Biobehavioral Health Alumni Profile: Brittney Barbieri

Brittney Barbieri


Major: B.S. 2011 Biobehavioral Health, Pennsylvania State University

Minor: Psychology

Graduation: May 2011

Additional Education/Training

July 2011- Present:
Postbaccalaureate Intramural Research Training Award - Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development

July 2011
National Institute of Health (NIH) Clinical Research training course

June 2011
Schreyer Honors College Graduate, May 2011

On the B.S. Program in Biobehavioral Health

This program is extremely unique for two reasons, first, class selection is flexible to accommodate your career goals and second, unlike most majors, BBH students graduate with a solid grasp on the whole research process. This is an amazing tool for people planning to continue their education in a graduate program. I didn’t realize how good of an understanding I had of the whole research process until I started working among students from other majors. See the thing with BBH is that you can make it as easy or as hard as you’d like, even if you do not want to be a chemist or a biologist, these concepts are important to understand as a health professional. Aside from class work, the professors have a wide variety of backgrounds and interests if you don’t find any of their work interesting, you might be in the wrong major. Getting involved is easy and encouraged by many professors, the faculty members that I built a relationship with were great mentors and without them I would have never saw my potential.

Current areas of Professional Interest

I work as a postbac fellow for the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development in the Prevention Research Branch, this is one of the few behavioral research labs at the National Institute of Health in Bethesda Maryland. I do a lot of standard lab tasks such as lit searches, helping with citations, formatting papers and working on data entry. We are also required to do a poster presentation before leaving the program and everyone is encouraged to participate in the many professional seminars held here at the NIH. There are a lot of great opportunities here and it is a great opportunity to consider before applying to graduate school.


July 2011-Present:
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
Postbac Reasearch Fellow
Participating in a variety of workshops and seminars to prepare for graduate studies as well as providing support to doctoral students and principal investigators in day to day research related activities. In addition to working independently on projects as a way to develop a clear understanding of my true interests as a professional.

Jan 2009-July 2011:
Penn State Prevention Research Center- Alcohol and Skin Cancer Projects
Research Assistant
Worked on multiple federally funded projects doing a variety of tasks such as literature reviews, data entry, participant recruiting, editing and coding.

April 2010-Nov 2010:
Pacific Institute for Research Evaluation- Zero Tolerance Project
Data Collector
Work on the road-side project surveying drivers about their knowledge of drinking and driving laws as well as assessing intoxication and administering preliminary breathalyzer tests.

Jan 2010- Aug 2010:
Personality and Psychopathology and Psychotherapy Research Lab for Dr. Levy
Research Assistant
Worked coding participant behaviors and psychologist notes, as well as entering data, doing literature reviews and other basic tasks to support lab functioning.

Dec 2009- Sept 2010:
State College Chiropractic and Massage Center
Chiropractic Assistant
Worked on soft-tissue before and after chiropractic adjustments and instructed patients through manual therapy.

Jan 2009-Dec 2009:
Waffle Shop in downtown State College

Activities/Community Services

August 2011:
Volunteer for the Bridges to Pals mentoring program in DC metro area

August 2011:
Volunteer at the Montgomery Mental Health Center Suicide Hotline

May 2011:
Honors Thesis: The Role of Illicit Stimulant Use on Alcohol and Energy Drink Consumption

Jan 2009-May 2011:
Lead Sexual Health Educator for HealthWorks at the Penn State Student Health Center

Dec 2010-April 2011:
Volunteer interventionalist for the Friendship Group project at the Child Study Center

Oct 2007-April 2008:
Penn State Powerlifting Team

Awards/Honors received

May 2011–Schreyer Honors College Graduate
May 2011–Graduated with distinction
April 2011–Intramural Research Training Award
Spring 2008-Fall 2010–Six consecutive semesters on deans list
Aug. 2010-Jan. 2011–Schreyer Honors College: Wolf Trustee Scholarship
January 2010–College of Health and Human Development: Tewksbury Trustee Scholarship
June 2007–Graduated with high honors
June 2007–Science merit award