Research Team

Principle Investigator

Heather C. Lench,  PhD
Associate Professor & Department Head
Department of Psychology
Texas A&M University
4235 TAMU
College Station, TX 77843-4235
Faculty Profile:

I welcome contact from anyone interested in the lab or with similar research interests. I would also appreciate any comments about the site or recommendations about information that is useful to students.

Doctoral Students

Ken Perez: Howdy! I was born and raised in tiny, beautiful Connecticut. My undergraduate education was completed in 2015 at the University of Connecticut, Storrs with degrees in Psychology and Economics. I am currently in my second year enrolled in Texas A&M’s Social Psychology PhD program. My research interests include affective forecasting, optimistic bias, functionalist theories of emotion, judgment and decision-making. I’m looking forward to another year of productive, fun, and rewarding experiences with our lab!


Wan Yidou

Hello! I am a second year PhD student. I finished my undergraduate degree at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. I was born and raised in China. My research interests include emotions, decision making, and cultures.

Lab Manager



Zari K. Haggenmiller | she/her/hers
Lab Manager and Research Assistant
Dr. Lench’s Emotion Science Lab
Lab email:



I graduated from Kalamazoo College, Kalamazoo, MI with a B.A. in Human Development and Social Relations. I’ve worked as Dr. Lench’s full time research lab manager for one year now and I love it. We have a strong lab team, and there is always something new to learn if you are interested. I will be applying to a range of psychology PhD programs this fall.

Research Assistants

Abigail Ramos: Howdy, my name is Abigail Ramos and I am a freshman psychology major with an interest in sociology. My goal is to pursue a PhD in clinical psychology with a concentration in child development.

Cameron McCann: My name is Cameron McCann and I am trying to obtain a Psychology degree. I’m interested in the aspect of decision making as well as human behavior in general.

Cienna Hancock: I am a sophomore psychology major. My interests include various aspects of cognitive development and the effects of autism on children. I plan to pursue a PhD in clinical psychology upon graduating.

Erin Cloud: I am a junior psychology major. I transferred to Texas A&M University after earning an A.S. in psychology at Navarro College. My interests focus on severe/chronic mental illness and counseling. I plan to graduate from A&M in 2018 and pursue a PhD in clinical psychology.

Mariana Vazquez: Howdy! I am a junior psychology major and sociology minor. I will be rejoining Dr. Lench’s lab after studying abroad in Seville, Spain during the fall semester. My goal is to earn a PhD in school psychology.