Meet the Lurie College Faculty | Cara Maffini

Cara’s research encompasses intersections of culture, mental health, and trauma particularly among adolescents and emerging adults with a focus on underserved populations.  She has three main lines of research: (a) understanding psychosocial, cultural, and developmental protective and risk factors associated with trauma (e.g., violence, victimization, and campus safety); (b) examining refugee experiences and intergenerational transmission of trauma; and (c) examining bicultural and biracial experiences and identity development.  Grounded in her training in counseling psychology, Cara’s research serves to inform campus and community-based intervention and prevention programs.  Read Cara’s full profile below and listen to Cara’s personality playlist on the Lurie College Spotify account!

Associate Professor, Child & Adolescent Development
Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, Indiana University
M.A., Psychology, Sacramento State University
B.A.S., Psychobiology and Dance, UC Davis
Recent Publications
West, M. T.,* & Maffini, C. S. (2019). ‘What are you?’ Conceptualizing the complexities of bicultural and biracial college student experiences. Journal of College Counseling, 22, 164-178. doi: 10.1002/jocc.12128
Linares, J.,* & Maffini, C. S. (2018). Voces de resistencia: Exploring Salvadoran students’ experiences and needs in higher education. Journal of Hispanic Higher Education. Advance online publication. doi:10.1177/1538192718814129
Maffini, C. S. (2018). Campus safety experiences of Asian American and Asian international college students. Asian American Journal of Psychology, 9, 98-107. doi: 10.1037/aap0000087
Maffini, C. S., & Pham, A. (2016). Overcoming a legacy of conflict: The repercussive effects of stress and intergenerational transmission of trauma among Vietnamese Americans. Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma, 25, 580-597. doi:10.1080/10926771.2016.1182955
Maffini, C. S., & Wong, Y. J. (2015). Feelings About Culture Scales: Development, factor structure, reliability, and validity. Cultural Diversity & Ethnic Minority Psychology, 21, 213-224. doi:10.1037/a0037647
Recent Presentations
Maffini, C. S. & Jennings, R. (2019, May). Addressing the pervasive legacy of transgenerational trauma. Educational Session presented at the annual California Association for Licensed Professional Clinical Counselors (CALPCC) Conference, Northridge, CA.
Maffini, C. S., & Dillard, K. (2018, August). Psychological safety: Exploring racial group differences in violence and safety on college campuses. In C. S. Maffini’s (Chair), Culturally-responsive support for youth of color amidst traumatic experiences. Symposium conducted at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association (APA), San Francisco, CA.
Areas of Research Interest
Adolescents / emerging adults
Campus safety
Communities of color
Intergenerational transmission of trauma
Psychological well-being / mental health
Recommended Reading

About the Author

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