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Student Section

Make ISTSS Your Professional Home

Welcome to the ISTSS Student Section. Did you know student members receive unique benefits and opportunities to enhance their knowledge of research and training in trauma?

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Student Membership Has its Benefits!

  • Save more than $100 on your annual membership fee
  • Save more than $100 on the Annual Meeting registration fee
  • Take advantage of discount rates for ISTSS Online Education Program (webinars, expert trainings and Advanced Training Certificate Program)
  • Enjoy discounts on selected publications from Taylor and Francis, a leading source of trauma journals and texts
  • Receive the Journal of Traumatic Stress and Traumatic StressPoints eNewsletter
  • Access the student listserv - post questions, receive student and trainee related announcements (e.g., postdoctoral fellow positions), provide information and communicate with peers who share similar interests
  • Access to the Members-only section of the website, featuring diagnostic scales and a searchable membership directory of members
  • Access to Members Only online resources - including adult and child assessment instruments, treatment manuals and other validated tools to assist the busy clinician and researcher
  • Eligibility for the Frank W. Putnam Trauma Research Scholars Award ($1,000), Student Travel Fund for the Annual Meeting and Student Poster Awards
  • Ability to join a Special Interest Group (SIG)
  • Opportunity to serve in leadership role for Student Section or the Annual Meeting Organizational Committee
  • Volunteer and engage with leaders in the field of traumatic stress across all committees and Special Interest Groups

Student Section Leadership

Student Section Chair, 2019-2021

Lia J. Smith, M.A., is a fourth-year doctoral student in Clinical Psychology at the University of Houston working under the direct mentorship of Dr. Anka Vujanovic. Lia received a B.A. in psychology from Wheaton College in 2013. While there, she also earned a certificate in Human Needs and Global Resources for her research with trauma-exposed women and children in Huánuco, Peru. More recently, Lia studied biopsychosocial mechanisms related to alcohol and e-cigarette use with Dr. Andrea King at the University of Chicago. She also was a behavioral health intern with Dr. Karla Torres at Lawndale Christian Health Center, an inner-city primary care clinic on Chicago's west side. Lia received her M.A. in clinical psychology from the University of Houston in 2018. Her current research interests focus on the risk (e.g., sleep disturbance, distress intolerance) and resilience (e.g., coping humor, hope) processes at the intersection of substance use disorder, trauma, and health disparities. Lia has acted as the Student Co-Chair for the ISTSS Trauma and Substance Use Disorders SIG since 2018, and currently serves as the ISTSS Student Section Chair.

Student Section Vice Chair, 2019-2021

Anne M de Graaff, M.A., is a third-year doctoral student under the supervision of dr. Marit Sijbrandij and prof. dr. Pim Cuijpers at VU University in Amsterdam (NL). She obtained BSc/BA degrees in Psychology and Cultural Anthropology, and MScRes in Clinical and Health Psychology at Leiden University (NL). Anne has a keen interest in the field of global mental health, and more specifically in conflict-affected populations. She was an intern at vivo international in Uganda and at the Research Program for Children and Adversity at Harvard University with dr. Theresa Betancourt and dr. Felicity Brown. She worked as junior researcher for HealthNet TPO in South Sudan and did her clinical internship at the Dutch national center for psychotraumatology (Centrum ’45). Her PhD research focuses on the evaluation of a scalable, psychological program for Syrian refugees in the Netherlands, and is part of the EU Horizon2020-funded STRENGTHS project in countries in Europe and the Middle East.


Leadership for the student section includes a Chair and Vice Chair, who oversee the section, plan student-focused activities and events for the annual conference (including luncheons, internship and postdoc networking fairs, panels, presentations, and other social events) and manage the student awards.  These individuals are elected into these positions by the student membership and serve two-year terms.