Lab Director

Prof. Brooke Ammerman is the director of the ASSIST Lab at the University of Notre Dame. She received her B.S. from North Dakota State University, M.A. from University of Northern Iowa, and Ph.D. from Temple University. She is most interested in better understanding the mechanisms underlying non-suicidal self-injury and suicidal thoughts and behaviors, and how to translate what we learn in the laboratory to the “real world.” She has a specific interest in how interpersonal stress can influence the onset and maintenance of these epxeriences. When not at work, Prof. Ammerman enjoys running, exploring and photographing the outdoors, and spending time with her family, including her dog and two cats. For more information on Prof. Ammerman's research, see her CV (Ammerman Cv Feb20). She can be reached at 

Graduate Students

Caitlin O'Loughlin is a second year student in the ASSIST Lab. She received her B.A. from the University of Notre Dame and completed a post-baccalaureate research fellowship at Drexel University’s Center City Clinic for Behavioral Medicine prior to attending graduate school. Caitlin’s research interests broadly focus on interpersonal factors associated with suicidality, NSSI, and other risky behaviors. She is particularly interested in the relationship between stigma and risky behavior engagement, as well as exploring the predictors and aftermath of disclosing highly-stigmatized behaviors or diagnoses to others. In her free time, Caitlin enjoys spending time with her family and being outside.

Yeonsoo Park is a second year year student in the ASSIST Lab. He graduated from New York University with a BA in Psychology and earned a MA in Counseling & Clinical Psychology from Sogang University in Seoul, Korea. Yeonsoo’s research interest is in the broad range of self-injurious behaviors (i.e., non-suicidal self-injury, suicide) with a focus on identifying their risk factors. More specifically, he is interested in how emotion and cognition interact to increase one’s risk, and how intrapersonal and cultural factors influence their manifestation. During his free time, Yeonsoo enjoys spending quality time with friends, playing sports, and listening to music.

Research Assistants

Lara Castellino is a senior at Notre Dame. She is majoring in Neuroscience and Behavior with a minor in Business Economics. An international student from India, her research interest lies in the manifestation of suicide and NSSI in different psychological disorders and their prediction. In her free time, Lara enjoys walking around the lakes and spending time with her friends.

Sara Wallander. Originally from Indianapolis, Sara Wallander is a sophomore at Notre Dame. She is a Neuroscience and Behavior major in the College of Science. She is particularly interested in applying the biopsychosocial model to different mental illnesses. Outside of academics, Sara enjoys spending time outdoors and with friends.

Rachel Glein is a senior at Notre Dame. She is majoring in Science-Business with a minor in History. She intends on going to medical school a year after graduation and hopes to work at a medical devices company or do research during her gap year. She is very interested in the field of psychology, specifically in research regarding mental health and prevention of self-injurious behaviors. In her free time, Rachel enjoys hiking, swimming, playing basketball, painting, listening to music, and spending quality time with her friends.

Rebecca Hammond is a junior at Notre Dame. She is majoring in Neuroscience and Behavior. She is interested in the field of psychology and specifically how to improve patient's overall well-being. Rebecca plans to attend medical school after graduation and hopes to eventually work in a primary care setting. 

Keely Thornton is a junior research assistant in the ASSIST Lab. She is currently majoring in neuroscience on the pre-med track with a minor in musical theater. After graduation, she hopes to either attend medical school to specialize in psychiatry or attend graduate school for clinical psychology. Keely’s research interests lie in suicidality among secondary to university level students and what prevention techniques produce the best outcomes for these students. Outside of academics, she enjoys theatre and hanging out with friends and family.

Evan McKenna is a sophomore at Notre Dame majoring in Psychology and English with a minor in Science, Technology, and Values. Hailing from East Tennessee, he hopes to attend graduate school for clinical psychology and to help improve mental health resources in the rural South. Outside of academics, Evan enjoys reading and writing fiction, running, and singing with the Notre Dame Liturgical Choir.