Examining Positive Psychology in Communities (E.P.I.C. Lab)
Examining Positive Psychology in Communities (E.P.I.C. Lab) Overview
Incorporating Grand Canyon University’s mission statement to promote human flourishing, the E.P.I.C. lab is designed to focus on principles of positive psychology described by the work of Dr. Martin Seligman. Research initiatives focus on important elements of positive psychology connected to human flourishing, including resilience, mindfulness, coping strategies, and self-efficacy. Combining both basic and applied psychology, research projects in the E.P.I.C. laboratory examine the effectiveness of implementing elements of positive psychology in organizations throughout Arizona to improve overall community wellness and promote individual flourishing. Ongoing Projects: Examining the effectiveness of Trauma Informed Care Programs in building resilience and decreasing substance abuse in adolescents Examining the benefits of volunteerism in college students through the Changing Lives Outreach Organization Examining the relationship between mindfulness, stress, and well-being in college students Examining the benefits of yoga programs for undergraduate students in terms of mindfulness, stress, and well-being.
Dr. Magen Branham is from St. Louis, Missouri and currently resides in Phoenix, Arizona. She obtained a BA in Psychology from Columbia College, and a MS in Psychology from Arizona State University. Dr. Branham's focus is primarily in quantitative psychology, specifically experimental design. She currently teaches Experimental Psychology, Statistics, and the Psychology Senior Capstone courses at GCU. Magen received her PhD from GCU, and has since been conducting research focused on positive psychology and community enhancement.
Dr. Eric Peterson, has worked for GCU since 2012 and has been a season ticket-holder for GCU basketball and Ethington Theatre for the last 11 years. He and his wife have been married for 29 years and have two adult daughters. His oldest is a GCU alumna, and his youngest is preparing to come to GCU next semester. Dr. Peterson holds a bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies with an Emphasis in Relational Communication from Arizona State University, a Master’s in Business Administration with an Emphasis in Marketing from University of Phoenix, and a Doctor of Philosophy in General Psychology with an Emphasis in Integrating Technology, Learning, and Psychology from GCU. In addition to teaching PSY-255, Eric teaches General Psychology (PSY-102), Experimental Psychology (PSY-452), and PSY-885, PSY-955, PSY-960, and PSY-965 as a dissertation chair for the College of Doctoral Studies. Outside of higher education, his passion is coffee, which culminated in purchasing a 400-lb stainless steel coffee roaster he bought in Sandpoint, Idaho in 1999. Eric now roasts coffee in his backyard in a shed he built to house the coffee roaster.