Scholar Alumni

Post-Doctoral Candidates

Caroline Figueroa, MD, Ph.D. (2019-2021)

Caroline Figueroa

Caroline Figueroa, MD, Ph.D. was a Postdoctoral Scholar at the UC Berkeley School of Social Welfare from 2019-2021. She obtained her MD degree and Ph.D. degree at the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands. During her PhD, she spent 1,5 years at the University of Oxford for a research traineeship. Her research has focused on cognitive and neurobiological vulnerability factors for recurrence of depression in patients recovered from Major Depressive Disorder. Dr. Figueroa's current research interest is on digital interventions for depression, with an emphasis on developing cutting-edge innovations that tailor to the needs of underserved populations. As a post-doc she was involved in the analysis, testing, and implementation of digital applications for depression and diabetes in ethnic minority patients with a focus on Latinx patients. 

Research Staff Alumni

Research Coordinators

Rosa Hernandez-Ramos, B.A.  (2018-2021)

Rosa Hernandez-Ramos, B.A. was the Research Coordinator for the Digital Health Equity and Access Lab (dHEAL) from fall 2018 to spring 2021. Rosa received her B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Education Studies from UCLA in Spring 2018. During her time as an undergrad, Rosa worked as a Research Assistant for UCLA’s Department of Psychology where she studied the needs of underserved groups including children with anxiety disorders, Latinos, and rural populations. Within dHEAL Rosa organized, managed, and implemented a variety of different digital health interventions for patients with depression and diabetes. Rosa is a currenly clinical psychology doctoral student at UC Irvine. Her primary research interests include increasing mental health literacy in racial/ethnic minorities, increasing mental health literacy and access to evidence-based treatment for Latinx youth through Youth-led Participatory Action Research, implementation science, and digital mental health interventions.

Graduate Students

Alein Y. Haro, MPH |


Alein Y. Haro, MPH, is a Ph.D. student in Health Policy, Population & Data Science program. Alein's research examines how social processes create social conditions that affect physical and mental health and create health inequities. She specifically studies the association between occupational and non-occupational exposures, like immigration policy vulnerability, and their effects on mental health outcomes among the most vulnerable workers, including immigrant day laborers.  Alein is an RWJF Health Policy Research Scholar and seeks to use her work to create and implement policies and culturally-relevant digital health interventions that advance equity and health. She earned her BA and MPH from UCLA. 

Claire Boone, MPH |


 Claire Boone is a PhD Student in the Health Policy, Health Economics program. She studies the impact of programs and policies to improve chronic disease management, and is particularly interested in health in Latin America. She earned her MPH in Epidemiology/Biostatistics from Berkeley in 2017.

Volunteer Research Assistants

Vivian Yip |


Vivian Yip is an undergraduate  studying Molecular Environmental Biology major at UC Berkeley.  Vivian is passionate about being a part of shaping and improving healthcare coverage in the United States and addressing social determinants of health within her community. As a volunteer for Health Advocates and position as a peer counselor at UC Berkeley, she has seen how there are still limits to medicine and health disparities that need to be recognized in order to improve patient care. She hopes to understand the research that drives public and mental health in order to make health care services more accessible to low-income populations. As a research assistant, she is involved in a pilot project on mHealth intervention ethics and data privacy, which entails qualitative data collection and analysis.

Suchitra Sudarshan |

Suchitra is an undergraduate studying Molecular and Cell Biology & Social Welfare at UC Berkeley. She is interested in studying how various stressors become biologically embedded in individuals, as well as how those biological imprints shape and predict physical and mental health outcomes, with a particular focus on depression.  Suchitra is also the Executive Director for the Undergraduate Journal of Psychology at Berkeley and enjoys teaching students how to review and edit original research manuscripts in order to publish scholarly writing. This, coupled with her experience as a Peer-Reviewer for Impulse: The Premiere Undergraduate Neuroscience Journal, has allowed Suchitra to see the ways in which scientific communication can inform the public. Because of this, she is also interested in the ways in which research  can be used to develop programs and inform policy audiences. As a Research Assistant, she is involved in data management, participant outreach, and creating informative videos for participants.  

April Azusada, B.A. |

April Azusada​ was a post-bacc research assistant for the Digital Health Equity and Access Lab (dHEAL) from 2019 to 2020.  She received her B.A. in Social Welfare from UC Berkeley in Spring 2019. As an undergraduate at UC Berkeley obtained research experience abroad while working at Prague, Czech Republic for a clinical research project that focused on pharmaceuticals. Post-grad, April worked as a behavioral therapist and volunteered as a research assistant in our lab. Within dHEAL, she assisted in every day to day research activities such as administrative work, data management, and on-boarding participants. April is currently an MSW student at Columbia. 

Lizbeth Ortiz-Pivaral |

Lizbeth Ortiz-Pivaral was an undergraduate research assistant for the Digital Health Equity and Access Lab (dHEAL) 2018 to 2020. As a public health major, Lizbeth has a genuine interest in improving the health outcomes of Latino communities worldwide. Being the child of Central American immigrants from Guatemala and El Salvador, she wants to expand the mental-health resources available to low-income Latino communities, including individuals facing the additional challenges of having chronic illness (i.e. diabetes). As a research assistant, Lizbeth aided with data management and in patient recruitment. 

Alexander Chavarria, B. A.|

Alexander Chavarria was a post-bacc research assistant for the Digital Health Equity and Access Lab (dHEAL) from 2019 to 2020. Alexander received his B.A. in History with an emphasis in Latin American History and his Minor in Latino Studies from SFSU in Fall 2016. His interest in Psychology stemmed as a result of working with Latino migrants who suffered from migration-related health issues such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and diabetes. Alexander’s experience ultimately shaped his desire to one day become a Mental Health Counselor to work with Latino populations. As a Research Assistant at dHEAL, Alexander assisted with the logistics of the DIAMANTE Study in an effort to expose himself to current research that can benefit his future work as a Mental Health Counselor. Alexander is currently an MSW student at UC Berkeley's School of Social Welfare. 

Cindy Tenorio, B. A.  | 


Cindy Tenorio was an undergraduate research assistant for the Digital Health Equity and Access Lab (dHEAL) during 2020. Cindyreceived her B. A. in Public Health in Fall 2020. As an undergrad, Cindy was previously involved in FETCH, a pilot program at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland, where she coordinated transportation for underserved diabetic patients and families who lacked transportation to necessary appointments. She was also involved in the UCSF ECHO study looking at different environmental exposures that could potentially be detrimental to pregnant women. Growing up in a predominantly Latinx community, she witnessed a multitude of mental health issues and inequities.  As a research assistant, at dHEAL she was involved in data management, social media usage for recruitment and shadowing study visits. Cindy is currently a clinical research coordinator at UCSF.