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Leo J

- Research Program Mentor

PhD at University of California, Santa Barbara


Neuroscience of Addiction, Psychopharmacology, Neuropharmacology, Neuropsychopharmacology


Hello! My name is Leo, I am an incoming psychiatry postdoctoral fellow at the Yale School of Medicine. My area of research is in behavioral neuroscience, more specifically, psychopharmacology and alcohol addiction. My passion lies in understanding the intricate interplay between biological, psychological, and environmental factors that contribute to the development and persistence of addictive behaviors. Through my work, I strive to deepen our understanding of addiction and contribute to the collective knowledge in the field. When I'm not engaged in my academic pursuits, you can find me out and about in the world, seeking out new destinations and experiences. Whether it's a leisurely road trip to a nearby destination or a full-on globetrotting extravaganza to immerse myself in a new culture, I always feel a sense of adventurous excitement! Traveling allows me to broaden my perspective on the world, learn about different customs and traditions, and of course, indulge in new and delicious cuisines!

Project ideas

Project ideas are meant to help inspire student thinking about their own project. Students are in the driver seat of their research and are free to use any or none of the ideas shared by their mentors.

From Research to Reality: Transforming Addiction Science into Public Health Education

Are you ready to dive into the captivating world of addiction science? This project is an exciting opportunity for you to explore the mechanisms of action of various classes of drugs, from stimulants to opioids to depressants, and how they affect the brain's reward pathway. You'll gain valuable insight into the long-term effects of drug use on the brain and body, including addiction, tolerance, and withdrawal. But that's not all - armed with your newfound knowledge, you'll have the chance to create a science communication piece that informs others about the risks and effects of drug use. Whether it's an eye-catching infographic or a captivating educational video, you'll be able to spread the word and raise awareness about the dangers of drug addiction.

Exploring the Impact of Cultural and Linguistic Factors on the Diagnosis and Treatment of Mental Health Disorders in Spanish-Speaking Populations

Are you interested in learning about how cultural and linguistic factors affect the diagnosis and treatment of mental health disorders in Spanish-speaking populations? In this project, you can start by researching the prevalence of mental health disorders among Spanish-speaking populations and how these disorders are diagnosed and treated. Next, you can investigate the cultural and linguistic barriers that can prevent effective communication between healthcare providers and Spanish-speaking patients, such as language proficiency and cultural beliefs. You can also explore the impact of these barriers on the use of psychopharmacological treatments, such as medication adherence and dosage adjustments. The project could be translated into both English and Spanish to reach a wider audience and promote better mental health outcomes for Hispanic communities.

Coding skills

Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS)

Languages I know

Spanish, native speaker

Teaching experience

I have taught and mentored both undergraduate and graduate students in various capacities. I have provided career development and graduate school mentorship. I have taught students both as a teaching assistant and as an instructor of record.


Work experience

Yale School of Medicine (2024 - Current)
Postdoctoral Fellow


California Baptist University
BA Bachelor of Arts (2015)
Psychology & Spanish
Azusa Pacific University
MS Master of Science (2017)
Research Psychology and Data Analytics
University of California, Santa Barbara
PhD Doctor of Philosophy
Behavioral Neuroscience

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