Community and DEI

The psychology department is a community that values justice, diversity, free inquiry and equal opportunity. We uphold the importance of civility and mutual understanding, and do not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, national origin, citizenship status, sex, gender, disability, religion, age, veteran status, sexual orientation or any other protected class. 

Learn more about our community, and the ways in which we strive to strengthen it, by exploring the below. 


Student Representatives

The psychology department proudly involves student input through the “Major Representatives” (“Major Reps”) and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Representatives (‘DEI Reps’). 

DEI Reps promote diversity, equity and inclusion in the department. Their roles may include

  • Meeting with the faculty DEI Liaison to generate and carry out DEI-centered actions
  • Discussing student concerns or feedback regarding DEI with the faculty DEI Liaison 
  • Coordinating the Psychology Department Partner Program with the faculty DEI Liaison 
  • Contributing to monthly newsletters that help bring the community together

Meet your 2021-2022 DEI reps: Sarah Phillips (she/her) and Emma Samstein (she/her): Our goal as the DEI Reps this year is to help make the department accessible to every student and to create a sense of community within it that allows each individual to grow and learn. As individuals and learners from diverse backgrounds ourselves, we understand how intentional steps in the right direction can effectively dismantle overt and covert systems of oppression that exist not only in academia but in our society. Therefore, with the help of everyone in the department, we hope to take the first step in changing the way things have always been to the way they should be!

Major Reps liaise between students and faculty, helping to build community in the department. Their roles may include:

  • Talking with current or interested majors/minors about coursework and research in the department
  • Planning gatherings or events that bring the department together
  • Serving as a bridge to liaise between students and faculty
  • Providing input on faculty searches (i.e., possible new hires) and soliciting feedback from students on candidates 

Meet Your 2021-2022 Major Reps

Tanojah Avery (she/her) 
Major: Psychology | Minor: Health Studies 

Hello! I’m very excited to be serving as a major advisor this year. I look forward to getting to know you all. Please know that I am always available for a chat and am happy to be of help however needed! Some fun facts about me: I love to read and can’t seem to stop watching the Bachelor franchises! 

Annie Hawks (she/her) 
Major: Psychology | Minor: Neuroscience 

Hi Everyone! Please feel free to reach out to me at any time. We can chat about classes, thesis, future endeavors, or even your favorite brand of Ramen! Anything you need, please reach out. All the major representatives are here for you! 

Talia Horowitz (she/they) 
Major: Psychology 

Hello all! I'm pursuing a clinical psych track, so if you have any questions on clinical internships, job opportunities, or course opportunities please don't hesitate to reach out! Some fun facts about me are that I’m a big fan of deep-sea documentaries and dogs whose tongues hang out the side of their mouths. Also, please know that it’s okay if you don’t know the exact psychology track you want to pursue or if research scares you a bit because I’ve felt and at times still feel all of this! Think of the Bryn Mawr psych major and minor as a little community—myself and the other major reps care about you all and are here to support you! 

Mahek Shah (she/her) 
Major: Psychology | Minor: Education Studies 

Hi everyone! I am thrilled to be serving as a major advisor this year. My research interests revolve around studying the development of social relationships across the lifespan particularly how self and society shape a person's approach to their relationships and the role of relationships on different life outcomes. Some fun facts about me: I love tea, especially chai; I love wearing prints; and I enjoy taking walks around campus! I am excited to get to know all of you and talk to you about any concerns, questions, problems, comments, happiness, joy, or just anything else—I am here for you and absolutely love hearing from you! 

If you are interested in becoming a Major Rep for the 2022-2023 school year, email the chair of the psychology department, Professor Laurel Peterson (lmpeterson@brynmawr.edu). If you are interested in becoming a DEI Rep for the 2022-2023 school year, email the DEI Faculty Liaison, Professor Ariana Orvell (aorvell@brynmawr.edu). 


Psychology Department Newsletters

Each month, the department sends a newsletter to psychology majors, minors and faculty. The goals of our newsletters are to build a sense of community and connection in the department, highlight our ongoing commitment to DEI work, and consolidate and share information about upcoming events that students may be interested in. 

You can explore our previous newsletters at the links below:


Psychology Partner Program

The Psychology Partner Program is a peer-to-peer program designed to connect students with the goal of fostering inclusion and belonging within the psychology department. It is currently open to psychology minors and majors. 

Students interested in joining the program can indicate that they are looking for guidance navigating the psychology major/minor and/or finding research opportunities (i.e., a ‘mentor-mentee’ relationship); or express a more general interest in connecting with another student who may (or may not) have a similar background or interests. Partnerships can evolve naturally—meeting as often as students would like throughout the year.

If you are interested in joining, please contact the DEI representatives: Prof Ariana Orvell (aorvell@brynmawr.edu), Sarah Phillips (smphillips@brynmawr.edu) and Emma Samstein (esamstein@brynmawr.edu).