When you think of the most hopeful person you know do you think of someone who always expects the best, someone with faith in something bigger than themselves, or someone with great drive to achieve their goals? Psychologists describe hope as having the agency to achieve goals and being able to come up with the pathways to achieve them. In our lab we want to learn more about what hope means to people, and how young people can develop hope in the context of their relationships with supportive adults.
Is there someone in your life who supported you in achieving your goals made a positive impact in your life? Teachers, relatives, friends, and colleagues make an important difference in the lives of young people very day. In our lab, we aim to understand the networks of people that support college students in achieving their goals and the important functions that these mentors play in their lives.
"And in this quest for what is best, positive psychology does not rely on wishful thinking, self-deception, or hand waving; instead, it tries to adapt what is best in the scientific method to the unique problems that human behavior presents in all its complexity."
- Martin Seligman