Principal Investigator

Kelly S. Giovanello, Ph.D. | Google Scholar

Kelly was born and raised in Carver, Massachusetts. She completed her BS degree in Biology at Stonehill College (1995), MS degree in Neuroscience at Brandeis University (1996), and Ph.D. in Neuroscience at Boston University (2003). She spent three years as a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University and the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging (2003-2006). In 2006 she became a faculty member at UNC Chapel Hill in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience and started the Cognitive Neuroscience of Memory Laboratory. She is now a tenured Professor in the Department and serves as the Associate Director of the Biomedical Research Imaging Center at UNC Chapel Hill. Her research interests center on understanding the cognitive processes and neural mechanisms that give rise to human memory, and how mnemonic processes change across the adult lifespan. In her free time, Kelly enjoys spending time with her husband and two children, reading fiction series, and gardening.

Graduate Students

Aslihan Imamoglu | CV | Twitter | Google Scholar

Aslihan was born and raised in Samsun, Turkey. She moved to Northern Virginia in 2014 to pursue higher education in the United States. She completed her B.S. in Psychology with a concentration in Clinical Psychology at George Mason University. At George Mason University, she worked on several research projects, during which her tasks ranged from conducting behavioral testing with tau transgenic mice to interviewing socially anxious adults about their stressful life events and emotion regulation strategies. Aslihan is currently a 4th year graduate student at UNC-Chapel Hill in Cognitive Psychology, studying episodic memory impairments in children and adolescents genetically at-risk for schizophrenia with particular focuses on context processing and pattern separation. In her free time, Aslihan enjoys painting, woodworking, and rock climbing.

Min Sung Seo | CV |

Min Sung was born and raised mostly in Seoul, South Korea. He completed his B.S. in Psychology with a concentration in Neuroscience at the Pennsylvania State University. At Penn State, he worked on research projects investigating various aspects of episodic memory in aging at the Cognitive Aging & Neuroimaging Lab. Currently a 3rd year doctoral student in Cognitive Psychology at UNC – Chapel Hill, Min Sung studies the effect of age in various aspects of episodic memory both at the behavioral and the neural level. During his free time, Min Sung likes to play sports, LOL, and watch movies.

Jennifer Fiedler

Jenny was born and raised in Northern Virginia and completed her B.S. in Psychology at the College of William & Mary. At William & Mary, she worked in an Autobiographical memory lab on research projects investigating the effects of doodling on mind-wandering and later memory retrieval and completed her honors thesis on the self-reference effect. After graduation, she worked as a Clinical Research Coordinator at the A.A. Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging in Boston, where she used several neuroimaging techniques to evaluate the neural mechanisms behind attention and auditory working memory maintenance. Jenny is currently a 1st year doctoral student in Cognitive Psychology at UNC-Chapel Hill, studying episodic memory updating with an emphasis on contextual reinstatement and subjective awareness of change. In her free time, Jenny enjoys rock climbing, hiking, and watching Premier League soccer.


Research Assistants

Aleya Monsalve

Aleya was born in Medellin Colombia, but moved to North Carolina in 2005. She visits her home in South America when she can. Aleya is currently a 2nd year undergraduate student completing a Biology B.S. major with a minor in Neuroscience and Music at UNC-Chapel Hill. In the Cognitive Neuroscience & Memory Lab, she has been helping in studies regarding memory and aging. Outside of school, Aleya works as an EMT running medical calls at her local fire station. She also enjoys painting and playing music.

Lauren Medlin

Lauren Medlin was born and raised in Wilmington, North Carolina. She completed her B.S in Biology and Neuroscience December 2021 at UNC-Chapel Hill. During her final semester, she aided in grading cognitive assessments performed in the Cognitive Neuroscience & Memory lab. She plans to apply to UNC Medical School Summer 2022 and pursue a career as a neurologist. When she isn’t studying or doing research, Lauren enjoys drawing, painting, working on her car, and volunteering with the Red Cross.

Hua Bai

Hua was born and raised in China. She came to the United States in 2019. After two years of studying at the University of Oregon, she transferred to UNC-Chapel Hill in 2021. Hua is now a senior majoring in Psychology with minors in Neuroscience and Data Science. Hua is interested in clinical and cognitive fields. Currently, she is working on a research study about developmental pathways to substance use and addiction, particularly among children of parents struggling with addiction. In the Cognitive Neuroscience of Memory Lab, she mainly helps run experiments and related tasks for memory reactivation and new learning projects. Hua enjoys hiking, painting, watching anime, and doing crafts in her spare time.

Macy Faw

Macy was born and raised in Rockingham, North Carolina. She is now a junior at UNC-Chapel Hill majoring in Psychology and Information Science, and minoring in Statistics and Analytics. Macy is mostly interested in cognitive and personality psychology research. In the Cognitive Neuroscience of Memory Lab, she assists in study development and running experiments for memory reactivation. Outside of school and the lab, Macy enjoys running, traveling, listening to Taylor Swift, painting, and watching UNC sports.

Lab Alumni

Stephanie Langella, Ph.D.
Felipe De Brigard, Ph.D.
Ilana Dew, Ph.D.
Jaclyn Hennessey Ford, Ph.D.
Chris Foster, Ph.D.
So-Yeon Kim, Ph.D.
Will Moore, Ph.D.
Weichun Wang, Ph.D.
Eleanna Varangis, Ph.D.
A. Leslie Vaughan, Ph.D.


Wei-Tang Chang, Ph.D.

Aysenil Belger, Ph.D.

Eran Dayan, Ph.D.

Elizabeth A. Kensinger, Ph.D.

Weili Lin, Ph.D.

Christopher Wahlheim, Ph.D.

Hongtu Zhu, Ph.D.

Mieke Verfaellie, Ph.D.

Kathleen Welsh-Bohmer, Ph.D.

Roberto Cabeza, Ph.D.








Lab Pets


Goliath provides emotional support to the remaining members of the lab by making copious amounts of biscuits. When he is not napping in funny spots, Goliath can be found synthesizing new research ideas. Most specifically, he is interested in studying the effect of encoding strategies on treat-giving behavior in healthy aging.



Tuckerman is a wonderful yellow labrador that supports all scientific efforts in the Cognitive Neuroscience of Memory Lab by providing moral support to the remainder of the research team.