Rosanna Breaux, assistant professor of psychology in the College of Science at Virginia Tech, has been named the Jerry L. Hulick Faculty Fellow for Special Needs, Disabilities, and Inclusion by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

The fellowship was established through a gift from Jerry Hulick (political science B.S. ’73) to recruit, develop, and retain outstanding faculty whose research, teaching, outreach, and/or public policy efforts positively impact the disabilities and special needs communities. Hulick, who served as general agent of The Washington Group of MassMutual from 1986 to 2004, also founded The Washington Group Special Care Planning Team, specializing in financial planning for individuals with special needs. He previously served on the board of the Virginia Tech Foundation and on the advisory board for the Virginia Tech Center for Autism Research

Hulick has also served on both the Dean’s Roundtable of the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences and the College of Science Dean’s Roundtable Advisory Board. In 2016 he was named a member of the College of Science Hall of Distinction.

A member of the Virginia Tech community since 2019. Breaux was named director of the Virginia Tech Child Study Center in 2021, after serving as the assistant director beginning in 2019.

A central focus of her research, clinical work, mentoring, and community outreach is supporting individuals with special needs and disabilities, particularly youth with neurodevelopmental disorders such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Her research encompasses three major themes among neurodevelopmental disorder populations: youth emotional regulation development, emotion socialization parenting practices, and interventions for youth with ADHD. 

She has published 68 publications in peer-reviewed journals and 30 invited or keynote presentations. Her scholarship has been recognized having earned several awards including the Rising Star award from the Association for Psychological Science, an appointment as a Child Intervention, Prevention, and Services (ChIPS) Research Institute Fellow, and the CHADD (Children and Adults with ADHD) Young Scientist Research Award.

Breaux’s research program has been supported with both internal and external funding. Since coming to Virginia Tech, she has already been principal investigator or co-principal investigator on seven grants from a variety of agencies including the Society for a Science of Clinical Psychology, the American Psychology Association Committee on Early Career Psychologists, and the university’s Institute for Society, Culture, and Environment and Center for Peace Studies and Violence Prevention.

Breaux earned her bachelor’s degree from Carnegie Mellon University in 2011 and a master’s degree and Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2013 and 2017, respectively. She completed a research postdoctoral fellowship at Virginia Commonwealth University before joining Virginia Tech.

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