Maria Eugenia Panero, Ph.D., is the STEM Program Manager at Yale Young Global Scholars. Prior to this position, M. E. was a Research Associate at the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence. She received her Ph.D. in Social Psychology from Boston College with a Certificate in College Teaching. Her research explores the psychological effects of entering fictional worlds – through reading fiction, acting on stage, or watching a performance. Having previously worked as an actor, she is fascinated by what people gain from and experience when engaging in make-believe. She has analyzed the different impacts on psychological wellbeing, empathy, memory, and comprehension. Her award-winning work on how we understand others has been published around the globe and featured in major news outlets, such as CNN, Time Magazine, and The Atlantic. M. E. has also served on the editorial board for the American Psychological Association journal, Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, and as a Guest Associate Editor for a special issue on the psychological and physiological benefits of the arts in the journal Frontiers in Psychology.