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Meet Our Faculty

Faculty List
Faculty member Bio
R. Hernandez
Rafael Hernández
Chair & Associate Professor

Dr. Rafael Hernández, Associate Professor, earned his Ph.D. in Counseling, Clinical, and School Psychology from UC Santa Barbara. He collaborates with the National Latino Research Center to engage popular education and community-based participatory research in the Homie UP Youth Empowerment Program as researcher/educator (2018-2021) and principal investigator/project director(2020-2021). Areas of scholarly interest and expertise include community cultural wealth, critical pedagogy, racial microaggressions, racial battle fatigue, and radical healing.

R. Beaulieu
Rodney Beaulieu

Rodney is Acadian Mi’kmaq from Aroostook, got his undergraduatetraining in Human Services and Psychology, and his Ph.D. degree in Educational Psychology from the University of California, Santa Barbara. His teaching history includes courses in research methods, psychology, humandevelopment, health science,organizational studies, and computer science. Other professional experience includes organizational development consulting and educational administration. Volunteer service includes fundraising for food banks, generating resources for shelters, and hotline intervention.

Carly Bertrand, Assistant Professor
Carly Offidani-Bertrand Assistant Professor

Dr. Offidani-Bertrand is a sociologist and assistant professor of Human Development. Her work focuses on how social structures and cultural frames shape adaptation to marginalization, and how processes of adaptation ultimately impact developmental trajectories and health. She has examined these phenomenon within mixed-status immigrant communities, minority students attending primarily white university institutions, as well as adolescents being tried as adults within the criminal justice system.

D. Betro
Dominick Betro
Dom is a retired CEO of Family Service Association (Riverside, CA). He is a Lecturer at California State UniversitySan Marcos, the University of NotreDame, and La Sierra University. Dom wasalso Ward One Councilman for the Cityof Riverside from 2004-2008. He has aB.S. Degree in Psychology, and a Masters Degree in Social Work, from Fordham University.
Travis Blunt 
I am a CSUSM Alumni and currently am an adjunct instructor. I am originally from Los Angeles but have found San Diego to be my new home. I do my best to incorporate community issues into my course development in order to focus our future leaders on a comprehensive solution to those issues after graduation.

J CokerJason Coker

Jason has worked to serve impoverished rural and urban communities in Utah, Ohio, and California since 1995, including 4 years as a communications and fundraising specialist at North San Diego County’s largest social services agency. He teaches leadership, management, and fundraising practicesin Administration in Human Service Settings (HD300). Additionally, Jason is an ordained minister who earned his M.A. in Global Leadership studies at Fuller Theological Seminary and servesas the pastor at First Christian Church of Oceanside, a historic congregation founded in 1875 that is dedicated to serving the needs of homeless and working poor neighbors in and around the downtown area.
K. Fuller
Kathy Fuller
Lecturer, Internship Coordinator
Dr. Fuller hails from a town in Colorado (24 people). She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary/Special Education from the University of Northern Colorado; a Master’s Degree in Elementary Education (emphasis-EarlyChildhood) from CSUN; and a Ph.D. in Psychological Studies of Education from CSULA/UCLA. She is currently the Internship Coordinator and teaches courses as a lecturer for the Human Development Department at CSUSM.
M. Guilarte
Miguel Guilarte

Dr. Guilarte has a diverse background that includes degrees in sociology, theology, philosophy, and engineering. His intellectual interests focus on adult development, especially around areas of transition and transformation. Initiation rites, rites of passage, and other life transitions are central to his work. In addition, he also works in the field of trauma, especially when this can be a catalyst for personal growth in connection with Post Traumatic Growth theories. He works in areas connected with creativity and innovation both by individuals and in systems. Dr. Guilarte is also much involved with furthering good
thinking and good research by developing both quantitative and qualitative research methods, including narrative analysis, phenomenology, and grounded theory.
T. Hall
Tracy Hall
Since 2001 Dr. Tracy Hall has taught in the field of Human Development and Psychology at CSUSM and at several local community colleges. She has adoctorate degree in Educational Leadership and Change and a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology. She is a licensed Marriage Family Therapist(LMFT) and was in private practice for many years. Her areas of research interest have included: addiction and its impact on the brain; health promotion and disease prevention; and the impact of nutrition on health, chronic illness, well-being and mental illness.
L. Jacobson-Harris
Leyenda Jacobson-Harris
Leyenda Jacobson-Harris is a CSUSM alumn; she graduated with her BA in Sociology in 2008 and her MA in Sociological Practice in 2010. She has taught at MiraCosta College and also currently serves as an instructor for the CSU Long Beach Sociology Department. Leyenda lives with her husband and pug in Oceanside, California.

Kelsey Jones
Assistant Professor
Dr. Kelsey M. Jones received her doctorate in Interdisciplinary Studies in Human Development from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, where she also completed a postdoctoral fellowship working with the Racial Empowerment Collaborative and the Department of Human Development and Quantitative Methods. As a former special education teacher, Kelsey pursues participatory and qualitative scholarship that focuses on disability and giftedness in the narratives of and about Black and Brown youth, the racialized school-to-prison pipeline, and racial literacy education as healing for children and adults instressful teaching and learning environments. Her current research focuses on the development of accessible racial literacy materials for children, adolescents, families, and educators under the Preparing Educators to Address Racial Literacy and Stress (PEARLS) Program.
Dr. Sabrina Liu
Sabrina Liu
Assistant Professor
Dr. Sabrina Liu earned her Ph.D. in Counseling, Clinical, and School Psychology from UC Santa Barbara. Her research focuses on understanding risk and resilience to stress and trauma during important developmental periods like pregnancy and childhood, particularly within racially and ethnically minoritized populations. Dr. Liu’s work is informed by her experiences as a trauma-informed clinical psychologist working with youth and families in hospitals, schools, and community mental health centers.
Leilani Pizano
Leilani Pizano is originally from the Bay Area and have been living in San Diego since 2011. She received her BA in Sociology from UC Santa Barbara and Master's in Sociological Practice from CSUSM. She has taught at several colleges throughout San Diego County and am have also been with the HD department as a lecturer for Statistics, Applied Research, and Research Methods.
R. Neuhart
Russel Neuhart
Dr. Russ Neuhart's professional experience includes direct services as aTherapist, Counselor/Case Manager, Program Manager and in Educational Administration. He received a BA in Psychology and an MA in Religious Education from the University of San Diego. He received his MA in Psychology and his Doctorate in Applied Psychology from United States International University-Alliant. His clinical experience encompasses victims of crime, abuse, & trauma; Individual, Couple & Family therapy; and Disability Counseling & Service Delivery. His research interestsare evidence-based treatment models & methods for Family Systems Intervention, Step- or "Blended" families, and the impact of Belief Systems on Mental Health.
Jessie Nichole
Dr. Mellor is a Lecturer in HD and FYUP. In addition to her Ph.D. in Educational Psychology, she holds an advanced certification in energy medicine. Dr. Mellor believes it is impossible for those who serve humanity to provide quality care if they don’t care for themselves –we can’t pour from an empty cup. Her teaching and student support modalities are unique, engaging, and universal.
F. Soriano
Fernando Soriano
Dr. Fernando I. Soriano, Dept. Chair and Professor, conducts research onadolescence, delinquency and onviolence prevention programming. He develops innovative developmentally and culturally appropriate prevention programs (e.g., surfing and culinary). He is also an expert on community needs assessments and on professional skill development among graduating seniors.His most recent books are: Surviving Guide for College Graduates During Economic Trends and Conducting Needs Assessments: A Multidisciplinary Approach.
shyuan tanShyuan Ching Tan
Assistant Professor
Dr. Tan received her MBA from the University of Minnesota and a MA in Gerontology from CSU San Francisco, and a PhD in Human Development and Family Studies from the Pennsylvania State University. Dr. Tan studies minority aging.  Her work focuses on minority older adults’ cognitive health (memory and neuropsychological testing). Her work also focuses on life purpose and its application and utility in minority older adults’ health and well-being.  She is interested in the social determinants of health with a cultural lens, and focuses on resilience and protective factors, e.g., the protective effects of coping strength and sense of purpose in life on health outcomes


Teru Toyokawa
Assistant Professor

Dr. Teru Toyokawa, Associate Professor, received a BA and a MA in Psychology from Waseda University, Tokyo, Japan, and a PhD in Human Development and Family Studies from the Pennsylvania State University, and postdoctoral training at the University of Michigan. His research and publications focus on cultural comparisons in the conceptions of adulthood and maturity, and career development among ethnic minority youth.

Jolie Van Schoik 
My name is Jolie and I’m an adjunct lecturer here in the HD department. My Bachelor's degree is in Child Development and my MA is in Childhood Studies. I primarily teach about children and families as I have over 20 years working professionally in early childhood education and services. I made the shift to teaching at community colleges and universities after the birth of my third child and I love teaching the next generation of passionate and committed students!