Carla Villacís

Graduate Research Assistant

Carla Villacis is a first year student in the MA Experimental Psychology Program at Rutgers University–Camden. She obtained a B.A. in Romance Languages from Bowdoin College, where she also studied Psychology. Carla has applied her language skills through experiences teaching abroad and in translation services, including clinical evaluations. Most recently, Carla worked in behavioral health implementing clinical interventions in schools and clients homes. She supports the strengthening family Initiative by studying its impact on involved families.

David Cruz

Project Assistant

David Cruz is a first-year student in the MA Criminal Justice Program at Rutgers University-Camden where he also earned his BA in Criminal Justice and Religion in 2017. David will be working with the Cumberland County Positive Youth Development Coalition. The Coalition develops strategies for decreasing juvenile delinquency and is part of the Municipal Prevention Planning Initiative that is funded by New Jersey’s State Attorney’s Office. In 2017 David was a recipient of the ¡Adelante V! Hispanic Heritage and Multicultural Celebration Award, presented by DH/Perfil Latino TV, Inc. for diligent commitment and dedication to serving the South Jersey community and for academic achievement as a successful youth leader and supporter of Hispanic initiatives.

During his undergraduate career, David has conducted research within Philadelphia prisons and has worked with the Pennsylvania Innocence Project. At the Municipal level, David has worked for the Camden Redevelopment Agency, where he primarily focused on Area-Wide Planning efforts in the Mt. Ephraim Choice Neighborhood of Camden. The AWP project focused on Brownfields that are a major impediment for the redevelopment of the city. David’s academic interests include Human Trafficking, Intimate Partner Violence, and Immigration. 

Elijah Sumners

Research Assistant

Elijah is a senior at Rutgers studying Political Science with a double minor in Africana Studies and Writing. In the Summer of 2017 he helped develop an educational nonprofit based in Trenton called HomeWorks, an after school boarding program for underserved girls in the city and currently serves as Director of Community Outreach. He enjoys helping others, soccer, and writing.

Foxx-Parham, Bryana

Office Assistant

Bryana Foxx-Parham is a freshman in Rutgers University–Camden majoring in Business Management. She is working on South Jersey statistics on unemployment and poverty to find ways to help the community.


Jocelyn Mosman

Research Assistant

Jocelyn is a law student at Rutgers University–Camden. Originally from Texas, she moved to the north to originally purse her Bachelor’s degree at Mount Holyoke College in English and Politics. She plans to pursue a career in international human rights and immigration law. She hopes to one day work as an advocate for refugees in Europe. In her spare time, she enjoys writing and performing poetry.

John Crowell

Graduate Assistant

John Crowell serves as a Graduate Assistant for the Pascale Sykes Foundation’s South Jersey Strengthening Families Initiative.  One area of focus within the Initiative is reducing recidivism through family strengthening and he is seeking to understand how children of incarcerated parents perceive jail and the criminal justice system. The results of this investigation have the potential to inform family processes and, specifically, how family advocates may best provide informal social supports for children and families with an incarcerated parent.

John received his B.A. in Psychology from Arcadia University and is currently pursuing his M.A. in Experimental Psychology from Rutgers University.  His research interests, in cognitive psychology, include automatic thought and emotion regulation. John also serves as a Research Assistant in the Emotions Lab, which is directed by Dr. Ira Roseman.  After graduation, John intends to pursue his Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology.

John Pinsky

Graduate Research Assistant

John Pinsky (Jack to his friends) is a graduate student pursuing his Master of Arts in Psychology at Rutgers University – Camden. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at Franklin and Marshall College where he mentored undeserved youth at the local high school throughout his four years there. He also has experience working with and conducting research regarding adolescents with special needs. At the Walter Rand Institute, he works as a Research Assistant concentrating on data collection and analysis as part of the FAMCO team. In the future, he hopes to apply his skills as a researcher and clinician to his own practice as a psychologist.

Remi Leibovic

Web Assistant

Remi Leibovic is the new WRI web assistant, helping bring design to the Walter Rand Institute. She is a senior year Undergraduate Graphic Design and Digital Studies dual major. In addition, she holds an associates degree in Computer Animation and Applied Science from Bergen Community College. Also, she is an active member in the campus community, being apart of different clubs and organizations. The Annual Report layout is being designed by her and other print related projects. 

Sarah Filippi-Field

Project Assistant

Sarah is studying Urban Studies and is in her second semester at Rutgers-Camden.  She primarily works with the Bridgeton Break Out Group as a Project Assistant and hopes to pursue her Master’s in Public Administration after finishing her undergraduate degree. During high school, Sarah served as a Youth Representative on the Cumberland County Positive Youth Development Coalition (CCPYDC) and was an active member of the Vineland Break Out Group. 

Shibin Yan

Graduate Assistant

Shibin Yan is a first year PhD student in Rutgers University—Camden majoring in public affairs and community development.  He serves to analyze the statistics of South Jersey and assists faculty fallow to conduct the research on housing and related services for the homeless. He used to work for a think tank in China for two years to secure professional experience and training in public policy analysis. After graduation, he intend to work as research consultant after graduation.

Kristen Kelly 

Research Assistant 

Kristin Kelly is a first year student in the MA Experimental Psychology program at Rutgers University – Camden. She received her BA in Psychology and Women’s Studies from the University of Delaware in 2017. At the Walter Rand Institute, she serves as a Graduate Research Assistant to the South Jersey Strengthening Families Initiative.

Her research interests include social and health psychology, especially with gender/social roles, body image and eating disorders, women in the workplace, and feminist psychology. She also works under Dr. Charlotte Markey in the Healthy Developments Lab at Rutgers University – Camden. In the future, Kristin is interested in pursuing a doctoral program in social psychology.