Meet the Lab

Director


Mitchell EisenMitchell Eisen, Ph.D.
Principal Investigator
Phone/Ext: 323-343-5006
[email protected]
Dr. Mitchell Eisen's CV

Dr. Eisen is Director of the Forensic Psychology Graduate Program here at Cal State L.A. Dr. Eisen serves on the panel of experts for the Los Angeles County Superior Court in the area of eyewitness memory. His teaching interests include psychology and the law, human memory, assessment, and psychopathology.

 

Graduate Students


Monique SwabyMonique Swaby
Graduate Research Assistant

Monique is a second-year M.S. student originally from Toronto, Ontario. In December 2019, Monique graduated Summa Cum Laude with a B.S. in Psychology and a Minor in Criminal Justice from Georgia State University. She was awarded with the Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement (RISE) fellowship as a part of the MORE Program here at Cal State LA. Her areas of interest include juror decision making, risk assessment, and eyewitness memory. Her thesis is titled, "Differences in Racial Identity Predict Same-Race Leniency in Mock Jurors". Currently, she is interning for a clinical psychologist, reviewing client records and completing mental health diversion reports for justice-involved individuals. In Spring 2022, Monique was awarded the 1st Overall Oral Presentation Award at the 30th Annual Student Symposium here at Cal State LA. After getting her master's, Monique will begin her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Southern Illinois University under the supervision of Dr. Robert Morgan. She ultimately hopes to conduct assessments on those involved in the legal system and decrease racial disparities in mental health.

Lauren RistromLauren Ristrom
Graduate Research Assistant

Lauren Ristrom is a 1st-year graduate student, who graduated Summa Cum Laude from Cal State LA in 2021, with a B.A. in Psychology and a minor in Criminal Justice. She joined the Forensic Psychology lab during her senior year of undergraduate studies. She has presented in multiple research symposiums and received an Outstanding Oral Presentation award in Behavioral and Social Sciences I at the 29th annual CSULA research symposium. As an undergraduate, she interned with a child advocate at the Children's Law Center of California, practicing interviewing children in the dependency court. Lauren co-authored a recently published paper on disclosures of sexual and physical abuse among children in repeated forensic interviews. In the future, Lauren plans to apply to a Clinical Ph.D. program and become a child forensic interviewer and psychologist. Lauren's specific interests include suggestibility, eyewitness memory, and child maltreatment.


Teresa Virgen
Graduate Research Assistant

Teresa Virgen originally transferred from East Los Angeles College, where she aided in the effort to recruit potential Chemical Dependency Counsellors as President of the Psychology Club, in 2019. In 2021, she received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with the honor distinction of Summa Cum Laude from California State University, Los Angeles. She is currently a first-year graduate student in the MS Forensic Psychology program and aspires to be a renowned researcher. Her research interests include rehabilitation, reintegration, and recidivism within the criminal justice system.

Laura Huicoy
Graduate Research Assistant

Laura Huicoy is a first-year M.S. student. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from California State University, Los Angeles with a B.A. in Psychology in 2020. Currently, she is enrolled in the M.S. Forensic Psychology Program and is interested in pursuing a research career. Her academic interests are focused on the application of psychology in the criminal justice system and her ultimate goal is to pursue a doctoral degree in Psychology.

 

Spotlights: Graduate Alumnae


Rebecca YingRebecca Ying
Former Graduate Assistant

Rebecca Ying is a former graduate student from Huntington Beach, California. In 2016, she graduated with a B.A. in Psychology and a Minor in Basic Business from California State University, Los Angeles, as a member of both the Honors College and the Early Entrance Program. She joined the Forensic Psychology Lab as a third-year undergraduate. For her senior thesis, she focused on how assessing if imagining both simple and complex events may lead to false memories of those events. During her graduate years, she interned at Decision Analsyis, Inc., a litigation strategy firm based in Los Angeles, CA. Her graduate thesis was titled "Comparing Lineups to Showups in the Field vs. Lab." Currently, Rebecca is a Ph.D. student at Iowa State University under the supervision of Dr. Andrew Smith.

Jennifer JonesJennifer Jones
Former Graduate Assistant
Jennifer Jones's CV

Jennifer Jones is a graduate of the Forensic Psychology M.S. program who is currently a Ph.D. student at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, under the direction of Dr. Margaret Bull Kovera. Jen graduated magna cum laude with a B.A. in Psychology and Minor in Criminal Justice from Cal State Los Angeles in 2018. As an undergraduate, Jen joined the Forensic Psychology lab during her Sophomore year, won several awards for her presentation of our research, and earned special recognition from the Honors College for her thesis assessing how witnesses' personality can affect performance on a showup identification task. As a PhD student, Jen hopes to continue her applied research assessing police and court procedures and influence policy change to help protect the rights of all individuals. Specific areas of interest include lineup and showup administration and admonition procedures, identifying juror bias during the voir dire process, interrogation techniques, and assessing prison rehabilitation programs designed to lower recidivism rates.


T'awna WilliamsT'awna Williams
Former Graduate Assistant
T'awna Williams's CV

T'awna Williams is a graduate of the Forensic Psychology Master’s Program, and she is currently a Ph.D. student at John Jay College of Criminal Justice under the supervision of Dr. Saul Kassin. In 2018, T'awna graduated with Honors in Psychology. Soon after joining the lab as an undergraduate, she was awarded with the Research Initiative for Scientific Enhancement (RISE) fellowship and reawarded as a graduate student. For her undergraduate honors thesis she examined online versus live witness behavior following a social influence prompt. T'awna largely focused on pursuing a doctoral degree studying false confessions. She wishes to pursue a career that aids in preventing wrongful convictions and freeing the innocent. Her other interests include the study of juror decision-making and interrogations.

Marianne LacsamanaMarianne Lacsamana
Former Graduate Assistant
Marianne Lacsamana's CV

Marianne Lacsamana is a former graduate student hailing from San Fernando Valley, California. In 2015, she earned her B.A. in Psychology at the University of San Francisco. She plans on pursuing doctoral studies and ultimately aims to work within law enforcement. Marianne’s interests include a multitude of criminal justice issues including police procedures/law enforcement, and the psychological effects it brings forth to those who encounter the criminal justice system. Her last project included research on how social support effects children’s memory performance during forensic interviews. Her thesis project focused on the social influence of post-identification feedback on eyewitness memory.


Veronica MonarrezVeronica Monarrez
Former Graduate Assistant
Veronica Monarrez's CV

Veronica Monarrez is a former graduate student who graduated Magna Cum Laude from Cal State University, Los Angeles in 2017 and received her B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Criminal Justice. She hopes to continue on to doctoral study to pursue a career in Clinical Forensic Psychology. She volunteered for Kid’s Court which works alongside LA County Probation to help establish competency among juvenile offenders. Veronica did clinical work with neurodivergent children at a therapy center in the San Gabriel Valley. Her research interests include examining different developmental trajectories that lead to criminal offending. She worked on a project examining whether court preparation programs can help enhance resilience in at risk youth who are set to testify in court.

Gabriella CedreGabriella Cedré
Former Graduate Assistant

Gaby Cedré graduated from the M.S. program in 2018 after taking lead on many projects in the Forensic Psychology Lab. During her time as a student here, she coathored papers published in Law and Human Behavior (2018) and Applied Cognitive Psychology (2017). Her Masters thesis argues for the bifurcation of gang evidence by demonstrating how describing a defendant as a gang member could cause jurors to falsely remember previous criminal conduct and convictions that were never introduced during trial. After interning during her second year, Gaby has continued her work as a trial consultant in Los Angeles. She currently works as a Project Manager at Decision Analysis Inc.

 

Spotlights: Lab Alumnae


Charmaine ChuiCharmaine Chui
Former Research Assistant​
Charmaine Chui's CV

Charmaine Chui is a former lab member who graduated with a B.A. in Psychology and a B.S. in Criminal Justice in 2021. She was a member of both the Early Entrance Program and the Honors College. She joined the Forensic Psychology lab in Spring 2018 as a second-year undergraduate and her interests are centered around the ways in which psychology intersects with the legal system. Her honors thesis was titled, "Assessing Individual Differences in Application: Are Some People More Likely to Make False Identifications?" Currently, Charmaine is obtaining her J.D. at Arizona State University.

Diana Fajardo CastellanosDiana Fajardo Castellanos
Former Research Assistant

Diana Fajardo Castellanos is a former graduate student in the MS Forensic Psychology program, and a former research assistant in the Forensic Psychology Lab. She graduated from Cal State Los Angeles with a B.A. in Psychology and a Minor in Criminal Justice in 2019. Her year-long internship with Jail Guitar Doors USA sparked her interest in working with the incarcerated population and at-risk youth. She is also interested in the many ways the criminal justice system affects youth as they age. She hopes to one-day influence policy change regarding sentencing for youth offenders.


Jordyn Mullinax​Jordyn Mullinax
Former Research Assistant
Jordyn Mullinax's CV

Jordyn Mullinax is a former graduate student in the M.S. Forensic Psychology program, and a former research assistant in the Forensic Psychology Lab. Originally from Riverside, California, Jordyn graduated Magna Cum Laude from California State University, San Bernardino in 2018. She volunteered at the Riverside Area Rape Crisis Center as an advocate for sexual assault survivors. She plans to pursue a career as a licenced counselor helding ading survivors of violent crimes and people who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.