Examining Milestones in Emotion Regulation, Growth, & Education (EMERGE)
in First-Year College Students at CU Boulder

Dr. June Gruber, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience, University of Colorado Boulder

About the Project:

The EMERGE project addresses a critical and growing nation-wide concern regarding the mental health and well-being of college students. Recent research suggests an alarming increase in the rate of mental health challenges, substance use problems, and behavioral difficulties among college-aged adults. The World Health Organization reports that 1 out of 5 college students meet criteria for psychiatric problems and the National Survey from the Association for University and Counseling Center Directors surveys indicate that up to 44% of college students report seeking help for adjustment issues. There is hence a critical need to prioritize research that helps better understand adjustment difficulties during college and translate this information to enhance student well-being and success. The EMERGE project aims to examine multiple aspects of emotional health, decision-making, and academic performance in CU students over the first year of college. In partnership with the Office of Undergraduate Education, the University Exploration and Advising Center, the Center for STEM Learning, the College of A&S Academic Advising Center, and the Office of Data Analytics at CU Boulder we aim to study the incoming Freshmen CU cohort and follow them over the first year of college. We aim to use a diverse approach that incorporates survey measures, laboratory tasks assessing emotional functioning and decision-making, and mobile smartphone-based experience-sampling methods that capture experiences in the daily lives of college students. We will make special efforts to sample and enhance representation of diverse and/or underrepresented students on campus as well. This will help us make much-needed steps to bridge findings with real-world educational performance and functioning outcomes critical to success among college students during the transition to college. We strive to translate these findings back to college students themselves and university administrators; we aim to disseminate workshops and courses geared towards college-student well-being, and engage discussions with the university community to support and expand campus policies that enhance the potential for success and thriving among CU’s students.

About the Project Director:

June Gruber, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at the University of Colorado and the Director of the Positive Emotion and Psychopathology Laboratory. Dr. Gruber received her Ph.D. from UC Berkeley and was faculty at Yale University before moving to CU Boulder. She has authored over 90 articles and chapters that focus on emotion, happiness, and psychological-health in young and middle-aged adults with and without a history of mood difficulties and is the Interim Editor-in-Chief of one of the top journals in her field, Perspectives on Psychological Science. Dr. Gruber teaches courses on emotion, happiness, and abnormal psychology and has a new mentoring column for students in Science Careers. Dr. Gruber is engaged in public outreach on emotion and mental well-being, and has created an online course in Human Emotion available freely through YouTube and has given a public TEDx talk on the “dark side” of happiness. She is devoted to advancing careers for underrepresented women in the sciences. You can reach her by email at: june.gruber@colorado.edu

Interested IN Supporting the EMERGE Project?

You can donate NOW to support this research:




Sponsored by:

Seeking Co-Sponsors!