Research assistants in the Cognitive Aging Lab are responsible for scheduling participants, administering and scoring cognitive tests, and entering data in spreadsheets.

Graduate Student

Claire La Fleur

Claire La Fleur is currently a third year graduate student studying Cognitive Psychology at University of Virginia. Her work focuses on understanding why cognition changes across the lifespan, the individual differences that may influence those processes, and evaluating potential interventions or strategies that may be beneficial for cognition. She is focusing on understanding the mechanisms underlying the testing effect and examining the relationship between aspects of social support and cognition. When she is not at work, she enjoys playing with her Siamese cats and going wine and cider tasting with her wonderful boyfriend, Ben.

For more information, please visit: cglafleur.com


Summer 2016 Research Assistants

Alice DuCharme

Alice DuCharme is a second year studying History and Media Studies at the University of Virginia. On grounds, she is a member of the University Guide Service and an educator for the University Judiciary Committee. Outside of the university, she enjoys running, traveling, and trying new Charlottesville restaurants.



Kaleigh Pittman

Kaleigh Pittman recently graduated from the University of Virginia with a B.A. in Cognitive Science and Art History, and will be starting at New York University in the fall to pursue a Master of Arts program in Industrial/Organizational Psychology. Her interests focus on applying research and theories in cognition to a business setting, with particular concentration in consulting and training and development. She has previously worked as a Research Assistant in the Dodson Cognition Lab, focusing on working memory and confidence ratings. Outside of the lab, Kaleigh enjoys traveling, exploring Charlottesville, and simply being outside anytime the weather is nice.

Laura Monaghan

Laura Monaghan is currently a third-year undergraduate psychology major and Spanish minor at the University of Virginia. She is on the pre-health track and intends to become a Physician Assistant. She is largely interested in the structure and function of the human brain and has previously served as a Research Assistant in the field of cognitive social psychology. Outside of the lab and classroom, she enjoys long-distance running and trying various Pinterest-inspired recipes.

Laurel Via

Laurel Via is a third year undergraduate at the University of Virginia, studying psychology and sociology. She is also a member of the Psychological Society, Psi Chi, and Sigma Alpha Lambda and a volunteer at the Charlottesville-Albemarle SPCA. After graduation, she plans to attend law school. She enjoys spending time with her friends and family, reading, and playing with her Boxer, Samantha.

Gabrielle Wolfe

Gabrielle Wolfe is a first year undergraduate student who intends to study biology while completing the necessary pre-medicine coursework at the University of Virginia. Appropriately nicknamed “Gabi,” she loves to strike up a conversation with anyone at any time about anything (although she particularly enjoys discussing infectious disease cases, bioethics, and current scientific research). When she is not at work, Gabi can usually be found taking her dog to the park, running, volunteering at the hospital, hiking, camping, or practicing yoga.

Anousheh Bakhti-Suroosh

Anousheh Bakhti-Suroosh is currently a third year undergraduate student studying Cognitive Science and Philosophy at the University of Virginia. She is particularly interested in how our ability to store and associate experiences creates a dynamic, interrelated web called memory that becomes essential to our identity. Additionally, she hopes to explore various therapies to alleviate memory disorders. In her free time, she enjoys seeing live music, hiking, and camping.

Michael Larsen

Michael Larsen is currently a second year psychology and biology major. His particular interests are in neural systems and cognitive processes associated with behavior and socialization. His personal interests are hiking, fishing, skiing, and water-sports.

Rebecca Martin

Rebecca Martin is a second year undergraduate in the College of Arts and Sciences pursuing a Bachelor’s in Biology. She is also highly interested in Psychology and East Asian Studies. At UVA she is also involved in Club Softball, volunteering at Martha Jefferson Hospital through Madison House, tutoring at an elementary school through Cavs and Panthers, and serving as a Peer Leader for General Chemistry. In her free time she enjoys hiking, baking, and finding puppies to play with.

Morgan Lynch

Morgan Lynch recently graduated from the University of Virginia with a B.A. in Cognitive Science with a Neuroscience concentration. She has previously been a RA in the Cognition Lab where she ran a project studying the testing effect. She plans to pursue a graduate degree in the behavioral sciences after taking a couple years to explore her interests in social and cognitive neuroscience and clinical psychology. In the mean time, she enjoys hiking, swimming, going to concerts, and traveling.


Sahithi Konuri

Sahithi Konuri is a third-year in the College of Arts and Sciences majoring in Cognitive Science, with a concentration in Neuroscience. Outside classes, she works part-time as an Organic Chemistry Teaching Assistant and as a Health Administrative intern at the Charlottesville Free Clinic. In her free time, she enjoys writing for her blog, dancing for a Bollywood-fusion team, and playing with her adorable bunny. She started being involved in cognition research her first year and is very excited to work with the local community and the rest of the lab.

Virginia Clemo

Virginia Clemo is currently at third-year majoring in Psychology at the University of Virginia. Her areas of interest are clinical psychology and early child development. She has worked in Program for Anxiety, Cognition, and Treatment laboratory with Professor Teachman and in Professor Patterson’s laboratory looking at sexual orientation and the family. Outside of school, Virginia enjoys napping and trying new ice cream flavors.

Caroline Fowler

Caroline Fowler is a rising third year undergraduate student studying Psychology at the University of Virginia. Her goals are to pursue a career in Clinical or Counseling Psychology after serving in the Peace Corps. In the past she has worked as a swim coach and volunteered in Tanzania as an English tutor. Caroline has a passion for helping others, especially in the field of mental health, and is excited to get more involved in the psychology community. In her spare time, she enjoys working out, going to concerts, and spending time with her friends and family.

Brenda Straka

Brenda Straka is a third year undergraduate student in the College of Arts and Science. She is pursing a double major in Psychology and Cognitive Science as well as a minor in English. Along with the area of cognitive aging, Brenda is also interested in psychological research in social neuroscience as well as audio and visual perception. Additionally, Brenda enjoys playing her viola and spending time with her friends.


Benjamin André

Benjamin André is a third year undergraduate student studying Psychology at the University of Virginia. He is interested in how human perception and cognitive processing change as we grow older, as well as the development of neural pathways across human lifespan. In his spare time, he enjoys performing musical theatre and swing dancing, as well as scuba diving and skiing with his family.



Kelsey Leong

Kelsey Leong is a first year undergraduate who is intending to major in Engineering sciences. She is from Manassas, VA and at UVA she is involved in Beach Club volleyball, Hoos for memory (the club that raises money for Alzheimer’s research) and her sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha.


Stephen Hayes

Stephen Hayes is from Richmond, Virginia. He is a second year student in the College of Arts and Sciences and working towards completing a BS in Biology. After graduation he plans to go to Medical School and aspires to practice surgery one day. At UVA, he is a member of the Virginia Men’s Rowing team. He has also been a peer teacher in UVA’s intro biology lab and spends part of his Fridays volunteering at Martha Jefferson Hospital through UVA’s Madison House.

Mei Pang

Mei Pang is a rising fourth year undergraduate student pursuing a B.S. in Biology hoping to apply to medical school after she graduates. In her free time, Mei likes experimenting with new recipes, making DIYs and binge watching Netflix. She currently researches at the Virginia School of Medicine in the Pathology Department on chimeric RNA in normal cells. She is excited to be researching at the Cognitive Aging Lab this summer!



Dominique Martin

Dominique Martin is a rising fourth year undergraduate student studying Cognitive Science and French at the University of Virginia. During the school year she tutors French and is a research assistant in a Cognition Lab. In her free time she loves to paint and learn new recipes.