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SHAARP Directors

Dr. Lesley Ross

Dr. Ross is a Professor of Psychology, the SmartLife Endowed Chair of Aging and Cognition, and the Director of the Institute of Engaged Aging at Clemson University. Dr. Ross was an Associate Professor of Human and Development and Family Studies at the Pennsylvania State University until 2020 when she joined Clemson University. Click here to read her research biography.

Secondary Appointments:

  • Affiliate Faculty, Center for Healthy Aging, Pennsylvania State University

  • Affiliate Faculty, Department of Psychology, University of Alabama at Birmingham

  • Visiting Faculty, Centre for Research on Ageing, Health & Wellbeing, Australian National University

Teaching Interests:

At the undergraduate level, Dr. Ross enjoys teaching Adult Development and Aging; Honors Research Methods; and Honors Professional Development. At the graduate level, she enjoys teaching Professional Development; Ethics Successful Aging; and Cognitive Aging, Assessment and Intervention. 

Conflict of Interest: None

Dr. Ross

Dr. Christy Phillips

Dr. Phillips is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology, Clemson Institute for Engaged Aging (IEA) Faculty Affiliate, and Clemson University School of Health Research Faculty Scholar. Dr. Phillips is the Co-Director of the SHAARP lab and has a broad background in promoting well-being and everyday functional outcomes among older adults. She has over 30 years of combined research and programmatic experience related to optimizing and preserving health and functional abilities across the lifespan. Dr. Phillips’s research focuses on understanding individual and environmental level influences on behavioral and functional outcomes and applying this knowledge in intervention design and implementation. Additionally, she studies emerging methods and technologies that can be used to measure these influences and outcomes.

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Dr. Phillips

Affiliated Faculty

Dr. Abigail (Abby) Stephan

Dr. Abigail (Abby) Stephan is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at Clemson and an affiliated faculty member at the Institute for Engaged Aging. She received her Ph.D. in Learning Sciences with a concentration in Lifespan Development from the Department of Education and Human Development at Clemson in 2022. Her research a) explores the influence of intergenerational relationships in family, community, and educational contexts on learning, development, and well-being across the lifespan and b) examines social and psychological factors that promote healthy aging. She is also interested in the development, implementation, and evaluation of evidence-based educational opportunities that support learners across the lifespan.

Dr. Stephan

Dr. Stephan

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