We are excited to welcome Assistant Professor Stefan Uddenberg to the Department of Psychology faculty starting in Fall 2024! Dr. Uddenberg will be primarily affiliated with the Attention & Perception area.
Can you briefly share your academic and professional background that led you to the Department of Psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign?
Born and raised in Trinidad and Tobago, I started on my academic journey as a Cognitive Science and Japanese Studies double major at Dartmouth College, where I did my thesis work with Prof. Won Mok Shim. I stayed on as her lab manager for a further 2 years, then went on to graduate school at Yale under the tutelage of Brian Scholl. I was then fortunate to join Alex Todorov as a postdoctoral fellow at Princeton. He would soon move to the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, where I'm finishing up my position before joining UIUC in Fall 2024.
Looking ahead, what do you hope to achieve during your time at UIUC's Department of Psychology? Are there any long-term goals you're aiming for?
My goal is to help elucidate how we see, remember, and think about the (social) world around us. I'm hopeful that, together with my students and collaborators, we can make some small steps toward understanding the basic mechanisms of social perception and their downstream consequences for society more broadly. To that end, we will likely need to build entirely new software and methods along the way. We'll do so with an eye toward making tools that are useful to the research community at large. I'm especially excited to help train the next generation of cognitive scientists at such a storied department.
On a personal note, what do you enjoy doing outside of your academic and professional life? Any hobbies, interests, or experiences you'd like to share?
I enjoy going to concerts, playing all manner of video games, biking and walking amidst nature, and rowing (although these days that's mostly an indoor activity for me).