Our Team

The PREP Team is comprised of clinicians and researchers who hope to advance the field of early psychosis.

Stephan Taylor, M.D.

Director, PREP
Professor of Psychiatry

Stephan F. Taylor, M.D., is Professor of Psychiatry and adjunct Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan.  He also serves as co-associate for Research and Research Regulatory Affairs in the Department of Psychiatry.  He directs the Program for Risk Evaluation and Prevention.  His research uses brain imaging, brain stimulation and behavioral techniques to study psychosis, particularly early psychosis, and to develop and improve treatments for psychiatric disorders.

Ivy F. Tso, Ph.D., L.P.

Clinical & Training Director, PREP
Assistant Professor of Psychiatry

Dr. Tso is Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Adjunct Assistant Professor in Psychology at the University of Michigan. She is a licensed clinical psychologist, overseeing the clinical operation and clinical training of PREP.  Dr. Tso's research examines how important social information is processed in people with mental illness (particularly schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and psychosis) using behavioral experiments, neuroimaging (EEG/ERP, fMRI), and brain stimulation (TMS). 

Cynthia Burton, Ph.D., L.P.

Clinical Lecturer

Dr. Burton is a neuropsychologist with a particular research interest in cognitive training interventions for people with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, to help people improve their thinking skills and ultimately everyday functioning. Clinically, she provides neuropsychological assessment to adults with a range of neurological and psychiatric concerns.

James Svensson, LMSW

Therapist / Case Manager

Jim Svensson is a licensed social worker for the Program for Risk Evaluation and Prevention (PREP) and a variety of other clinics in the Department of Psychiatry, including the Crisis Support Clinic. Jim provides family psychoeducation and other evidence-based Interventions to patients with psychosis.

Alyssa Smith, LLP

Therapist/Case Manager

Alyssa Smith is a limited licensed psychologist for the Program for Risk Evaluation and Prevention clinic (PREP) and a variety of other clinics for the Department of Psychiatry. Clinically, she provides CBTp, family therapy and case management for young adults with early psychosis. Additionally, she conducts research assessments and provides educational trainings to community agencies on how to identify early psychosis in young adults.

Elizabeth Walters, MMS, PA-C

Physician Assistant

Elizabeth is a board certified Physician Assistant with an additional specialty board certification in Psychiatry.  She provides medication management for the Program for Risk Evaluation and Prevention (PREP) as well as a variety of other clinics in the Department of Psychiatry. 

Tyler Grove, Ph.D.

Psychology Post-Doctoral Fellow

Dr. Grove completed his Ph.D. in Clinical Science at the University of Michigan, his clinical internship at the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System, and joined the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Michigan as a postdoctoral fellow in September 2018. He has clinical expertise in cognitive-behavioral therapy for psychosis, anxiety disorders, and sleep disorders, along with recovery-oriented and transdiagnostic psychosocial treatments. His research examines the impact of cognitive and affective factors on social functioning in people with a serious mental illness using behavioral and psychophysiological methods.

Takakuni Suzukim Ph.D.

Psychology Post-Doctoral Fellow

Dr. Suzuki completed his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Purdue University and his clinical internship at the University of Mississippi Medical Center. He joined the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Michigan as a postdoctoral fellow in September 2019. His research interests are in understanding mental illness in a broad transdiagnostic dimensional model, specifically by leveraging advanced statistical techniques and various measurement methods (e.g., questionnaire, physiological). His clinical interests are in treating commonly co-occurring mental illnesses, such as psychosis, depression, substance use, and trauma.

Laura Stchur, M.S.W.

Research Manager

Laura Stchur, MSW, is a clinical research manager for Dr. Steve Taylor, MD, in the Department of Psychiatry. Laura has worked on numerous NIH clinical trials on bipolar disorder, depression, and anxiety spectrum disorders, in addition to coordinating research teams in multiple pharmaceutical-sponsored clinical drug trials on schizophrenia and psychosis. Recently, her focus has been on the study of anxiety disorders, specifically OCD. Laura is currently managing a clinical trial led by Dr. Kate Fitzgerald, MD, investigating the treatment effects of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) on OCD in adolescents.

Carly Lasagna, B.A.

Research Coordinator

Carly Lasagna is a research coordinator for Dr. Ivy Tso, facilitating various studies using neuroimaging (e.g. fMRI) and brain stimulation (e.g. TMS) to examine perception and social cognition in populations with psychosis. These include such studies as: the Neural Mechanisms of Gaze Perception in Psychosis, the Effects of Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) on Cognitive Task Performance, and a TMS Investigation of Neural Mechanisms of Gaze Processing. She has continued work in research since earning her B.A. in Psychology from the University of Michigan in 2016, pursuing her interests in studying cognitive mechanisms in psychosis.

Kristen Ward, PharmD

Clinical Assistant Professor

Kristen Ward, PharmD, is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan College of Pharmacy who works with the PREP team on research projects. Her research interests include identifying mechanisms of, and risks for developing, medication side effects. The ultimate goal of her team’s research projects is to improve safe medication use for patients with serious mental illness.

Cortney Sera, MA

Clinical Research Coordinator

Cortney Sera is a clinical research coordinator for Stephan Taylor, MD and Sagar Parikh, MD in the Department of Psychiatry. She manages a clinical trial investigating a novel treatment for attenuated psychosis syndrome (BI 1289-32) for Dr. Taylor, a biomarker development clinical trial of ketamine for treatment resistant depression in unipolar or bipolar depression (Bio-K Study) and a new treatment for major depression (Redwood Study) for Dr. Parikh. Additionally, she conducts research assessments and works as a liaison to clinicians assisting with the clinical trials she coordinates. Cortney received her BS in brain, behavior, and cognitive science from the University of Michigan and her MA in clinical psychology from Columbia University.

Pan Gu, B.A.

Research Coordinator

Pan Gu is the research coordinator for Dr. Ivy Tso and Dr. Stephan Taylor. She recently completed her BA in neuroscience at Colorado College and joined the University of Michigan Department of Psychiatry in September 2019. She helps facilitate multiple research using neuroimaging and brain stimulation methods to investigate social cognition. Pan's research interest is in understanding the underlying neural mechanism behind serious mental illness. In particular, to examine social cognition between populations with and without a history of psychosis using behavioral and neuroimaging methods. In the future, Pan plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology with a focus on neuropsychology.