First-generation student; President of the Boston University Graduate Student Organization; Lifestyle Blogger; Author.
Arcadia is in the third year of pursuing her Ph.D. at Boston University. She specializes in the impacts of early adversity on cognitive development - specifically memory development. Ultimately, she hopes to be able to use science to advance education policy so that children from disadvantaged backgrounds get the opportunities they need to succeed academically.
In 2014, Arcadia became the first in her family to graduate high school and pursue a 4-year college education. She credits her parents for motivating her toward this accomplishment. Despite being born with fewer privileges and opportunities than their peers, her parents, Paul and Danyle, still prioritized education. After her birth, they knew they had to set an example, so her father went back to night school for four years to earn his associate's degree. She often laughs that this speaks both to his dedication and her mother's dedication, who had to stay home with the newborn baby each night. Now, her parents are both successful in their careers. In fact, Paul currently sits as the President of the Maryland Society of Surveyors. She is both remarkably proud of them and inspired by their lives.
Motivated to take advantage of every opportunity her parents weren't given, Arcadia made the most of her time in undergrad. While studying at the University of Maryland, she worked three jobs while taking 20 credits per semester. In addition, she was an executive board member for the Alpha Beta chapter of Phi Sigma Pi National Honors Fraternity and a volunteer chairperson for Primmanum Honors Society. After realizing her passion for science, she also served as a research assistant in the Language Music Cognition Lab, Maryland Psychotherapy Clinic and Research Lab, and Neurocognitive Development Lab. She graduated with honors from the University in 2018. Arcadia has continued her educational journey at Boston University, where she previously earned her Master's Degree and currently works towards her Ph.D. She is a two-time recipient of the Clara Mayo Memorial Research grant and has presented her research nationally and internationally. Passionate about supporting other students, she is also currently in her second term as President of the Boston University Graduate Student Organization and sits on four administrative committees with leaders of the University. Nationally, she sits on the board of the National Association for Graduate-Professional Students.
Outside of academia, Arcadia has stayed active in her community. After personally experiencing dating violence at 14 years old, she has become a voice for change. She has spent countless hours creating educational resources through her social media campaign Learning to Love, led psychoeducational groups for children living in domestic violence shelters, published a children's book to teach preschoolers about consent, and coordinated fundraising efforts in conjunction with Casa Myrna and Jane Doe Inc. She currently advocates for dating violence prevention as Miss Boston 2023, within the Miss America Organization. Arcadia has earned nearly $10,000 in scholarship funds from Miss America and looks forward to competing for the title of Miss Massachusetts in June 2023.
You can find her reading, working on her young adult novel, knitting, or watching true crime in her free time.