Second Step Violence Prevention Team

Fall 2013

Paul Bueno de Mesquita, PhD, is a professor of Psychology and Director of the Center for Nonviolence & Peace Studies at the University of Rhode Island. For more than thirty years Paul has worked as a professional psychologist and advocate for children’s mental health. He specializes in violence prevention and positive psychological development, particularly in under-represented and underserved low-income communities. A Level III nonviolence trainer, he directs the annual International Nonviolence Summer Institute. A native Texan, Paul has been a life-long musical activist and singer/songwriter for peace, justice and nonviolent social change.

Kay_000Kay Johnson Bueno de Mesquita teaches in the School of Education and supervises student teachers at the University of Rhode Island. She teaches preservice teachers how to infuse nonviolence into children’s literature, connecting story themes to King’s Six Principles of Nonviolence. Kay was trained in the process of nonviolence by Dr. Bernard LaFayette, Jr.  Together, they have written a book,In Peace and Freedom, about his civil rights experiences during the Voting Rights Campaign in Selma, 1963-1965.


Lacey FeeleyGreetings!  My name is Lacey Feeley and I am currently a social work graduate student intern at the Center for Nonviolence and Peace Studies at URI.  I am also a certified biology and science teacher and have taught in schools in Louisiana, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island.  I am also the Assistant Director of the SMILE Program (Science and Math Investigative Learning Experiences), a pre-college STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) program that prepares 4th-12th graders for college.  I am excited to be part of this wonderful Second Step team to help build positive learning and social skills in your students!

Hello Everyone! My name is Jennifer N. Barrientos and I am senior majoring in Psychology at the University of Rhode Island. I am also a part of the Women’s Soccer team at URI! I am originally from Northridge, California and my parents are from Guatemala. I am interested in becoming part of Law Enforcement once I graduate from URI.



Hello! My name is Jenna Porcaro and I am a psychology and sociology double major at the University of Rhode Island. I am currently a senior and I hope to go to graduate school next year for school psychology. I am interested in working with social skills and behavior in elementary age children. I am here to conduct the second step program, which is doing just that! I am very excited to get started and promote positive interactions in your classrooms! Thank you for having me!


Hi! My name is Meena McGowan. I am currently a junior at the University of Rhode Island; and, I am majoring in both psychology and nursing. I hope to continue my education and get my master’s degree in pediatrics. I have always enjoyed working with children. I began babysitting at a young age and continue to do so, in addition to my courses. Thank you for giving me and my peers the opportunity to teach the Second Step Program in your classroom. I truly look forward to beginning the program, and seeing the positive impact it will have on your students.