Lab Director


​Dr. Finch is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She received her Ph.D. in Developmental and Psychological Sciences from Stanford University's Graduate School of Education.


Her research explores how contextual factors influence children’s early development. Specifically, her work focuses on the development of children’s self-regulation and motivation in home and school environments. Her past work has examined how family risk factors are linked to the development of children’s executive functions and social-emotional skills in both domestic and international settings. Currently, Dr. Finch is exploring how interactions with teachers and peers can support executive function development in early and middle childhood.

Office: Burnett Hall 223 Email: Download: CV

Dr. Jenna E. Finch

Graduate Research Assistant

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Kimia is a first year graduate student in the Developmental Psychology program at UNL. She graduated from the University of California, Irvine with a Bachelor's degree in Psychology in 2016. After earning her degree, Kimia went on to complete the post-baccalaureate research program in Psychology and Social Behavior at the University of California, Irvine and worked as a lab manager in the Working Memory and Plasticity Lab. At UNL, Kimia is interested in studying the development of executive functions in early childhood and creating interventions to promote these skills within the classroom. 

Kimia Akhavein

Lab Manager


Emily just completed her psychology degree at Northwestern College in Orange City, Iowa. In her research there, she explored the effects of smartphone-based mindfulness meditation on emotion regulation and conducted research on the role of family socialization in the development of emotion regulation strategies. After earning her degree, Emily worked with Dr. Brian Wymbs at an NSF REU in Ohio, doing treatment-related research for youth with social, emotional, and behavioral problems. Emily hopes to one day pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology. Some of her favorite activities involve creating Spotify playlists, playing board games, listening to podcasts, going on long road trips, and camping with friends and family.

Emily Starr

Undergraduate Research Assistants

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Elizabeth is currently an undergraduate student from Kansas City, Missouri who is majoring in Psychology, with minors in Leadership and Communication and Child, Youth, and Family studies. After graduation Elizabeth hopes to pursue a career in Clinical Child Psychology! She currently works as a Family Support Worker here in Lincoln, and is involved in many other organizations on campus. Her research interests include child development, and basically anything involving kids! When she isn’t working on research or studying for classes, she enjoys painting, spending time with her friends and family, and traveling!

Elizabeth Hamik

Undergraduate Research Assistants

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Amyia is an undergraduate student majoring in Psychology with minors in Communications Studies and Child, Youth and Families Studies. She is an Omaha, Nebraska native and has always had a deep love for the Huskers! When Amyia was six years old, her parents had her youngest sister that was later diagnosed with autism. The methods of her sister’s therapists amaze Amyia because she sees a vast difference in her sister’s behavior and social skills each year. Her experiences are why she plans to pursue a Doctorate in Developmental Psychology in the future. Recently, she became a McNair scholar and a UCARE recipient, and she cannot wait to research to show her findings! In her free time, Amyia loves spending time with her loved ones, baking, doing hair and makeup, and finding new books to read.

Amyia Harris

Undergraduate Research Assistants

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Alysha is majoring in Communication Sciences and Disorders with an emphasis in speech-language pathology and an education minor. After graduating, she plans to pursue a masters degree in speech-language pathology and work in a school or children's hospital. Alysha is a recent recipient of the Girl Scout Gold Award. On campus, she is involved in the National Student Speech-Language Hearing Association, Animal Impact Club and is a student in the honors program. When not studying, Alysha enjoys spending time with friends and family, reading, watching YouTube and playing board or card games. 

Alysha Henrichs

Undergraduate Research Assistants

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Rachelle is from Eden Prairie, Minnesota. She is a Psychology major with minors in Humanities of Medicine and Child, Youth, and Family Studies. Rachelle has goals of pursuing a Ph.D. in developmental psychology, with a focus on learning disabilities. She is currently completing a UCARE independent research project, studying mindset in second graders with learning disabilities. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, hanging out with friends, and exploring new places.

Rachelle Johnson

Undergraduate Research Assistants


Sara is a senior psychology major at Union College. She is from Clovis, California but is enjoying the Nebraska life! After college, Sara hopes to earn her doctorate in School Psychology with an emphasis in early childhood. Her goal is to work as a psychologist both in a school and in a private practice. She currently teaches preschool part time and leads her college’s chapter of Active Minds, an organization that aims to erase stigmas surrounding mental health on college campuses. In her free time, she enjoys reading, yoga, and spending time with her friends and fiancé.  

Sara Kemp

Undergraduate Research Assistants

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Sophia is an undergraduate student majoring in Global Studies and Psychology with a minor in Asian Studies. She is a member of the Honors Program Student Advisory Board as well as the College of Arts & Sciences Inquire program. After graduation, Sophia plans to attend graduate school and pursue a career involving international education and development. In her free time, she enjoys reading poetry, listening to musical soundtracks, and trying new foods.

Sophia Lanphier

Undergraduate Research Assistants


Nate is an undergraduate from Omaha, Nebraska majoring in Psychology and with a minor in Conflict & Conflict Resolution. He would like to pursue a Master’s in Psychology and work in the field of Behavioral or Developmental Psychology. Nate enjoys playing soccer, watching movies, and spending time with friends and family. 

Nate McQueen

Undergraduate Research Assistants


NaKeysha is an undergraduate student majoring in Psychology with a minor in Child, Youth, and Family Studies. After graduating she plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Developmental Psychology and later become a therapist for young children. She currently works at the UNL Children's Center and loves seeing how children interact in day-to-day activities. In her free time, NaKeysha likes to hang out with friends and family and binge-watch new TV shows. 

NaKeysha Olson

Undergraduate Research Assistants

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Claire is an undergraduate from Omaha, Nebraska. She is majoring in Psychology and Family Studies with minors Communication Studies, English, and Sociology. After graduating, she would like to pursue a Master's in Marriage and Family Therapy and one day work in private practice. She hopes to facilitate communication and understanding between individuals in order to create healthier relationships for all parties involved, as well as assisting families and couples through times of stress. In her free time, Claire enjoys being with her friends and family, writing, and painting.

Claire Watson

Undergraduate Research Assistants

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Duncan is a freshman Biochemistry Major and Math Minor. He enjoys playing tennis and volunteering at St. Elizabeth Hospital. After college, Duncan plans to attend Medical School in hopes of becoming a pediatrician. 

Duncan Works

Undergraduate Research Assistants