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2018 Promising Scholars & Advocates

2018 Promising Scholars & Advocates Award Recipients

Life Paths Research Center offered six travel scholarships for scholars and advocates for presentations that focus on under-served or disadvantaged communities.
Four Life Paths Promising Scholars and two Promising Advocates were named for ResilienceCon 2018. We are proud to announce the 2018 recipients of the Life Paths Promising Scholar Awards, and are excited for more promising scholars and advocates in 2019!

Life Paths Promising Scholars

Marie Artap

A Filipina woman with long black hair, looking into the camera with a serious expression wearing a black blouse.

Marie Joyce Artap is a sometimes wannabe aspiring Filipina scholar, writer, and community organizer, born in Oakland and mostly raised in the suburbs of Los Angeles. She did her undergraduate at UC Berkeley, and is currently an M.Ed. student at Vanderbilt Peabody College, where she thinks about schooling and education from a critical theories framework. Some of her research interests in education include coloniality and colonialism, critical race and Whiteness studies, neoliberalism, intersectionality, and critical pedagogy and praxis. She hopes her current and future endeavors will center justice through collective power and liberatory praxis.


Amanda Hasselle

A white woman smiling with shoulder length, brown hair, wearing a coral blazer and white blouse.

Amanda J. Hasselle, M.S., is a third-year student in the Clinical Psychology doctoral program at the University of Memphis. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Trinity University. Her research interests include understanding the roles of personal and environmental factors in promoting resilience in the face of childhood adversity and using that understanding to develop and evaluate interventions aimed at enhancing resilience among children deemed “at-risk” for impaired social, cognitive, and emotional functioning.


Alexis Kopkowski

A white woman with curly, strawberry blonde hair and rectangular glasses smiling, wearing a green blouse.

Alexis has an educational background in public health, applied indigenous health studies (B.S. 2012) and library and information science (M.A. 2014) and is currently a PhD student in American Indian Studies and Public Health (2018). Alexis has worked as a research specialist on a sexual violence prevention grant and has completed two internships; one with the Native American Cancer Partnership and one focusing on community based participatory research. Her research areas of interest include: social justice issues, environmental justice, resilience, and program evaluation.


Xiafei Wang

An Asian woman smiling with shoulder-length, black hair and bangs, wearing black glasses, a white blouse, and grey blazer.

Xiafei Wang received her BA in social work from Peking University and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Ohio State University College of Social Work. Wang’s research interests focus on children and adolescent behavioral and mental health problems in an ecological perspective, with special attention to family process and neighborhood environment. Xiafei is using a mixed-methods design for her dissertation research advised by Dr. Mo Yee Lee to explore intergenerational trauma transmission and post-traumatic growth. Specifically, how parents’ adverse childhood experiences influence the child’s behavioral and emotional outcomes, via the pathways of parental affect regulation and reflective functioning, and how therapeutic process can promote post-traumatic growth for parents who experienced childhood adversity. Xiafei Wang’s published research related to the influences of family-level factors and neighborhood environment on child behavioral health, and the resources that can be used to promote post-traumatic growth for individuals who experienced trauma.


Life Paths Promising Advocates

Paloma Baldovinos

A Latina with shoulder length, curly black hair smiling with black-framed glasses and a yellow blouse.

Paloma Baldovinos serves as a Family Advocate with Caminar Latino, a non-profit domestic violence program for Latino families. She has been involved with Caminar Latino’s youth program for almost 2 years and uses her experiences as a youth witness of violence to help other children. Prior to joining Caminar Latino’s youth program, Paloma worked with youth as a program coordinator and facilitator for a family centered religious education program as well as mentor and tutor to youth in her community. Her main areas of interest are violence prevention with youth, leadership and personal development, and community engagement. Paloma was originally born in California and raised in Georgia.


Kathryn Thomas

A white woman with auburn hair smiling and wearing a blue blouse.

Kathryn Thomas is the Executive Director of Yoga 4 Change as well as the CEO of ANAMAR Environmental Consulting, Inc. After being medically separated from the United States Navy in which she served as a Naval Aviator, she began studying to become a Yoga teacher through the Yoga School of Kailua. Upon moving to Jacksonville, Florida, she witnessed the need for mental, emotional, and physical healing in her new community and started Yoga 4 Change to fill this void. Kathryn has training in multiple disciplines including Power Yoga, Chair Yoga, Hatha Yoga, and Yoga Nidra. She is a 500 E-RYT as well as a Certified Baptiste Teacher. Kathryn formerly sat on the board of the Yoga Service Council, where she served as the project manager and contributed to two of the Best Practice Book Series: Yoga with Veterans, and Yoga in the Criminal Justice System. In her new role as the CEO of ANAMAR, Kathryn is focusing on the business development of the company, while taking the administrative duties off the shoulders of the technical staff. She started this role late in 2017, and is excited to expand the companies reach in the coming year. Kathryn resides in Florida with her husband, daughter and their 2 Labrador Retrievers.