2022 Student Section: Erika Infantino

Statement of Intent
I am applying for the three-year term Chair-Elect Student Section’s Executive position. From a very young age and throughout my academic career, I have always been passionate about being involved in student affairs and value student representation. As a student, it is my responsibility to ensure that my peers and I are getting the education and experiences we want. I have learnt that it is critical for students to have a voice if they want to see change. Being a part of student life has led me to create wonderful opportunities, build connections, and has made my educational experience worth wild. Throughout school, I have led charity groups that have helped me build my leadership and communication skills; I have been a part of non-profit organizations that have allowed me to help young students and families; and I have been a part of advertising committees that have allowed me to develop my marking and social media skills.  These experiences have provided me with wonderful learning opportunities that have allowed me to develop into the student leader I am today, and I wish to take the skills I have developed and share them with the rest of my fellow Canadian Psychology students. I am proud to consider myself an organized, positive, calm, dedicated, creative, team-worker and with these qualities. I hope to represent the voices of many other students, hear their needs, and help make their education experience more enriching by increasing student involvement, engaging student interest, and fostering a student community where all students can come share their experiences and get support.
Erika Infantino is a first year Master’s student in the School and Applied Child Psychology program at McGill University in Montreal, QC. Her research interests include the role of the Individualized Education Plan (IEP) on student success and teachers’ current perspective and barriers to fully utilizing the IEP in the classroom.  With the results obtained from her Master’s thesis, she aims to create a teacher intervention that will facilitate the usage of IEPs in classrooms by providing educators with tools to use throughout the year that will facilitate finding evidence-based resources, facilitate group discussion, and help foster strategies that will allow the IEP to become more specific, resourceful, and solution-based. Her undergraduate thesis investigated the role of classroom cohesion on individual levels of prosociality in young students. She is also currently studying graduate students’ and clinicians’ perspectives and use of evidence-base practices and open science platforms. Overall, she is interested in understanding barriers professionals face in better implementing research into their practice; ultimately, narrowing the research-to-practice gap. She is also a program student representative, volunteer at the West Montreal Readaptation Centre, and Client Care coordinator at a private therapy and wellness centre. Previously, she has worked as a research assistant in multiple labs examining the role of peers and parents on youth. All throughout her studies, she has worked and volunteered in a variety of settings that have allowed her to become passionate about working towards growing youth well-being and mental health. On her free time, Erika enjoys walks with her dog and hiking.