Center for International Education
December 2006

Barbara White, Associate Professor of Occupational Therapy

Professor Barbara White is studying the potential effects of stress on child development. In June, she traveled to London, England, to meet with Dr. Vivette Glover, professor at Imperial College and researcher at the Institute of Reproductive and Developmental Biology.

 

Barbara White
Professor Barbara White in London.

Stress is such a pervasive word in our language that it seems easily understood. However, the human stress response is a complicated matter, and highly individualized based on the nature of threat, one's perceptions of threat, and one's resources to deal with the threat.

I am interested in the potential effects of stress on child development, and even more interested in learning if we can intervene early, during pregnancy, with women who report high perceived stress. I am part of a collaborative group of faculty researchers at UNH who, this past spring, have been given Presidential Excellence Award funds to initiate a pregnancy stress reduction project. In order to refine the project on stress reduction intervention as well as to establish the beginnings of a possible research relationship, I met with Dr. Vivette Glover in London this past June. Her research is extensive in the area of stress physiology and human development. I was able to see the Institute, meet a variety of students working on different projects, and visit with Dr. Glover at the Institute. Dr. Glover's input has been invaluable in shaping our pilot research project that will launch sometime this fall. For the full report, visit http://www.unh.edu/cie/faculty/faculty_travelrpts_index.html.