The University of Massachusetts Amherst
University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Steering Committee

Sara Whitcomb

Sara Whitcomb headshot
Assistant Professor, Education (Student Development)
Family Research Scholar, 2011-12


Sara Whitcomb's research interests include implementation of mental health promotion and positive behavior support efforts in schools, and behavioral and instructional consultation. During her Family Research Scholar year, Dr. Whitcomb developed a proposal to research “The Impact of Implementation of a Social-Emotional Curriculum and Parent Training Program on Preschool Children Identified as Behaviorally At-Risk.” 

This research was particularly relevant to family research in that it aimed to identify how families and schools may align in their efforts to feasibly promote the healthy social-emotional development of young children.

Maureen Perry-Jenkins

Maureen Perry-Jenkins headshot
Professor, Psychological and Brain Sciences
CRF Faculty Director
Family Research Scholar, 2006-07


Maureen Perry-Jenkins is a nationally renowned scholar whose contributions on the national, state, regional and university levels have had a profound impact on family research. Her work focuses on the ways in which socio-cultural factors such as race, gender, and social class shape the mental health and family relationships of parents and their children.

Using a longitudinal research methodology, Perry-Jenkins's research examines the work and family experiences of blue-collar families, with particular attention to the experiences of people transitioning to parenthood, their early return to paid employment and the effects on working-class parents' psychological well-being and personal relationships. As a CRF Scholar, Dr. Perry-Jenkins continued to work on her research considering the unique challenges facing low-income families as they juggle the demands of work and new parenthood. She was named CRF Faculty Director in Fall 2013.