Cerritos College
Cerritos College • Norwalk, Calif.

Talon Marks

Cerritos College • Norwalk, Calif.

Talon Marks

Cerritos College • Norwalk, Calif.

Talon Marks

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Amanda Perez inspires through her own research

Psychology major Amanda Perez has hopes to use her knowledge to benefit society and bring about positive changes.

Perez shares to the world her research presentations that teach people about different topics.

“When I start out deciding what to do research on, I like to choose relevant topics that will shed light on problems in society that should be addressed such as stereotypes,” Perez said.

She presented her research at the Southern California Conference for Undergraduate Research that took place last November.

After submitting her abstract work to the Southern California Conference, she was accepted to present.

“It was a truly surreal experience to present my research for the first time. It made me realize that I love my field of study and I love conducting research,” Perez said.

The research also brought her recognition from the National Psychology Honors Society for Community Colleges.

Perez explained that her research was came together by “information about the design and outcome of my experiment that I ran with children from the Child Development Center.”

It took her one semester to research and write it.

“I hope that they (people at the conference) realized just how much young children pay attention to societal cues given from their parents and the media about gender stereotypes,” Perez said.

Her work will continue to be presented at the National Conference on Undergraduate Research.

“I’ve been accepted to present my research on the impact of religious stereotypes on person perception,” Perez said.

Another conference she was accepted to is the Western Psychological Association Conference, where she will be presenting her research from the National Conference on Undergraduate Research.

She will “partake in presenting research on exploring the moderating effect of mindset on stereotype threat on statistics performance.”

Perez worked with three other students in conducting the research, including industrial/organizational psychology major Marco Antonio Contreras.

“We (the group) had significant findings which suggested that people of no religious affiliation are rated more negatively than people of the Islamic faith.

“This finding is insightful into how our society stereotypes in regard to religion and gives a basis for understanding why some groups are perceived more negatively than others,” Contreras said.

Twenty-two other students from Cerritos College will also present at the WPA Conference.

Perez has fun with her research because she is passionate about it.

Psychology professor Kimberley Duff describes Perez as “awesome.”

“Most students would be really nervous to present their work and to put themselves out there.

“She is really is a psychological scientist because she is really excited about the opportunity to present her research,” Duff said.

During her four semesters at Cerritos College, Perez has been an active member in Psychology Club, Active Minds and Scholars Honors Club,

“This is my fourth semester in SHP. Last semester I was VP and this semester I am president,” Perez said.

She has been in the Psychology Club for three semesters and enjoys going to the meetings and club outings, such as volunteering at Metro Hospital in Norwalk.

“It was overall a great experience. Although at first it was overwhelming to be in that environment. Throughout the day we (Psychology Club members) had a lot of activities with the patients there and seeing how much they enjoyed having us there really warmed my heart,” Perez said.

This is her fourth semester in Active Minds and second consecutive semester as club president.

Being committed to three different clubs, “Can be extremely overwhelming at times trying to balance all of my various commitments, but I never let myself give up.”

Perez said she spends time with her three year-old niece when she goes through stressful times. Her niece motivates her to do good in life.

This will be Perez’s last semester at Cerritos College. She has applied to universities such as Stanford, Harvard and Yale.

“I hope to attain my Ph.D in social psychology and get a job doing what I love, which is research.”

Duff said, “I have no doubt she will keep going to the top until she gets her Ph.D.”

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Rosaura Montes, Staff Writer
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Amanda Perez inspires through her own research