Mikaela Miele



I am from Lake Tapps, Washington and I’m currently an undergrad junior at NMSU. I am on the swim team here, and I am double majoring in kinesiology and psychology. I plan to go to PT school after I finish my undergrad and I hope to become a Physical Therapist. Psychology is so interesting to me and there are a variety of ways where that can be incorporated into physical therapy and neuromuscular function.


Project Description:

The project that I will be working on deals with robots and their interaction with humans specifically in the social aspect. Robots have increasingly grown more prevalent over the years and have proved to be useful to our society today. People can still be uncomfortable around them because they’re intellectual machines that are capable of a variety of things. I will be looking deeper into different scenarios where humans and robots interact and how they differ among one another.



  • Project description, timeline, and milestones developed with mentor; on file with DSP
  • Complete half of project milestones
  • Complete project
  • Present scholarly work at URCAS
  • Attend a professional conference (without presenting)
  • Take the GRE
  • Author or co-author a manuscript submitted for publication
  • Apply for graduate or professional school


Mikaela’s mentor: Marlena Fraune

Dr. Marlena R. Fraune received her B.A. in Psychology at Beloit College in 2013, and her PhD at Indiana University in 2018. During her time in the PhD program, she researched the psychology of how to make human-robot more efficient and enjoyable. Dr. Fraune studied intergroup human-robot interaction nationally and abroad, as a visiting researcher at Toyohashi University of Technology (2014, 2016), Bielefeld University (2015), and the United States Air Force Research Lab (2017). She is now an Assistant Professor leading the Intergroup Human-Robot Interaction Lab in the Department of Psychology at New Mexico State University.