Each year, new students come to campus with a passion for learning, a wide range of interests and a diverse set of talents that make our community vibrant. Anthony Osuna, a first-year doctoral student in the Department of Counseling, Clinical, and School Psychology (CCSP), is excited to explore his interests in autism research with Dr. Ty Vernon and the Koegel Autism Center. In his spare time, he shares the adventures of his Corgi, Pavlov, on Instagram to an audience of over 50,000 followers. (You can follow Pavlov on Facebook and Twitter, too.) We had the opportunity to catch them both in between classes and learn more about what brings them to Gevirtz and what it’s like to have a famous pet.
GGSE: What made you choose the Gevirtz School?
Osuna: I decided to choose CCSP because of its diversity within the program, the department's research interests, and the graduate community. The CCSP program is unique in that it’s one of the only combined clinical, counseling, and school psychology departments in the nation. I was excited to be surrounded by different disciplines and faculty members who could provide me with different insights, research interests, and expertise. It was also appealing that the graduate students come from a diverse range of backgrounds, which makes me feel comfortable as a student and person.
GGSE: Describe your research interests in the field of clinical psychology and what you might like to do after graduation.
Osuna: My research interests are the intersection between culture and autism. I want to explore how to better understand and improve the experience of under-resourced families of children with autism. I'm still deciding exactly what I'd like to do after completing my Ph.D. I hope to continue exploring my research interests while maintaining relationships with the communities I hope to serve. I ultimately want to find a balance between academia, practice, and community partnerships.
GGSE: Now we have to ask about Pavlov and the incredible you’ve had response from your posts. First of all, what’s the story behind his name?
Osuna: When we got Pavlov, we were debating between the names Taco and Pavlov. Both my partner and I were psychology majors and so the name Pavlov was always entertaining for us. When we picked him up, we were set on the name Taco, but once we had him in our hands, we knew he was more of a Pavlov. It's also a more unique name, which helped inform our decision.
GGSE: Over 50,000 followers is no small feat. What has been your experience of having such a large online audience?
Osuna: The best part about having an "Instagram famous dog" has to be the awesome community of people and dogs that we've met. We've met some of our best friends through Instagram and having our dogs play together -- people we would have likely never met otherwise. There have been so many adventures that we would not have experienced had it not been for Pavlov. Along with making friends, we've built a community of fans and followers who have been amazing to interact with. While the Instagram is fun, it’s even more satisfying knowing that we bring joy to real people and being able to meet people from all over who enjoy Pavlov.
Welcome to the Gevirtz community Anthony and Pavlov!