I am currently a doctoral student in Sociology and Demography at The Pennsylvania State University. My primary research and teaching interests are U.S. social stratification and mobility, the sociology of mental health, medical sociology, and the sociology of the life course. I am especially interested in how processes of stratification and social mobility have changed over time, and its implications for health and mental health over the life course.
To date, my research has focused on the dynamic relationship between processes of stratification and mental health. With Michelle Frisco and Molly Martin, I have worked on projects that examine adolescent body weight and mental health, which have been published in Social Science Quarterly and The Journal of Health and Social Behavior. I have also received two awards for my work that examines how intra- and inter-generational social mobility influence mental health across the life course (published in Social Science Research and Research in Social Stratification and Mobility). I am also collaborating with colleagues on ongoing research the psychological impact of sexual harassment during adolescence and adulthood (with Jeremy Staff, Amy Blackstone, Jeylan Mortimer, and Chris Uggen). In other recent research I investigated the mechanisms that explain why depressed persons die younger than non-depressed persons (Presented at the 2010 PAA Conference).
My dissertation investigates how the rise in credit has affected young adults. Specifically, I examine changes in the amount and type of debt possessed during young adulthood across three cohorts of young adults in the 1970’s, 1980’s, and today. I am particularly interested in understanding how debt accumulation in young adulthood influences socioeconomic attainment and wealth acquisition over the life course.