Enhancing communication across communities

Ph.D. candidate Andrew Guydish awarded the Fredrico and Rena Perlino Memorial Scholarship

Andrew Guydish (Crown ‘16, cognitive science, M.S. psychology, Ph.D. psychology)

A Santa Cruz County native, Andrew Guydish (Crown ‘16, cognitive science, M.S. psychology, Ph.D. psychology) always viewed UC Santa Cruz as the perfect place to earn his undergraduate and graduate degrees.

Guydish received his BA in cognitive science in 2016 and then pursued a MA in research and experimental psychology from San Jose State University. Afterward, he returned to UCSC to earn an MS in psychology. After years of study, Guydish was awarded the Fredrico and Rena Perlino Memorial Scholarship at UCSC.

The Fredrico and Rena Perlino Memorial Scholarship honors and supports students working towards enhancing communications across communities including deaf and mute populations. The scholarship is supported by the late Fredrico and Rena Perlino, whose estate supports the Santa Cruz community. 

A graduate student researcher in psychology, Guydish works to understand communication. His current focus is on conversational dynamics. Thanks to the support from the Fredrico and Rena Perlino Memorial Scholarship, Guydish can take his research in new directions.

“In previous work, I’ve shown some pretty awesome effects, and this work is a follow up to those previous studies,” he said. “I’m really excited about the potential results, and the Fredrico and Rena Memorial Scholarship will allow me to pursue those ends with peace of mind!” 

Guydish currently works in spontaneous communications under Dr. Jean E. Fox Tree, and hopes to become a professor after earning his Ph.D.

Guydish’s knowledge of psychology has been especially valuable during the massive cultural shift caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Guydish served as a reference for The Atlantic’s and The Telegraph’s coverage of how quarantines and remote communication changed our understanding and the function of conversations. He continues to investigate the big question of conversation in his research at UCSC.

“What makes you leave a conversation saying “that was a great conversation” versus “that was a bad conversation”? I’m trying to find out!”

Guydish hopes current students will take the opportunity to truly dive into Santa Cruz’s unique landscape.

“Immerse yourself in the campus culture,” he said. “We have some of the best, nicest, and smartest people in all areas working here at UC Santa Cruz. In addition, we have a gorgeous campus which makes attending school here a whole different experience compared to elsewhere.”