An associate professor of psychology at Georgetown University, Jennifer Woolard began her career at the National Victims Resource Center. While obtaining her doctoral degree in developmental and community psychology at the University of Virginia she alsoserved as a victim-witness volunteer in the county police department, a staff member to the Virginia Commission on Family Violence Prevention and a consultant with Virginians Against Domestic Violence (now Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance) . She then joined the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Adolescent Development and Juvenile Justice and became an assistant professor at the University of Florida’s Center for Studies in Criminology and Law. In 2002 she joined the psychology faculty at Georgetown University where she serves as co-director of their graduate program, supervising the Human Development and Public Policy track. Her research and action laboratory, the Georgetown Community Research Group, examines how individuals and families interact with systems in communities, including how first responders and veterans receive mental health treatment. Her Center for Research on Adolescence, Women, and the Law concentrates on care and control systems, including the juvenile and criminal justice systems and schools. Projects examine how youth and parents understand the right to remain silent, the right to an attorney, and the right to a trial. Dr. Woolard has testified as an expert before federal and state legislatures as well as in criminal cases. She has presented her research findings to a wide variety of academic, legal, and policy audiences, and won several awards for teaching excellence.
Erika is a fourth year student in the Human Development and Public Policy concentration. Erika received her BA in Psychology, with minors in Criminal Justice, Sociology and Anthropology, from Florida International University in 2010. In her time at FIU, Erika was a research assistant in the Investigative Interviewing Laboratory and lab manager for the Cognitive Laboratory and Workshop and Cog-Lab. Her research interests lie in the intersection of psychology and the law, more specifically as it pertains to adolescents in the justice system.