Graduate Student Spotlight Award winner – Winter 2014-15

Congratulations to Aimee Hildenbrand

By Katherine Donlon, MS

Aimee Hildenbrand is a third-year doctoral student at Drexel University (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) under the mentorship of Brian Daly, PhD. Hildenbrand has an impressive track record of research, clinical and leadership endeavors within the field of pediatric psychology. Her research focuses on pediatric populations including children with acute injuries and chronic conditions (e.g., pain, sickle cell disease, cancer). Within these populations, Hildenbrand has examined important areas of investigation including coping, etiological and risk factors and the development and evaluation of Web-based interventions. For example, she conducted a master’s thesis project examining relationships between acute pain, opioid medication use, and posttraumatic stress after pediatric injury. Currently, Hildenbrand is designing a dissertation study to examine the interactions between quantity, type and timing of adverse life experiences; posttraumatic stress; and chronic pain in youth. She has presented her research at international and national conferences and has already amassed 16 peer-reviewed publications (six as first author). As a result of her passion, productivity and commitment to empirical pediatric research, Hildenbrand has received several prestigious awards, including the Doctoral Research Excellence Award from Drexel as well as a Pain SIG Poster Award from SPP.

Hildenbrand’s commitment to the field and those it serves extends beyond research to include clinical care. Hildenbrand has provided evidence-based intervention and neuropsychological assessment services for children and families presenting with acute and chronic health conditions, trauma, developmental, cognitive, and learning issues, and mental health concerns. In addition to her various research and clinical leadership roles, Hildenbrand is also very involved in promoting pediatric psychology through professional activities within SPP. She serves as both a Student Advisory Board member on the Membership Committee and as a graduate student representative for the Hematology/ Oncology/ Bone Marrow Transplant SIG.

Hildenbrand plans to apply for internship in October 2015. Her career aspirations include conducting rigorous translational research and providing empirically based clinical services, with a focus on the intersection between trauma and pediatric health conditions, particularly chronic pain.