UC Santa Barbara has selected Michael Furlong of the Gevirtz School to be one of two Edward A. Dickson Emeriti Professors for 2021-2022. The substantial funds associated with the Professorship may be used to support the research, recall teaching appointment, or public service of the holder of the Professorship.
Dr. Furlong will lead a collaboration in which the California Department of Education, WestEd, and the GGSE will support the development of reports about the impacts of distance learning on student wellness. Using California Healthy Kids Data, including the Social Emotional Health Survey-Secondary (SEHS-S) that Dr. Furlong developed during his career, his team will produce a series of reports to inform the community about the current state of California students’ well-being. In addition to providing needed information to schools and communities to improve conditions for California students, this partnership will provide additional linkages between key stakeholders and decision-makers across the state of California.
“The research in the coming year will provide opportunities for additional mentorship of more junior faculty and students, while also enhancing the visibility of the GGSE as a leader in student mental health for the state of CA and within the UC system,” Furlong says of the overall project. “Our collective work will provide fact-based reports to inform and promote relevant and much-needed public policy to guide the mental health support of youth and help lead to more of our state’s youth flourishing.”
Key to the project is that Dr. Furlong will provide mentorship for current UC faculty conducting research in the area of student mental health. There is a core group of faculty in all UC school psychology programs who share school mental health interests related to training, prior research experience with the SEHS-S, and common educational practices. Drs. Stephanie Moore and Eui Kim, UCSB Gevirtz School alumna, recently received school psychology faculty appointments at UC Riverside. Dr. Chunyan Yang, a former UCSB school psychology faculty and current collaborator, is now on the school psychology faculty at UC Berkeley. Dr. Erin Dowdy conducts mental health research at UCSB and will continue to collaborate on this project in addition to mentoring UCSB students. Dr. Karen Nylund-Gibson in the Department of Education will continue to collaborate with the data analysis work. The unique data sets created by this project will be available to these junior UC faculty and their graduate students to support their research endeavors. By December 2021, Dr. Furlong will organize a virtual meeting with GGSE and other UC faculty to coordinate the development of manuscripts that report on the effects of the remote learning prior to, during, and after COVID-19 instructional modifications.
Michael Furlong is a distinguished professor emeritus & interim co-dean emeritus of UC Santa Barbara’s Gevirtz School. Furlong also served as Associate Dean for Research of the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education (2016-18) and as a Professor and Chair in the Department of Counseling, Clinical, and School Psychology. He taught in the GGSE from 1982-1985 and 1990-2018. He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (Division 16, School Psychology) and the American Educational Research Association. Between 2008-2015 he was the Editor of the Journal of School Violence and co-edited three volumes of the Handbook of Positive Psychology in the Schools (2009, 2014, 2021). He carries out his research with colleagues in the International Center for School-Based Youth Development. He earned his Ph.D. from UC Santa Barbara.