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University of Phoenix College of Doctoral Studies releases whitepaper examining problem of diminished career expectations

By Sharla Hooper

Author Dr. Erik Bean shares potentials of reconnecting with self to enhance career and quality of life

University of Phoenix College of Doctoral Studies announces the release of a whitepaper examining the problem of career, compromise, and diminished expectations and the potentials of reconnecting to self and society in new ways for enhancing career and quality of life: “Reconnecting with Self and Outside Activities Add to Career Enjoyment, Happiness Levels.”

Erik Bean, Ed.D., associate research chair with the Center for Leadership Studies and Organizational Research at the University of Phoenix, authored this whitepaper which reviews the story arc of the Career Optimism IndexTM study to understand how American workers hold both optimism and reservation about their career trajectory, and then offers practical steps toward engagement with one’s career trajectory.

“Understanding perspective alongside working disposition is critical in fostering one’s prospects for happiness as equated to career,” states Bean. “What is important to remember is that what goes on during any given day on the job is not necessarily the last word on happiness and contentment. Reassessing your personality, finding other outlets that add to one’s viability such as giving back to your subject matter expertise in the form of grassroots efforts, community engagement, competing in professional contests, all while networking to open up new opportunities beyond the 9 to 5 typical work relationship, can add to happiness levels while strengthening one’s career identity.”

Bean holds a doctorate in education from the University of Phoenix, with research interests in bias, cultural competence, immediacy, leadership, and mental health. He is the section editor of Leadership Perspectives in The Journal of Leadership Studies, a publication by Wiley® that is sponsored by the University of Phoenix. He is the author of several educational books such as Social Media Writing Lesson Plans, Using Microsoft Word AutoCorrect for Rigorous Grading, WordPress for Student Writing Projects, and his most recent effort, Bias Is All Around You: A Handbook for Inspecting Social Media & News Stories.

The full whitepaper is available at the Career InstituteTM webpage or as a direct link here.

Bean has been employed with University of Phoenix for over 24 years.

About the College of Doctoral Studies

University of Phoenix’s College of Doctoral Studies focuses on today’s challenging business and organizational needs, from addressing critical social issues to developing solutions to accelerate community building and industry growth. The College’s research program puts students in the center of an effective ecosystem of experts, resources and tools to help prepare them to be a leader in their organization, industry and community. Through this program, students and researchers work with organizations to conduct research that can be applied in the workplace in real time.

About the Career Optimism Index™

The Career Optimism Index™ study is one of the most comprehensive studies of Americans’ personal career perceptions to-date. The University of Phoenix Career Institute will conduct this research annually to provide insights on current workforce trends and to help identify solutions to support and advance American careers. For the first annual study, more than 5,000 U.S adults were surveyed about how they feel about their careers at this moment in time, including their concerns, their challenges, and the degree to which they are optimistic about core aspects of their careers, their advancement in the future. The study was conducted among a diverse, nationally representative, sample of U.S. adults among a robust sample to allow for gender, generational, racial, and socioeconomic differences and includes additional analysis of workers in the top twenty media markets across the country to uncover geographic nuances.

About University of Phoenix 

University of Phoenix is continually innovating to help working adults enhance their careers in a rapidly changing world. Flexible schedules, relevant courses, interactive learning, and Career Services for Life® help students more effectively pursue career and personal aspirations while balancing their busy lives. For more information, visit