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I was an undergraduate at Oregon State University, where I began my life as a philosophy major. I have always been taken by the big questions in life-- What in life is ours to control?  What is the path to lasting happiness? Why do we do the things we do? I spent many late-night hours debating these issues with anyone who was around. I was fortunate to complete a post-doc at the Character Project at Wake Forest University, which let me further engage in this sort of questioning, this time in daylight and at a table with philosophers and other psychologists.

I became (and remain!) interested in the field of psychology because it allows me to explore the answers to some of these questions using the empirical method. More than that, though, psychological investigation can shed light on how people answer these questions for themselves in their everyday lives-- at home, in the workplace, and in social situations. I am particularly interested in understanding how people's beliefs about themselves and their place in the world affect their happiness and well-being, as well as the well-being of the people with whom they interact.

Growing up in Oregon instilled in me a great appreciation for beer, wine, food, and nature. I love playing the piano and I'm a great music enthusiast. I play fantasy baseball every year and usually lose because I tend to favor underdogs. I still read philosophy. My wife and I have a cat named Elmer, whom we adopted from the local SPCA where we volunteered during graduate school. Elmer plays fetch as well as any dog can.