Introducing the first years

25 September 2013

Lucas Chang grew up in Potomac, MD and got his undergraduate degree at Cornell in biology, though he turned out to be distributed with a high probability of being found in psychology, math and computer science. At Cornell, he worked with Professor Mike Goldstein on research on how babies' babbling changes as a result of interacting with human social partners and nonhuman agents. He also completed an honors thesis using neural networks to simulate infants' learning of categories such as speech sounds. At UCSD, he plans to work with Professor Gedeon Deák, studying the development of cognition and attention. Outside of the lab, he likes to learn languages and juggle, and he has recently taken up the harmonica.

Chun Chieh Fan hails from Taiwan where he got his medical doctorate degree and trained in psychiatry. While working as an attending psychiatrist, he got a master of science degree in epidemiology, focusing on genetic epidemiology and psychiatric epidemiology. Chun is intrigued by neuro-developmental disorders and their genetic determinants. He has dabbled in both genome-wide association studies of bipolar disorder and also understanding the cognitive phenotypes of schizophrenia. Before coming to UCSD Cog Sci, he worked with a team using diffusion spectrum imaging to explore the brain phenotype of mental disorders in a hope to identify genes associated with brain phenotypes. Currently, Chun is focusing on the pacing of normal brain development and its determinants. When not focusing on the brain, Chun might be found gaming (computer or board) or road biking.

Rose Hendricks is from a small town in southeastern Massachusetts and just finished her undergrad at Vassar College, majoring in Cognitive Science with a focus on language. She has spent time in Daniel Casasanto's Experiences and Cognition Lab (then at the New School for Social Research), investigating tDCS methods for improving syntactic judgments and mental representations of musical keys. She's interested in the broad topics of embodiment and linguistic relativity and hopes to study effects of metaphor on perception and behavior, both in English and cross-linguistically. When not thinking about thinking, she likes learning new things. Recent endeavors have included the harp, Esperanto, and meditation.

Christopher Keown completed his undergraduate in computer science at Indiana University in 2003 and spent the following six years working as a web developer in San Francisco. He completed his masters in computational science at San Diego State University in 2013, where he used computational methods to analyze fMRI data in autism. His current interests are to understand how brain structure and function change with development--and vary among individuals--as well as to examine underlying genetic and epigenetic factors. A parallel interest is in understanding how the brain arose from evolution and self-organization, as well as how we can exploit these means as a form of computation. In his free time, he enjoys eating delicious foods, running, traveling, and learning foreign languages.

Dan Lenzen is originally from Chicago and studied Psychology at Colorado College. After college he worked in Susan Goldin-Meadow’s Lab at the University of Chicago studying gesture in learning situations. He has come to UCSD to work with Seana Coulson to better understand how multimodal communication is perceived and produced. In his free time he likes to play basketball, coach lacrosse, and garden. 

Eunice Lim was born in Seoul, Korea, and moved to the U.S. when she was a sophomore in high school. She attended Berkeley for her undergrad degree in molecular and cell biology as well as environmental sciences before moving to Boston, and she is happy to be returning back to California. After graduation, Eunice became interested in answering questions about cognition and join Prof. Edward Gibson’s psycholinguistics lab at MIT. There, she explored the presence of language-independent generalizations in the structure of communication by looking at cross-linguistic gesture patterns in describing event meanings. At UCSD, she is interested in understanding how language, culture, and cognition are structured and interact. Specifically, she’d like to know how different linguistic conventions influence the way people process and store event knowledge. In her free time, Eunice says that she constantly on a hunt for good dessert places, especially French pastries. 

Though Adam Rule grew up in the great state of Michigan, he forsook the bustle of Ann Arbor for the corn fields of Champaign where he studied Industrial Engineering. His first taste of research came through summer programs at Carnegie Mellon where he explored the social and cognitive implications of human-robot interaction. Wanting more intellectual rigor, he pursued a Masters in Human-computer Interaction at the University of Washington. While in Seattle, Adam helped Amazon study their customers' shopping behavior and designed health information technology for PATH, an international health NGO. At UCSD, Adam hopes to further our understanding of interruption, multi-modal interaction, and autonomous systems. He's also looking forward to rediscovering the sun, which was strangely absent in Seattle. His weekends are filled with running, backpacking, watching soccer, and reading the Economist. Fun Fact: Adam's older and wiser brother is starting a PhD in Neuroscience this year at MIT.