Erina Lee knew, ever since her days as an undergraduate psych major, that she wanted to study romantic relationships, but she was not sure what career path would lead her there. She heard of a position at E-Harmony through the DBOS jobs posting. After completing her doctoral dissertation, it was only a matter of months between graduation and the research job she had dreamed of. "I’m in the job of helping people enhance their relationships and doing so on a wide scale. The most exciting part is that I get to study romantic relationships every day and propose studies about important aspects of relationships."
One such upcoming study will focus on the effects of laughter in relationships. In a field that has focused heavily on the negative factors affecting romance, Erina’s work focuses on the building of stronger ties through shared laughter. "People can be so serious and sometimes too focused on conflicts," Erina reports. "Having a good time within your relationships is also essential."
Dr. Lee says that the freedom she enjoyed while pursuing her Ph.D. paved the way for her career at a for-profit research lab. Part of this freedom was the ability to accept a full-time, paid position with Kaiser Permanente Health Care Services. "I was able to work while finishing up my program in Claremont, and learn about research and psychology in an applied setting."
"I was also asked questions like ‘How do your research findings apply to the greater public?’ and ‘How will you distribute this knowledge?’ By learning to answer these questions and discovering more about relationships each day, I absolutely feel that I am in the business of helping people."