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Christina Hopkins Psy’14 Returns to Alma Mater as Adjunct Professor

By Zachary Durham

Published on August 17, 2020

Christina Hopkins Psy’14 University of the Sciences equipped Christina Hopkins Psy’14 with all the tools necessary to move on and be successful in graduate school; now she hopes to do the same for current and future USciences students. Hopkins has returned to her alma mater as an adjunct professor in the psychology department, knowing first-hand the impact that a USciences education can have on students.

“I quickly learned that a psychology degree from USciences was unlike many of my peers’ psychology degrees,” she said during a recent interview. “There’s something about the culture in the USciences psychology department that created the perfect context for our natural curiosity and exploration to emerge, which I think allows its students to thrive.”

Hopkins, a PhD student at Duke University, spent two years after graduation as a clinical research coordinator at University of Pennsylvania, where she was able to take everything she learned during her undergraduate education and apply it to clinical trials in real life.

“I got a lot of clinical experience during my training in the Health Behavior Research Lab at USciences, and was ready on day one to jump into clinical interviews and assessments with patients at University of Pennsylvania,” Hopkins said. “Learning these foundational skills at the undergrad level is transformative because you can build on these skills at each training level as you move forward.”

As a Philadelphia native, Hopkins had heard about positive experiences at USciences, and decided to attend an information session. “Once I was there, I really felt like I had found my people.” Hopkins shares. “I remember Steve Moelter, PhD, sitting on the edge of the desk with a casual attitude and a big brain and I felt really at home and free to be myself, which is not something I had ever felt in an academic setting.”

Hopkins is excited to learn from the faculty in a different capacity, while using her experience as an alum to relate to her students.

“I think being an alumna will provide important context that will shape my experience teaching,” she said “I remember how valuable one-on-one mentorship was, so I hope I can be of service to the students in the same way as they are exploring their own interests.”

Christina Hopkins Psy’14 and Amy Janke, PhDHopkins hopes to emulate the impact that USciences faculty had on her during her time as a student, notably the impact of Amy Janke PhD. “Dr. Janke gets a lot of the credit for who I am professionally. Her Health Psychology course was literally career-defining for me, and my research interests were forged in her lab under her wing.”

Moving forward, Hopkins plans to use her clinical skills to positively influence the Philadelphia community, and her teaching skills to shape the next generation of scientists. “I’d love to start my own clinical practice in Philly that incorporates digital therapy tools and provides access to care for Philadelphians who can’t typically afford mental health treatment.”

No matter where she ends up, Hopkins will always carry what she has learned, and will continue to learn, at USciences with her.

“At Usciences, I was always encouraged to be good, honest, curious, and data-driven, which I try to always carry with me. I am proud of my integrity, my curiosity, and my ability to think critically and find the empirical question in any discussion. USciences provided a space where I could hone those aspects of myself during a crucial period of my development, and I’m proud I’ve managed to hold on to those aspects of myself and my education after graduation.”

Categories: News, Misher College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Behavioral and Social Sciences, Psychology, Alumni, Faculty, Proven Everywhere