Student Profiles, Uncategorized

Profile: Justin Park

Justin Park

Adult Learning, 2010 cohort

Research interests: 

I am interested in what enables adults to self-consciously continue what is termed ‘positive adult development.  Positive adult development is the ongoing development of adaptive capacities and well-being that may emerge throughout the adult lifespan.  My own research interests have focused on wisdom development: what it is in both its perennial and contextual expressions; what are the factors that comprise this domain; how it emerges; and how it may be facilitated.

Current research in the domain of wisdom development shows that it represents a range of capacities that emerge from a variety of ontogenetical and environmental conditions, as a set of adaptive capacities serving the ongoing resilience of the individual, and also their community and environmental context. 

As we find life continuing to become exponentially complex, and as human civilization finds itself needing to radically reinvent itself in order to survive beyond the next few decades (economically, ecologically, politically, etc.), we find this gestalt of capacities we call “wisdom” to be a highly relevant and critical source of resiliency in creating paths toward a just and sustainable planet.

Wisdom development is emerging as a critically vital capacity of both individuals, as well as communities, organizations, and systems.   I feel very fortunate to be in a context like this doctoral program at Lesley as it supports me in diving into these questions.

What are your personal and professional hopes/goals for your PhD jouney and beyond?

My hope is to work both within higher education again, supporting students who are leaders in their profession in both developing the capacities and practical tools to implement generative and creative change with their contexts, and also working with leaders and organizations in the field supporting their work in creating the just and sustainable…and creative planet that we most deeply want.

Has a particular book, author or thinker inspired your educational thinking?

There are so many…but if there was a book that I would hope received a wider audience, and that had a profound impact on me, that would be:

Kegan (1998). In over our heads: The mental demands of modern life.



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