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Monica Tsethlikai

Dr. Monica Tsethlikai is an associate professor in the T. Denny Sanford School of Social and Family Dynamics at Arizona State University. Dr. Tsethlikai received her undergraduate degree from the University of Notre Dame. She earned a master’s degree in Indigenous Nations Studies followed by a doctoral degree in psychology (cognitive and quantitative) at the University of Kansas. Her research fully integrates both the rigorous theoretical pursuit of knowledge and the application of this knowledge to public policy to promote the health and well-being of American Indian/Alaska Native/Indigenous Hawaiian (AI/AN/IH) children. She is an enrolled member of the A:shiwi people (also known as the Zuni Nation). Dr. Tsethlikai’s most recent study incorporated a strengths-based focus on the role cultural pride and cultural engagement play in shaping cognitive development and well-being in American Indian children. Specifically, she examined the development of executive function and mental health among urban American Indian children in relation to stress (measured by parental report and cortisol levels in children’s hair). She is committed to promoting social justice through basic research that promotes positive development through reclaiming and restoring original instruction, traditional values, and protective cultural practices. Past awards include: Class of 2017 William T Grant Scholar; Native Children’s Research Exchange Scholar, Ford Foundation Pre- and Post-doctoral awards, and the American Psychological Association Science Directorate’s Dissertation Research Award.

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