Faculty & Staff

Sean Brotherson, Ph.D.

Sean BrothersonExtension Family Science Specialist, Professor

(Ph.D., Oregon State University)

Office Phone(701) 231-6143Email: sean.brotherson@ndsu.edu 

Core Area: Family Science 

Research Interests: Parenting and fatherhood; Health marriages; Family stress; Rural families; Grief and bereavement; Family life education; Family policy 

Developmental Science Program

Kim Bushaw, M.S.

Kim Bushaw, Extension Family Science Specialist 

(M.S., North Dakota State University) 

Office Phone(701) 231-7450 


Core Area: Family Science

Jim Deal, Ph.D.

James E. Deal, Professor

(Ph.D., University of Georgia) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-7568 

Email: jim.deal@ndsu.edu 

Core Area: Child Development  

Research Interests:  My current research focuses on identity development in emerging adults, particularly in the areas of religion and the transition to college. I am particularly interested in first generation and/or low income students and issues related to financial support.  

Developmental Science Program

Heather Fuller, Ph.D.

Heather Fuller , Associate Professor 

(Ph.D., University of Michigan) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-5621 


Core Area: Adult Development and Aging 

Research Interests: Social relationships and well-being across the lifespan (e.g. intergenerational relationships); Successful aging and health promotion; Aging in rural and cross-cultural contexts; Aging families and caregiving; Survey research and program evaluation 

Research Lab:Linked Lives Lab

Developmental Science Program

Joel Hektner, Ph.D., Department Chair

Joel Hektner, Professor and Head 

(Ph.D., University of Chicago) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-8269 

Email: joel.hektner@ndsu.edu 

Core Area: Child, Adolescent Development 

Research Interests:

Design and effectiveness of programs to prevent adjustment problems and promote well-being in children and adolescents; Peer affiliation patterns and peer influences on children's behaviors; Family and school conditions that facilitate optimal experiences (flow) and optimal development; The Experience Sampling Method

Developmental Science Program

Carrie Johnson, Ph.D.

Carrie Johnson,  Extension Personal and Family Finance Specialist, Associate Professor 

(Ph.D., Iowa State University) 

Office phone: (701) 231-8593 


Core Area: Personal and Family Finance Extension 

Research Interests: Personal finance for low-income and underserved populations; Financial education impact; Student loan debt: Program delivery methods and evaluation; Behavioral finance across the lifespan.

Christi McGeorge, Ph.D.

Christi McGeorge, Professor

(Ph.D., University of Minnesota) 

Office Phone(701) 231-7335 

Email: Christine.McGeorge@ndsu.edu 

Core Area: Couple and Family Therapy and Family Science 

Research Interests Include: The influence of heterosexism, cissexism, and sexual and gender minority prejudice on clinical practice and training, gender equity in therapy, promoting LGBTQ ally behavior in collegiate athletics, gender equity in higher education, and societal perceptions of single parents.

Melissa Lunsman Connor, Ph.D.

Melissa Lunsman O'Connor, Associate Professor

(Ph.D., University of South Florida) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-8268 


Core Area: Adult Development and Aging 

Research Interests: Examining age-related differences and changes in cognitive and functional abilities, such as driving, among healthy adults and clinical populations; quantitative methods and psychometrics; interventions for improving cognition, health, and everyday functioning; and attitudes toward dementia. 

Research Lab: Healthy Aging Lab 

Developmental Science Program

Candace Philbrick, Ph.D.

Candace Philbrick, Senior Lecturer

(Ph.D., North Dakota State University) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-8268 


Core Area: Gerontology 

Meagan Scott Hoffman, Ph.D.

Meagan Scott Hoffman, 4-H Youth Development Specialist/Assistant Professor

(Ph.D., Oklahoma State University) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-7964 


Core Area: 4-H Youth Development 

Area of Responsibility: Family and Consumer Science, Communication Arts, Afterschool Training, Adolescent Development, Children, Youth, and Families at Risk

Jane Strommen, Ph.D.

Jane Strommen, Extension Gerontology Specialist and Assistant Professor of Practice

(Ph.D. North Dakota State University) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-5948 


Core Area:  Gerontology  Website:  Aging & Wellness

Research Interests:  Family caregiving, rural elders, aging in place, healthy aging  


Wen Wang, Ph.D.

Wen Wang, Assistant Professor

(Ph.D. Michigan State University) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-1875 


Core Area:  Child Development 

Research Interests:  The development of young children’s mastery motivation and persistence; Cultural variances in parenting and early parent-infant communication; Prosocial behaviors and emotions towards racial ingroup and outgroup members

Ann Werlinger, M.S.

Ann Werlinger, Senior Lecturer

(M.S., North Dakota State University) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-9790 

Email: Ann.Werlinger@ndsu.edu 

Core Area: Child Development

Dena Wyum, M.S.

Dena Wyum, Senior Lecturer: Human Development and Family Science and Women and Gender Studies

(M.S., North Dakota State University) 

Office Phone: (701) 231-7755 

Email: Dena.Wyum@ndsu.edu 

Andrea Abrahamson, Academic Advisor

Andrea (Richard) Abrahamson, M.Ed.

Academic Advisor | College of Human Sciences and Education

Office Phone: 701-231-9846

Email: andrea.a.abrahamson@ndus.edu

HDFS Staff

Krista Olson

Krista Olson, Administrative Secretary, HDFS Extension
Office Phone: 231-8652
Email: Krista.L.Olson@ndsu.edu

Maggie Skrogstad

Maggie Skrogstad, Office Manager, HDFS
Office Phone: 231-8268
Email: Maggie.Skrogstad@ndsu.edu

Top of page