Sissi H. Ribeiro

Sissi H. Ribeiro

Sissi H. Ribeiro

Graduate Research Assistant

Clinical Psychology: PTSD, trauma appraisal, cultural diversity, suicide prevention, military psychology

Sissi Ribeiro is a doctoral candidate in the Clinical Psychology Ph.D. program working with Dr. Keith Renshaw in the Anxiety, Stress, & Relationships Lab. She is also an Advanced Psychology Extern at the VA Washington DC Health Care, in Washington D.C.

Her research interests include the role of culture and identities in shaping trauma cognitions, such as appraisal, beliefs, and attributions, and their potential impact on overall functionality. Her previous experience working with the military population remains a strong area of research and clinical interest.

Prior to graduate school, Sissi worked at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS) recruiting participants at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for a randomized controlled trial for individuals receiving inpatient treatment due to a suicide-related behavior. As a Postbaccalaureate at the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA/NIH) she investigated the role of dopamine neuron plasticity in fear learning tasks, acquisition, and extinction.

Sissi was also a Division II NCAA athlete, Swimming & Diving team at Queens College CUNY, where she graduated with a bachelor degree in Psychology.

Selected Publications



Ribeiro, S., Renshaw, K. D., & Allen, E. S. (2022). Military-related relocation stress and psychological distress in military partners. Journal of Family Psychology. Advance online publication.

Martin, L., Giff, S., Ribeiro, S., Fyffe, S., Renshaw, K. (2022). Changes in relationship quality in the COVID-19 pandemic: Associations with pandemic stressors in couple communication. The American Journal of Family Therapy. 

Vesco, K. M., LaCroix, J. M., Bond, A., Fox, A., Ribeiro, S., Darmour, C., & Ghahramanlou-Holloway, M. (2022). Three clinical techniques from cognitive behavior therapy for suicide prevention. Social Work in Mental Health, 20, 672–681.

Aronowitz, V. J., Perez, A., O’Brien, C., Aziz, S., Rodriguez, E., Wasner, K., Ribeiro, S., … & Pytte, C. (2020). Unilateral vocal nerve resection alters neurogenesis in the avian song system in a region-specific manner. PLoS ONE, 16, e0256709.

Pignatelli, M., Tejeda, H. A., Barker, D. J., Bontempi, L., Wu, J., Lopez, A., Ribeiro, S., … & Bonci, A. (2020).  Cooperative synaptic and intrinsic plasticity in a disynaptic limbic circuit drive stress-induced anhedonia and passive coping in mice. Molecular Psychiatry, 2, 6868–6887.

George, B. J., Ribeiro, S., Lee-Tauler, S. Y., Bond, A. E., Perera, K. U., Grammer, G., ... & Ghahramanlou-Holloway, M. (2019). Demographic and clinical characteristics of military service members hospitalized following a suicide attempt versus suicide ideation. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 16, 3274.

Ribeiro, S., LaCroix, J., De Oliveira, F., Novak, L., Lee-Tauler, S., Darmour, C., ... & Ghahramanlou-Holloway, M. (2018). The link between posttraumatic stress disorder and functionality among United States military service members psychiatrically hospitalized following a suicide crisis. Healthcare, 6, 95.

Pignatelli, M., Umanah, G., Ribeiro, S., Chen, R., Karuppagounder, S., Yau, H.,… & Bonci, A. (2017). Synaptic plasticity in dopamine neurons shapes fear learning. Neuron, 93, 425-440.

Grants and Fellowships

Doctoral Research Scholars Award, Tier 1

Fall 2022 - Summer 2023

George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

Courses Taught

Clinical Practicum in Psychology (PSYC430), Fall 2019, Spring 2020, Spring 2021

Biopsychology Laboratory (PSYC373), Summer 2019

Principles of Learning (PSYC304) - Laboratory Instructor, Spring 2019

Basic Concepts in Psychology (PSYC100) - Grading Assistant, Fall 2018


George Mason University (2019)

Fairfax, VA (APA Accredited)

Master of Arts, Psychology, Clinical Concentration

Queens College of the City University of New York (2014)

Queens, NY

Bachelor of Arts, Psychology



Doctoral Research Scholars Award, Tier 1 (2022-2023)

George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

Graduate Student Travel Award (2012, 2019)

George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

Mason Teaching Core Award; Writing Intensive Course (2019)

George Mason University, Fairfax, VA

Post Baccalaureate Intramural Research Training Award (2014 - 2016)

National Institutes of Health, Baltimore, MD

Office of the President Scholarship (2013 - 2014)

Queens College, Queens, NY

Undergraduate Student Training in Academic Research Award (2012 - 2014)

NIH Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC); Department of Biology, Queens College, CUNY

NIH Minority Access to Research Careers Fellowship (2011, 2013)

Queens College, Queens, NY

Excellence in Research and Scholarship Award (2012)

Northeast Undergraduate Research Organization for Neuroscience