About the Executive Committee
1) The Executive Committee’s responsibilities include:
(a) Formulating policies;
(b) Acting on the behalf of SIPPA in accordance with the SIPPA Constitution; and
(c) Providing all administrative oversight and directions as needed.
2) The Chair, Chair-Elect, and Past-Chair will serve for one year.
3) The Communications Representative, Membership & Recruitment Representative, and Conference Planning Representative will serve for a two-year term.
4) Executive committee members should complete their term prior to graduation.
Sonia White, President
Sonia has a Master of Applied Positive Psychology from the University of Melbourne and a Master of Coaching Psychology from the University of Sydney. She is passionate about helping people to achieve their goals, drive positive change and maximise their potential. Sonia became a coach after a 15-year successful career in the pharmaceutical industry. More recently, as the mother of a young child, she has become inherently interested in working in child development and family flourishing. This shift inspired Sonia to further her graduate studies through Monash University in Melbourne to achieve psychology registration.
Sonia joined the student division in 2018 in the role of Conference Lead. In this capacity, she coordinated student events for the 6th World Congress on Positive Psychology in July 2019. After the conference, Sonia moved into the President-Elect role and in March 2020 became the President. Sonia brings a wealth of experience to this role from her professional career and postgraduate qualifications. She is committed to building a global network that students who can learn from each other and the broader positive psychology community.
Lisa Kamsickas, President-Elect
Lisa Kamsickas is a graduate student at Northwestern University studying how to increase positive emotion and how positive emotion can buffer from the negative effects of stress. Though a Detroit native, she earned her undergraduate degree in psychology from the University of St Andrews in Scotland. As SIPPA’s President-Elect, Lisa is enthusiastic to represent and support the students in the International Positive Psychology Association. Feel free to reach out to her with any questions, ideas, or jokes; she would be happy to hear from you!
Ketaki Diwan, Immediate Past President
Ketaki Diwan is a graduate student in Social Psychology at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Ketaki is from India where she completed a masters in I/O Psychology. Ketaki is currently a research assistant at Amsterdam Interdisciplinary Centre for Emotion. Her research is focused on socio-cultural shaping of distinct positive emotions. Ketaki believes that positive emotions are subtle but powerful in their own way. She is keen on discovering how people from different cultures share positive emotions in different yet effective ways. Ketaki’s goal as SIPPA President is to create engagement, opportunities and networking channels for students of positive psychology from all corners of the world.
Morgan Campbell, Student Communication Lead
Morgan Campbell is a postgraduate student at the University of East London, studying the positive effect of coaching psychology interventions on female survivors of sexual violence. Originally from Wales, Morgan achieved her joint honours undergraduate degree in Anthropology & Psychology from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland. As SIPPA’s Communications Lead, Morgan’s goal is to develop innovative ways through which to share all things positive psychology by utilising SIPPA’s social media platforms. Morgan is very much looking forward to collaborating with the SIPPA team over this coming term!
Annie Wilkins, Student Resource Lead
Annie is a 3rd year undergraduate psychology student at the University of St. Andrews, Scotland, and is originally from Sheffield, England. Her interest in positive psychology led her to become a director at the student-led company Here for Sport, which is working to increase diversity and provide equal access and opportunities to individuals who wish to participate in and benefit from sports. A passionate classical musician, Annie is hoping to spend her final years at St. Andrews researching the psychology of music and its benefits on wellbeing. In the future, she is looking at undertaking a research masters back in England. Through her role at SIPPA, Annie hopes to increase engagement and create tangible resources for other students who are interested in positive psychology to draw from.
Monica Elvira Gutierrez Mesino, SIPPA Regional Representative
Monica Elvira Gutierrez Mesino is a psychology student at Universidad Nacional Abierta y a Distancia, UNAD in Barranquilla, Colombia, student researcher at Kaamash (UNAD’s Research hotbed group/ Psychology, Emotional development and Education Research Group), freelance translator Spanish-English-Spanish since 1999.
She has been working as Human Resources Coordinator in her family’s small business since 1993. As part of the company where she works, she has obtained Grants to develop machinery for the company, she has leader Innovation Projects. She is certified as Assistant on Innovation at GIM Institute (Global Innovation Management Institute) and She has performed as freelance translator for several national e international organizations, including E3 Partners, formerly called Global Mission Fellowship.
Monica’s primary objective is to share well-being with other people, well-being that comes from exercising a purposed life, based on the virtues and character strengths that are promoted in Positive Psychology. Psychology Professional Practice under supervision. Professional translation book “Mindfulness Based Strengths Practice a practical guide to flourishing”. SIPPA Regional Representative.
Currently, Monica is working on her project based on the development of virtues and character strengths through Mindfulness-Based Strengths Practice (MBSP) in middle school teachers at Eustorgio Salgar, Atlantico, Colombia.
Rémi Thériault, Regional Representative (Québec)
Rémi Thériault obtained his B.A. Psychology and M.Sc. Psychiatry from McGill University, Montréal, Québec. His undergraduate research has principally focused on exploring the mind-body connection through the placebo effect and the malleability of the sense of embodiment. His Master’s research focused on psychological strategies to increase empathy and reduce intergroup prejudice, such as taking others’ perspective using virtual reality technology. His current doctoral research at UQAM explores ways to boost altruism and reduce aggression through loving-kindness meditation. Overall, Rémi is passionate about putting social-psychological research to use to increase people’s wellbeing and intrinsic motivation to help one another.