Graduate Students

Konrad Bresin, Graduate Student

bresin2Konrad is from Fargo, ND. He completed his BS and MS at the North Dakota State University. His research focuses on answering the question why people engage in behaviors that may have short term benefits (e.g. temporary relief from painful emotions) but have long term negative consequences (e.g., problems in interpersonal relationships, physical health problems). In particular, he is interested in the role that emotions play in the onset and continuance of these behaviors. To date, his research has focused on the behaviors of nonsuicidal self injury, aggression, and substance use.

 Talia Ariss, Graduate Student

Talia Ariss (1)Talia received her B.A. in psychology from the American University of Beirut and an MA in Psychology in Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. Her research interests focus on investigating the interplay between one’s emotions, cognition, and social interactions as they relate to substance misuse. Specifically, she is interested in looking at the factors that increase one’s likelihood of developing of a substance use disorder. Outside the lab, Talia enjoys drawing and reading about nineteenth century European art.

Dani (Dahyeon) Kang, Graduate Student


Dani received her B.S. in clinical/community psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2017. She has been working with Dr. Fairbairn since her early undergraduate years. Dani is broadly interested in identifying socio-contextual factors that might contribute to understanding how alcohol and substance use might become a problem for some people. Specifically, she uses both laboratory and ambulatory methods to investigate the social and emotional effects of alcohol on individuals. She is also interested in incorporating ERP (Event-Related Potential) methods into current alcohol-related  research. In her spare time, Dani enjoys traveling, swimming, as well as baking desserts!

Walter James Venerable, III, Graduate Student

1Walter received his B.S. in Psychology from Arizona State University. His research interests are focused on alcohol’s role in human sexual interactions. Specifically, alcohol’s role in the perception of sexual cues or romantic interest that may lead to the initiation of sexual behaviors. Walter is interested in using this research to make informed improvements to sexual assault awareness and prevention efforts. Outside of lab Walter enjoys hiking through nature, watching educational documentaries, and participating in massively multiplayer online video game communities.