Daniel Spina

Daniel Spina

First-Year Graduate Student


Biography:

Dan is a first-year student in the Clinical Psychology program at Penn State. He grew up in Fresno, CA and received his B.A. in Philosophy and French from UC Berkeley. Following undergraduate studies, he volunteered as a crisis counselor for Alameda County Crisis Support Services and worked as a transcranial magnetic stimulation technician in Oakland, CA and New York City. He then studied at Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology in New York, where he will receive his master's degree in Clinical Psychology. He was also an extern at South Beach Psychiatric Center, Fort Hamilton, in Brooklyn where he provided individual and group psychotherapy. He is broadly interested in psychotherapy process research and Transference-Focused Psychotherapy. He hopes to better understand therapeutic processes that lead to greater attachment security and improved defensive functioning in patients with personality disorders. He is also interested in LGBTQ+ mental health and his master’s thesis at Ferkauf focused on how to better support patients struggling with BPD and sexual identity uncertainty. He also has interests in neuromodulation and the philosophy of language. Dan loves fermenting foods, reading, jogging and listening to music in his spare time.