Graduate Students

Min-Jeong Yang

Min-Jeong YangI am a sixth-year doctoral student in the clinical psychology doctoral program. Prior to joining the lab, I worked as a clinical psychology resident in the Department of Psychiatry at Samsung Medical Center, Korea for three years after earning my MA degree in Clinical Neuropsychology at Seoul National University, Korea. I am currently on my predoctoral internship at the University of Central Florida. My main interest lies in the biological, affective, and cognitive features of impulsivity in individuals with substance abuse and comorbid psychiatric disorders. Specifically, I have been working on multiple research projects on the affect regulation, executive function, implicit bias, and psychophysiology among cigarette smoking and alcohol using populations. My clinical training has focused on evidence-based treatments including CBT focusing on exposure therapy, motivational interviewing, and DBT skills in the integrated behavioral health in primary care and randomized clinical trials targeting alcohol and nicotine use.

Allison Borges

Allison BorgesI am a sixth-year doctoral student in the clinical psychology program at Rutgers University working with Dr. Teresa Leyro and Dr. Edward Selby of the Emotion and Psychopathology Lab. Prior to graduate school, I received my B.A. in Psychology and Neuroscience from Boston University. My research examines the role of transdiagnostic cognitive-affective vulnerabilities in the maintenance of substance use. I utilize a multi-method approach in my work to examine the reinforcing properties of cigarettes. I hope to inform treatment development and implementation through my research.

Mark Versella

Mark VersellaI am a 5th year graduate student in the Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, studying under the direction of Dr. Teresa Leyro. Previously, I received my B.A.H and M.S at Villanova University. My research interests primarily are in examining the comparative effects of nicotine delivery systems (e.g., electronic cigarettes), specifically focused on factors that maintain addiction (e.g., withdrawal). In addition, I am interested in understanding factors that predict differential treatment response in nicotine use, the interaction between anxiety and anxiety relevant processes, substance use disorders, and evidence-based treatment for anxiety. In addition, I also have a strong clinical interest in behavioral medicine.

Hannah Brinkman

I am a 1st year graduate student in the Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, studying under the direction of Dr. Teresa Leyro. My interests include studying mechanisms related to the etiology and maintenance of comorbid substance use and psychiatric disorders. I am particularly interested in examining the role of affective vulnerabilities in perpetuating maladaptive coping behaviors with consideration for how stressful life experiences can moderate this relationship and influence an individual’s response to treatment interventions. My passion for this area of study stems from an array of clinical and research opportunities I pursued throughout my undergraduate academic career at Umass Amherst and post-baccalaureate employment experiences at Fordham University and the Mount Sinai School of Medicine’s Trauma and Resilience Program.

Affective and Biological Underpinnings of Substance Use and Anxiety (ABUSA) Lab | Fax: 732-445-0036


Department of Psychology | Rutgers | The State University of New Jersey | Phone: 848-445-2272