My name is Yayci Patiño and I submit my statement of interest to run for Student Representative-elect on the Hispanic Neuropsychology Society Executive Committee with great enthusiasm.
I am originally from Colombia and moved to the United States at age 13. I obtained a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree from the University of Central Florida. Then, I attended William James College in Boston to pursue a doctoral degree in clinical psychology with a focus in neuropsychology and Latino mental health. As part of my culturally-oriented training, I completed clinical work in Ecuador, where I provided psychosocial support for children and families at risk of postearthquake trauma. In my dissertation work I explored the efficacy of cognitive skills interventions in the Hispanic community. This work was humbling as I quickly realized the methodological barriers in research with our Spanish-speaking population. For this, I want to continue tailoring my work to serve the Hispanic community.
I am currently completing my internship training in the cultural and bilingual neuropsychology track at the University of California, Los Angeles, Semel Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior. In this role, I have had the privilege of conducting neuropsychological assessment in Spanish, English, and at times in both languages for patients with complex medical, neurological and psychiatric diagnoses. As a bilingual clinician, I have come to understand the many ways in which advocacy unravels in a multidisciplinary unit and the importance of providing a contextual interpretation of sociodemographic factors in brain-behavior relationships.
Being a student representative elect is a way of continuing to advocate for my community. As a first-generation immigrant and the first person in my family to attend college, I am aware of the obstacles we encounter as minority students in this country. I hope to serve in this capacity in order to support our student members in overcoming these unique challenges. I also hope to promote key topics to advance cultural neuropsychology and provide resources to foster cultural humility. I believe my passion and commitment to cultural neuropsychology would make me a well-rounded addition to the Hispanic Neuropsychology Society committee. Thank you for your time and consideration.
Yayci Patiño, M.A