Aja is a first-year M.A. student in UCCS’s Clinical Psychology program. She holds a B.A. in Psychology from UCCS and was awarded the 2023 Student Achievement Award. She also earned the Top Scholar Award at Mountain Lion Research Day while serving as a lead undergraduate research assistant for the Lyda Hill Institute of Human Resilience, working with Dr. Littleton.
Aja has a strong commitment to youth advocacy and collaborates with several community organizations to implement and support youth programs. She is also designing the Poetry as Life Practice project, aiming to enhance the creative writing curriculum to foster coping skills among grade school students.
In addition to her academic pursuits, Aja is an accomplished musician and performer, renowned nationally and internationally for her band, The Reminders. She has been a featured speaker and musical guest for several organizations, including TedX, the Denver Non-Profit Convention, The Boys and Girls Club of America, Citizens Project, Youth On Record, UCHealth, Education Through Music, and the Laboratory to Combat Human Trafficking.
Aja’s research will examine the relationship between trauma, cognition, and creativity by exploring representations of trauma in popular media. Her goal is to eventually obtain a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and use her background in creativity to assist others in navigating traumatic life experiences through adaptive coping strategies. Aja received the UCCS Graduate Research Fellowship and is a member of the Graduate Research Academy and the Graduate Student Association.