University of Georgia, College of Family and Consumer Sciences
Kenneth J. White is an assistant professor in the Department of Financial Planning, Housing and Consumer Economics at the University of Georgia. He joined the UGA faculty in 2016 after receiving his PhD in Consumer Sciences, with a focus on Family Resource Management from The Ohio State University. Dr. White also holds degrees from Belmont University (Master of Accountancy) and Wayne State University (BA in Mathematics). Before pursuing his doctoral degree, Dr. White worked in public accounting, investments, and for the Internal Revenue Service.
Stress impacts both physical and mental health, but people vary in their ability to cope with stress. The inability to cope with stress has been shown to negatively impact health through digestive problems, headaches, sleeplessness, fatigue, depression, anxiety, anger, and/or irritability. Continued stress can lead to other serious health problems such as viral infections, the flu, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, depression, and anxiety disorders.
In addition to physical and mental impacts, stress created by financial challenges and uncertainty has been shown to be associated with significant impairments in emotional health, relationships among household members, academic achievement at school, and production at work. Sturgeon et al referred to financial stress as a “powerful source of everyday stress.” Understanding factors relating to financial stress and activities that lessen its effects creates a healthier, more economically viable community.
This project examines factors that contribute to and inhibit financial stress and its impact on health, well-being, and health equity across populations. Financial stress is measured subjectively, objectively, and experimentally. I will explore subjective and objective measures of financial stress and interventions that lessen the effects of financial stress, including racial differences in the factors and interventions.
Why did you apply to New Connections
I applied to New Connections in order to gain professional development, networking, support and collaboration through New Connections, while developing a relationship with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, which will go a long way toward advancing my career and connecting me with like-minded scholars.
I study financial behaviors and financial attitudes of individuals and households. In particular, I am interested in less affluent populations, which tend to include minority and lower socioeconomic households. I am interested in the impact that conceptual/theoretical frameworks such as socialization, social capital, and sustainability have on personal financial behaviors and attitudes, which lead to overall well-being.
White, K. J., Heckman, S. J. (2016). Financial Planner Use Among Black and Hispanic Households. Journal of Financial Planning, 29(9), 42-51.
- New Connections Status: Junior Investigator
- Award Year: 2018
- RWJF Team/Portfolio: Creating Healthier, More Equitable Communities
- Project Name: Factors Related to Stress from Finances