PhD Student Ambassadors
Who We Are
NYU Silver PhD Program Student Ambassadors are enthusiastic, well-informed, student representatives who work together with the PhD Program Office to promote opportunities available to prospective students within the program and across the university.
PhD Program Student Ambassadors assist with program events, such as Open Houses and New Student Orientation, and respond to inquiries on student life within the program and in New York City.
Gerri K. Connaught
Gerri K. Connaught is a PhD candidate at the Silver School of Social Work. Her clinical experience includes working with various student populations—such as first-generation college students, student veterans, and adult learners—in transitioning into life as college students. Gerri’s research focuses on the structural ways in which higher education institutions contribute to feelings of imposter phenomenon among students of color and how this impacts their mental health, sense of self, and retention rates.
Areas of Interest: Imposter Phenomenon, Students of Color, Higher Education, Student Retention, First-Generation College Students
“The faculty and peer support that is provided by this program is something that I am extremely grateful for. Everyone is invested in your growth and in helping you reach your academic and professional goals.”
Jacqueline (Jackie) Cosse is a PhD Student at the Silver School of Social Work. Their research interests include work at the intersection of racism and gender-based violence, understanding the role of white carceral feminism in the criminalization of survivors of color, and critically examining white supremacy and cisheterosexism in research. Jackie holds a deep commitment to uplifting the narratives of queer, trans, disabled, and immigrant survivors of color in her research.
Areas of Interest: Intimate-Partner Violence, Criminalization, Mandated Arrest Policy, Conflations of Gender/Sex in Research, Mixed Methods
“As a psychodynamically-trained social worker with limited experience in statistical analyses, I’m grateful for the accessibility of my first-year statistics classes, as my professors in both semesters held an incredible amount of patience without sacrificing rigor.”
Cliff Whetung is a PhD student in the Silver School of Social Work and an NYU Urban Doctoral Fellow. He has clinical experience working in early childhood mental health and with older adults diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease or dementia. His research interests include intergenerational program models, Alzheimer's and dementia interventions, and child welfare. Cliff is particularly interested in quantitative methods and developing theoretical models for intergenerational interactions.
Areas of Interest: Aging, Intergenerational Programs, Child Welfare, Theory Development
“The challenging yet supportive structure of SIlver's PhD program has grown dramatically in my short time here. My relationships with other students and my mentors have also made every day here both fun and stimulating. I love it here!”
Gahwan Yoo is a PhD student in the Silver School of Social Work. Her research interests include immigrants/refugees, minority mental health and mental health disparities, community and spatial analysis, and text as data methodology. She currently serves as a research assistant on two projects funded by the Silver Center for Data Science and Social Equity, including the project on Asian Americans' community well-being, and another on using natural language processing to measure person-centered care in behavioral health settings. She holds an M.A. in Social Welfare and B.A. in Sociology from Ewha Womans University in South Korea.
Areas of Interest: Immigrants/Refugees, Minority Mental Health and Mental Health Disparities, Community-Based Intervention and Advocacy, and Text as Data for Social Work Research
“I feel lucky to be a part of NYU Silver with supportive peers and faculties. I have grown more than I had expected through the coursework, academic advisement, and professional development programs at the Silver PhD program.”