DR. ERIKA FOUNTAIN is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. She earned her Ph.D. in Psychology with a concentration in Human Development and Public Policy from Georgetown University. In her work, she uses both quantitative and qualitative methods and takes an interdisciplinary approach to examine how adolescents and their families navigate the legal systems. Specifically, she incorporates developmental and community psychology, law, and public policy to answer questions about legal decision making, court process, and attorney-client-family relationships. Additionally, Dr. Fountain’s work explores how developmental science is used in developing evidence-based juvenile justice policy. She has presented scientific testimony to Maryland legislators considering policies related to juvenile jurisdiction, confidentiality of records, and legal protections in interrogation. She has co-authored op-eds advocating for developmentally informed reforms to youth justice.
CHRISTINA DUCAT is a second-year PhD student in the Human Services Psychology program on the Community track. Her research focuses on the impact of state violence in the legal system on girls and gender non-conforming youth and the ways which youth resist oppression. She received her bachelor's degrees in Applied Psychology, Global Public Health, and Politics from New York University in 2018. After graduating, she spent several years doing advocacy work and organizing with girls involved with the legal system as well as doing research on the current state of girls' incarceration nationally and collaborating with community organizations to promote youth agency and well-being.
ALLISON LLOYD is a second-year Ph.D. student in the Human Services Psychology program on the Community track. She earned her M.A. in Clinical Psychology at Towson University in 2019. Her current research focuses on trans and gender-expansive youths' perceptions of the police and experiences with school resource officers, and how these perceptions and experiences relate to their wellbeing. Using an intersectional framework, Allison's research also examines how the nuances of race, gender, and socioeconomic status influence how trans and gender-expansive youth interact with law enforcement, inside and outside of school.
SARAH PERALTA is a second-year Ph.D. student in the Human Services Psychology program on the Child-Clinical and Community track. She earned her M.A. in Counseling for Mental Health and Wellness at New York University in 2018. Her research interests are on issues related to grief and bereavement in the United States juvenile and criminal justice system. She has a specific interest in the numerous ways that grief expressions in marginalized communities can become pathologized/penalized. Her goals are to address the need for grief-informed services through collaborative research that is not only community-driven but also critically focused on institutional power and actionable change.
RESEARCH ASSISTANTS & LAB ALUMNI