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SAU psychology department adds Gianico

By Maria Dalmasso
Communications Assistant

Laurinburg, NC - St. Andrews University’s Department of Natural and Life Sciences added Dr. Jennifer Gianico as an Assistant Professor of Psychology this fall.

“I was seeking employment at a small liberal arts school that focused on teaching undergraduates,” Gianico said. “St. Andrews reminded me of the type of undergraduate education I received. I wanted to share my experience with learning with current students.”

Gianico attended Siena College in Loudonville, New York for her undergraduate education, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts, Magna Cum Laude in psychology and a minor in Spanish.

She went on to attend University of Albany, SUNY for both her master’s and doctorate in cognitive psychology.

Gianico’s research interests include emotion and cognition, autobiographical memory, and tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon.

“This research has been part of my life for a while now,” said Gianico. “I still get really excited about it and find ways to slip it into conversation.”

Tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon is experienced when a word feels ‘stuck,’ but recall is imminent.

“It’s very frustrating, you feel annoyed, and often ask others for help,” Gianico said. “Most people, across languages and cultures, have experienced it.”

  Dr. Jennifer Gianico

Tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon can vary in frequency. People who are bilingual tend to experience it more and older people experience more than those in their younger years.

Gianico has said that if she could teach any course she would teach research methods in Psychology.

“It is a very hands on course – students get to see how psychology is ‘done,’” said Gianico. “It is the course that really opened my eyes to the possibilities in my future. Many students who ‘hate’ research come to at least appreciate it after taking this course.”

Of course, Gianico isn’t always teaching. She is a bargain shopper, a crafter, and a DIY enthusiast. She loves traveling and prefers to take car trips, so she can bring her dog on the road with her.

“I actually worked as a make-up artist at a Bobbi Brown cosmetics counter while in graduate school,” Gianico said. “I enjoyed working for the company because part of it included teaching clients how to apply make-up. I think I’d be doing that if I wasn’t teaching.”

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