Member Spotlight: Stephanie L. Haft

Ph.D. Candidate, University of California Berkeley. 

Stephanie received the Outstanding Graduate Student Research Award from the Asian Caucus during the SRCD 2023 Biennial Meeting. This award recognizes an outstanding graduate student who initiates their own research (dissertation or other) involving Asian/Asian American families and children. 


Do you have a mentor or mentors who have been instrumental in your career and, if so, who and how? 

My research mentor, Dr. Qing Zhou, has been instrumental in serving as a career role model. Dr. Zhou stands out in her prioritization of mentorship and in particular in fostering pathways to pursue research for undergraduate students. I admire how Dr. Zhou strikes a balance between scaffolding independence and offering guidance to her mentees, and I seek to replicate this balance in my own research mentorship efforts. 

What advice would you give to a Graduate student beginning their Ph.D. studies in Developmental Science or related? 

Don't be afraid to get side tracked! Research pathways are not always linear. If one research project leads to another question or line of study then it is beneficial for you and for the field to pursue that. 

What is your Best SRCD memory? 

My first SRCD Biennial was in 2015 when I was an undergraduate and presenting my first poster. I remember meeting other undergraduates who were presenting their posters next to me and going out to lunch. These are connections that I have still maintained today! 

What are some of your hobbies? 

I enjoy weightlifting and strength training. This is a great way to start my day and have a sense of community and encouragement outside of work. 

What publication or book would you say is a must read in the field (and why)? 

"The Orchid and the Dandelion: Why Some Children Struggle and How All Can Thrive" by W. Thomas Boyce. This book is a great example of using findings from basic developmental science and making it accessible to the general public. 


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