Jenni Menon Mariano, Ph.D.
College of Education
Office: USFSM B326
Jenni Menon Mariano is a scholar and practitioner in adolescent development. Her research focuses on the development of purpose in adolescence and the process by which young people become engaged morally, civically, religiously, and academically. Dr. Mariano earned her PhD from Stanford University where she was a member of Professor William Damon's research group at the Stanford Center on Adolescence. In 2007, she was a Positive Psychology Junior Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania where she engaged in a longitudinal study with Dr. George Vaillant, and in 2008 she received a Florida Campus Compact Engaged Scholar fellowship.
Dr. Mariano has conducted research in youth programs and schools throughout Europe, Canada, and the United States. She examines the personality, family, and community antecedents and correlates of positive youth development and youth thriving. She has published a variety of book chapters and journal articles on adolescent life goals and commitments; on the community and school's role in young people's moral development; and on how professionals accomplish work that is both excellent and ethical. Her most recent research examines the social supports of positive purposes in adolescents of all backgrounds, with a specific emphasis on populations of young people that are traditionally underrepresented in the literature.
Prior to coming to USF, Dr. Mariano coordinated a countrywide peacebuilding program in Bosnia-Herzegovina, where she worked with teachers, government, community, and media leaders, and the international community in response to the United Nations International Decade for a Culture of Peace and Non-Violence for the Children of the World.
Ph.D., Stanford University (2007; Child and Adolescent Development)
M.A., Landegg International University (2001; Moral Psychology and Education)
B.A., University of Toronto (1998; English Literature and East Asian Studies)
Mariano, J. M., Going, J., Schrock, K., & Sweeting, K. (under review). Youth purpose and perceived social supports among ethnic minority middle school girls. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Mariano, J. M. (under review). Finding and seeking purpose among ethnic minority girls: Sources and types of social support in adolescence. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Rushton, S., Mariano, J. M., & Wallace, T. L. (under review). Program selection among pre-service teachers: Influences of personality strengths and learning style. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Mariano, J. M., & Vaillant, G. V. (under review). Youth purpose among the “Greatest Generation”: A longitudinal prospective study. Manuscript submitted for publication.
Mariano, J. M., Roeser, R., Greathouse, P. T., & Koshy, S. I. (2010). Religious adolescents’ views ofsuccess and spirituality. In R. M. Lerner & A.E.A. Warren (Eds.). Positive youth development and spirituality: Research perspectives and future possibilities. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
Mariano, J. M. (2010). The psychological requirements of inclusion: A positive youth development view. In P. Jones, J. Carr, and J. Fauske (Eds.). Leading for inclusion. New York, NY: Teacher’s College Press.
Mariano, J. M., and Savage, J. (2009). Exploring the language of youth purpose: References to positive states and coping styles by adolescents with different kinds of purpose. Journal of Research in Character Education, 7(1), 1-24.
Mariano, J. M. & Damon, W. (2008). The role of religious faith and spirituality in the development of purpose in adolescence. In R. M. Lerner, R. W. Roeser, and E. Phelps (Eds.). Positive youth development and spirituality: From theory to research. West Conshohocken, PA: Templeton Foundation Press. pp. 210-230.
Lies, J., Bronk, K. C., & Mariano, J. M. (2008). The community contribution to moral and character education. In D. Narvaez & L. Nucci (Eds.). Handbook of Moral Development. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum and Associates. pp. 520-536.
Mariano, J. M., & Verducci, S. Ethical standards in philanthropy. (2006). In W. Damon & S. Verducci (Eds.). Taking philanthropy seriously: Beyond noble intentions to responsible giving. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press. pp. 222-240.
Damon, W., Menon, J. & Bronk, K. C. (2003). The development of purpose during adolescence. Applied Developmental Science, 7(3), 119-128.
Selected Research Presentations
Mariano, J. M. (accepted, 2011, February). Promoting youth purpose: Toward a theory and practice of social supports. Paper to be presented at the Evelyn M. Duvall Family Studies Conference, Sarasota, FL.
Mariano, J. M. (accepted, 2011, April). Finding and seeking purpose among ethnic minority girls: Sources of social support in middle school. Poster to be presented at the 2011 meeting of the American Educational Research Association (AERA), New Orleans, LA.
Mariano, J. M. (2010, November). Perceived social supports of civic and other expressions of purpose among ethnic minority adolescent girls. Paper presented at the 36th Annual Conference for the Association for Moral Education (AME), St. Louis, MO.
Mariano, J. M. (2010, November). Three problems in the study of youth purpose for college student development. Poster presented at the 36th Annual Conference for the Association for Moral Education (AME), St. Louis, MO.
Mariano, J.M., & Koshy, S. I. (2010, March). Measuring contribution to the “world beyond the self”: Overlapping issues in the empirical study of youth purpose and spirituality Youth purpose pre-conference roundtable, Society for Research on Adolescence (SRA), Philadelphia, PA.
Mariano, J.M., Roeser, R.W., Greathouse, P.T. & Koshy, S. I. (2010, January). What it means to be successful and what it means to be spiritual: Views of adolescents attending religious schools and organizations in the North Eastern United States. Poster presented at the 8th Annual Hawaii International Conference on Education, Honolulu, HI.
Mariano, J. M. (2007, September). The role of purpose in positive human development. Invited talk given at the Bahá’í Association for Mental Health Professionals (BAMHP), Davis, MI.
Menon, J. (2004, July). Authentic humility in philanthropists: A positive psychology view of good giving. Paper presented at the Second European Conference on Positive Psychology, Verbania Pallanza, Italy.
Damon, W., Bronk, K. C., & Menon, J. (2004, March). Youth sense of purpose. Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research on Adolescence. Baltimore, MD.
Menon, J. & Bronk, K. C. (2003, May). Commitment to transcendent ideals: Exploring youth purpose.” Poster presentation given at the Indicators of Positive Development Conference, Child Trends, Washington D.C.
2010 Fall Outstanding Professor Award Recipient
EDF 3122 Learning and the Developing Child
ESE 5342 Teaching the Adolescent Learner
EDG 6931 Moral Development and Character Education
EDF 6125 Child Development
EDF 6215 Learning Principles Applied to Instruction