Head in the Department of Psychology at Texas A&M University. She received a Ph.D. from the University of California, Irvine, in 2007. Her research focuses on emotional processes as a foundation of behavior and thought, especially the role of affective reactions and emotions in how people think about the future and how particular emotions improve functioning and decision-making. Professor Lench’s work on affective reactions and optimism received an American Psychological Association New Investigator Award and is currently funded by the National Science Foundation. Dr. Lench is also a scholar in the working group Virtue, Happiness, & the Meaning of Life funded by the John Templeton Foundation.