentors. In my free time I enjoy spending time with my family of rambunctious boys, camping, holding all night research lab writing pajama parties, and the [occasional] prank.
 
Amber Sitz

Amber Sitz

Secretary

My name is Amber, and I am clinical psychology doctoral student at the University of Tulsa. I am from Ohio, however, I am quickly learning how great Tulsa is, and I feel lucky to work alongside my co-lab members, and under the mentorship of Drs. Allan Harkness and John McNulty. Broadly, I am interested in assessing individual differences within the domains of the Personality Psychopathology Five (PSY-5). I enjoy incorporating this field of research into my clinical work and development as a budding clinician. Additionally, I enjoy leadership positions, being involved in organizations, and learning from my peers. Outside of school, I like connecting with friends, attending barre classes, traveling, and watching Netflix.


  

Callie Jowers

Member-At-Large

Callie Jowers is a third-year doctoral student in the Clinical Psychology PhD program at the University of Detroit Mercy.  She is originally from Augusta, Georgia and moved to Detroit, Michigan for her doctorate in 2017.  She obtained a bachelor of arts degree in psychology and a master’s of science degree in psychology with a clinical focus from Augusta University.  She has been involved in several areas of research spanning the subfields of neuroscience to personality and psychotherapy research.  Her interest in personality developed at a young age out of a curiosity about unconscious processes, as well as self and interpersonal functioning.  She is interested in multi-method personality assessment, diagnosis, and the relationship between therapist/patient personality and psychotherapy process and outcome.  Embedded in these interests is also the role of unconscious processes in shaping personality structure and interpersonal functioning.  Outside of her academic and clinical work, she enjoys attending concerts, traveling, trying new restaurants around metro Detroit, and spending time with close friends and colleagues.


  
A.Esin “Essie” Asan

Member-At-Large

"Hello! I am a Clinical Psychology PhD student at Pennsylvania State University. Broadly, my research interests are centered around dimensional conceptualizations of pathological personality and assessment of interpersonal dynamics. I am new to academia, but my current work focuses on validating existing assessment measures of personality traits, and foreign language translations of English-language assessment measures. In the future, I hope to explore ways to use novel techniques in dynamic assessment of personality to help make psychotherapy more effective.

I am originally from Istanbul, Turkey, and moved to the US for college! Beyond academia, I dabble in writing poetry and cross-stitching; definitely a novice at both, but an expert at binge-watching TV shows."


  
Alexandra Halberstadt

Member-At-Large

My name is Alexandra, and I am currently a clinical doctoral student at the Pennsylvania State University working with Dr. Aaron Pincus. My interests broadly center around validating and exploring different aspects of dimensional models of personality disorders. I am interested in how the structure and dynamic processes of personality work together in both adaptive and maladaptive contexts. When I’m not doing research or attending class, I love rock climbing, reading, and musical theatre.

 
Kelci Davis

Member-At-Large

My name is Kelci Davis and I am a member-at-large of SPAGS. I'm currently completing her PhD in Clinical Psychology at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas. I've been working in the realm of personality since I started first began my M.A., and have continued that interest in my current studies. Broadly, my research interests focus on multicultural issues in personality psychopathology and assessment, especially as it pertains to the LGBTQIA+ community. Additionally, I am newly interested in learning therapeutic assessment as a way to bridge counseling and assessment together. In my free time, I care for my beagle with special needs, make candles to raise money for charity, and enjoy both tabletop and video games.!




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Ask your favorite personality assessor what the biggest personality assessment convention is, and he/she will tell you it's the Annual Convention of the Society for Personality Assessment. Ask him/her what the best personality assessment convention is, and he/she will tell you it's the Annual Convention of the Society for Personality Assessment, held every March in a different city.

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Each April, candidates statements and a Ballot for electing new members to the Board of Trustees is made available to Members, Fellows, Life Members or Life Fellows by the Nominations and Elections Committee. The persons elected to the Board take office in September.

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The Society for Personality Assessment YouTube channel offers full-length lectures from past annual conventions and expert speakers in the field of personality assessment. A great resource to expand your knowledge.

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How Therapeutic Assessment Works: Theory and Techniques - Presented by Stephen E. Finn, PhD. In this webinar, Dr. Stephen Finn, the main developer of Therapeutic Assessment, will explain the techniques of TA and how they relate to TA’s underlying theory of client change. This session is particularly suited to those who are new to TA, including graduate students, or who wish to deepen their understanding of its therapeutic mechanisms.

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