2020 Tillman Scholar
As a beneficiary of the California Dream Act and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, HyeJung has first-hand experience of the value of American democracy and the impact of American voters who exercise their right to promote equality, equity and justice. These experiences inspired her to pursue both military service and academic research to contribute to our community’s promotion of equitable opportunities for the next generation of young people.
HyeJung enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserves via a Military Accessions Vital to National Interest enlistment program which helped her earn her U.S. citizenship. She aspires to a research psychologist commission to promote understanding of physiological, psychological and social variables that maintain the readiness of our military personnel and their families.
Through her doctoral studies in developmental psychology, she examines promotive and protective factors that buffer life stressors while fostering growth among marginalized youth (e.g., adolescents residing in neighborhoods of concentrated poverty, crime and other disadvantages, racial and ethnic minority youth).
HyeJung strongly believes in the power of community action. She aspires to be a collaborator/developer of empirically-supported legislation to promote resilient development for at-risk and marginalized youth. She hopes to be an effective liaison between the developmental research community and Congress, to inform public policy development, implementation and evaluation.