The Team


Tamika Zapolski, PhD is an Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology at Indiana University—Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI). Her research focuses on risk for substance use and other health behaviors among African Americans.

Given limited integrative literature on understanding African American risk for alcohol use and related problems, Dr. Zapolski developed a theoretical model for African American alcohol use that was recently published in Psychological Bulletin. Using this theoretical model and an ecological framework, Dr. Zapolski has expanded on her research to also understand risk/protective for marijuana use among African Americans. Specifically, she is examining the interactive effect of cultural variables (e.g., discrimination, racial socialization, racial identity) on physiological, individual level (e.g., personality, expectancies, perceptions of risk), interpersonal (e.g., parental/peer support, parent/peer substance use, drug use beliefs), and environmental (e.g., access to drugs, school support, neighborhood disorganization) factors to better understand drug choice, course of use and consequences among African American youth and young adult populations.

Dr. Zapolski is currently supported by a K01 training grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) to examine physiological pathways through which discrimination impacts substance use vulnerability among African American youth. She is a co-Director of the newly formed Adolescent Behavioral Health Research Program (BHP), a multidisciplinary team of researchers within Indiana University created to improve the health and wellbeing of teenagers and young adults through research, education, and intervention. She is also a Learning for Early Careers in Addiction & Diversity (LEAD) Program scholar and a mentored scientist with the Center for Translational and Prevention Science (CTAPS). She received her PhD in Clinical Psychology from the University of Kentucky in 2013 and completed her clinical internship at the University of Kentucky Medical Center.



graduate students

Devin Banks, MS is a 6th year doctoral student. Her research aims to prevent disparities related to substance use and sexual risk behavior among the sociodemographically disadvantaged. In particular, she is interested in the etiology of substance use among African Americans and urban youth. Her current research examines 1) cultural and racial differences in substance use and co-use and 2) how cultural factors interact with traditional risk/promotive factors for substance use to influence health outcomes among adolescents. The ultimate goal of her research is to inform and develop preventive interventions that that promote healthier outcomes across the lifespan, especially among racial and ethnic minorities. She is currently on internship at the Charleston Consortium at the Medical University of South Carolina/Charleston VA Medical Center.


Alia Rowe, MS is a 4th year doctoral student in the PRISM lab. Alia’s research interests concern substance use among underrepresented and understudied populations. Specifically, she is interested in examining how interventions and prevention programming can be tailored to better serve individuals of various racial, ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds. She aims to address gaps in the literature concerning the treatment and prevention of substance use and dependence among vulnerable minority and young veteran populations.


Richelle Clifton, BS is a 3rd year doctoral student in the PRISM lab. Her research interests include examining how physical and psychological health are affected by race, sex, class, and positioning within culture and society. She is interested in contributing to the body of research that aims to reduce the disparities faced by youth, minorities, and other under-served populations through early assessment and intervention. In particular, Richelle aims to address gaps in the literature relating to stigmas and self-stigmas that minority populations face, and how these stigmas affect health and health beahvior.

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Shirin Khazvand, BA is a 2nd year doctoral student in the PRISM lab. Her research interests include investigating maladaptive coping and factors that contribute to engaging in risk behaviors among adolescents. She is interested in examining and improving prevention and intervention programs and tailoring them to better serve underrepresented populations. 




Kenzie Whitener, BA is the Clinical Study Technician, Project Manager, and point of contact for the “Going 4 Goals” or DBT-A research study through the PRISM lab. She oversees data collection, organization of program materials and group assembly, and partnership recruitment. Kenzie has a background in adolescent life skills training, behavior management, and special education. Her research interests include integrating mental health support in school settings and improving access to care in rural communities. 



Undergraduate Students


Ian Carson is a junior psychology major and honors college student at IUPUI. He is interested in diversity issues in clinical psychology, particularly how implicit bias affects different facets of psychotherapy and how cultural competency training can reduce the negative effects of this bias. He hopes to gain the analytical and procedural skills necessary to attend graduate school and become a clinical psychologist.


Adam Barnhill is a junior psychology major and honors college student. Adam is particularly interested in mood disorders, phobias, ADHD, and addiction as well as treatment for these mental health issues, especially through the use of cognitive-behavioral therapy. In the PRISM Lab, he hopes to gain firsthand experience researching addiction, as well as the skills and knowledge necessary to attend graduate school for clinical psychology.


Jenna Harvey is a senior undergraduate psychology student. Jenna is highly interested in the formation of addiction with different substances. She anticipates to continue on to graduate school to specialize in addiction and mental health treatment. She is interested in continuing to researching different SSRI drug treatment therapies as well as CBT/DBT Counseling. Jenna is particularly interested in schizophrenia and substance induced psychosis.


Natisha Pabla is a junior at IUPUI majoring in Psychology while being pre-Med and pre-PA. She is interested in research regarding addiction, work place bias, substance abuse, and mental health particularly in minority populations. Natisha is especially interested in addiction patterns across different cultures and establishing successful preventative methods and providing education about the topic. She hopes to learn more about addiction as well as gain experience, knowledge, and skills for graduate school and hopefully for her own future research.

Skya Rogers is a junior at IUPUI majoring in psychology with a minor in community health. Her main interest is abnormal psychology and addiction. Particularly, intervention and counseling. She hopes to gain first hand experience working with data sets from various research projects, and to gain skills necessary for success in graduate school.

Tong Meng is a senior at IUPUI majoring in Psychology. She is interested in the prevention and treatment of mental health issues and substance abuse. She is also interested in cognition, particularly in sleeping, dreaming, and memory. She hopes to practice and gain research experience in this lab, and prepare for graduate school.


Abigail Wainman is a senior undergraduate psychology student. She is also minoring in sociology and health education. Abigail is very interested in mood disorders and addiction and how the two contribute to each other. While working in the research lab, she hopes to gain the necessary skills and knowledge to attend graduate school for mental health counseling.


Yewande Adetokunbo is a junior undergraduate Psychology major with a minor in Healthcare Administration. She is interested in research involved with psychotic disorders, such as delusional disorder, in adolescence. Specifically she would like to explore the effects of socioeconomic factors on the overall health of adolescence in minority groups. Through the PRISM lab, she hopes to gain more knowledge and understanding within research and experimental studies.


Naeema Patel


Previous StudentS


  • Queenisha Crichlow, Doctoral Student, Clinical Psychology, University of Alabama at Birmingham


  • Micah Faidley, Doctoral Student, Human Development & Family Studies, University of Wisconsin-Madison

  • Taylor Pemberton

  • Peyton Carroll

  • Rachel Jackson


  • Rahissa Winningham

  • Marcy Beutlich, Doctoral Student, Clinical Psychology, Howard University