Our Team

Teresa Girolamo, PhD | Lab Director

CV | personal website | mentorship statement

Teresa is an Assistant Professor in the School of Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences. She is a former special education teacher who received her Ph.D. in Child Language from the University of Kansas.

Teresa’s research examines how individual differences, together with environmental influences, shape life outcomes in children, adolescents, and adults. She works with autistic individuals, as well as nonautistic individuals with and without developmental language disorders. Teresa is especially interested in translating this knowledge into community-based supports through participatory approaches to help individuals meet their goals. Outside the lab, Teresa likes hiking, running, and adopting geriatric poodles.

Alicia Escobedo, MA, CF-SLP

Alicia Escobedo is a 5th year student in the Joint Doctoral Program in Language and Communicative Disorders at San Diego State University/UC San Diego. Her research interests include developing culturally and linguistically responsive measures for the assessment of bilingual children.

Alicia’s dissertation work, supported by an NIH F31 Fellowship, focuses on the development of a grammatical productivity measure in Spanish for the assessment of Spanish-English bilingual children. Alicia aims to empower bilingual children and their caregivers in all contexts, especially during language assessment. Alicia is also currently a clinical fellow in the SDSU Speech-Language Clinic. In her free time, she enjoys making earrings and exploring new coffee shops. 

Brianna Ángel, BA student

Brianna is a third-year transfer student at San Diego State University. She is pursuing an undergraduate degree in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences with a minor in Latin American Studies. She is a San Diego local who grew up in a Latinx community, allowing her to embrace her Spanish-English language. Her areas of interest include language and outcomes in marginalized communities, considering social determinants of health and bilingualism. She would like to pursue a career in the field as an SLP or academic researcher. Outside the classroom, Brianna enjoys volunteering at a local hospital, being a member of NSSLHA, and being part of the program “Progresando En Salud.” In her free time, she likes to plant fruits and vegetables, thrift, go on hikes with her dachshund, and spend time with family and friends.  

Makenna Bailey, BA Student

Makenna is a second-year undergraduate student in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences at San Diego State University from Seattle, Washington. Her research interests include developing new techniques for assessment and treatment. As a member of NSSLHA, she looks forward to becoming more involved in the SLHS Community, specifically through joining a research lab! In her free time, she enjoys a relaxing beach day with friends and trying new recipes! 

Noa DeBasc, BA Student

Noa is a first year undergraduate student in the Speech Language Hearing Sciences program at San Diego State University. She hails from Los Angeles, California. An aspiring speech-language pathologist, Noa has worked with kids of all ages, as well as those with autism and other neurodivergencies. She herself is bilingual and interested in the many intersectionalities of speech impediments and bilingualism, neurodivergencies, and minoritized and oppressed backgrounds. In her free time, she enjoys theatre and hopes to incorporate that into her career as a speech pathologist.

Quinn Di Cristina, BA Student

Quinn Di Cristina is a junior at San Diego State University. She is majoring in Speech Language and Hearing Science, with a minor in Spanish. She hopes to eventually work in a research environment or in a hospital setting as a certified speech-language pathologist. She also has the goal of working abroad in Spain after graduate school. Outside of school and work, Quinn loves to dance, is a yoga instructor, and has a passion for art history and travel!

Ainsley Jennieve Perez, BA Student

Ainsley is a third-year transfer student at San Diego State University from the Bay Area. She is majoring in Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences, with a minor in Child and Family Development. Her plan is to become a speech-language pathologist serving children on the autism spectrum and to be an advocate for neurodiversity in the Filipino community, spreading awareness and knowledge to destigmatize autism and other aspects of neurodivergence. Ainsley is a student representative of NSSLHA, Andrés Bonifacio Samahan, and the Asian Pacific Student Alliance. Outside her campus pursuits, her hobbies include journaling and film photography! 

Kelsey Lam, BA Student

Kelsey is a second-year undergraduate student, majoring in psychology and linguistics at San Diego State University. She is from Orange County, California and has aspirations to pursue clinical psychology in the future. She is interested in how people learn and process language from a linguistic and cognitive perspective. Aside from that, she enjoys thrifting, learning languages, and dancing.

Minnie Stanford, BA student

Minnie is a third-year undergraduate student at Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana. She is studying Psychology and Public Health with the hopes of entering the field of Speech-Language Pathology. She is passionate about working with children. In her free time, she enjoys hanging out with her friends and trying new restaurants. 

William Nguyen, High School Intern

William is a current junior at Westview High School in San Diego. He plans to pursue a future career in medicine, with a keen interest in neurology and radiology. His research interests include neuroscience, translational research, and clinical investigations. Outside of research, William enjoys working on his nonprofit organization “Project Binary” and volunteering at a local hospital. In his leisure time, William finds joy in hanging out with friends, indulging in indoor and beach volleyball, and listening to music. William aims to make a meaningful impact in the healthcare arena in the years to come.

Lab Alumni

Hamsa AlMashhadani, BA

Hamsa AlMashhadani is a BA graduate of SDSU with a double major in Linguistics and Speech, Language, and Hearing Sciences and a minor in Child and Family Development and Bilingual Speech-Language Pathology certification. Her research interests include early language development, especially in Arabic- and English-speaking children in diglossic contexts.

Prior to her time at SDSU, Hamsa earned associate of arts degrees in Social and Behavioral Sciences and American Sign Language from Grossmont College. There, she worked as an interpreter for CalWORKs, a public program providing supports and services to families with children. Outside her academic life, Hamsa is an NBCMI-certified healthcare interpreter.

For students

If you are interested in joining the lab, please read this mentorship statement and then complete this form.