At the Thrive Institute for Professional Development, our mission is to empower researchers and academics to thrive in their professional journey by providing transformative knowledge, innovative solutions, and personalized support. We are dedicated to helping our clients overcome challenges, unlock their full potential, and create a life at the intersection of happiness, wellness, and success.
Our vision is to become the foremost global resource for researchers and academics, recognized for our unwavering commitment to driving sustainable transformation in the academic landscape. We aim to inspire success and foster wellness among our clientele, creating an environment where researchers can flourish, achieve success, and make a lasting impact on their respective fields.
We are driven by the belief that researchers and academics have the power to make a meaningful difference in the world. Our mission is to provide the tools and support needed to turn that potential into reality. Through our transformative programs, researchers gain access to evidence-based strategies, time-tested solutions, and innovative ideas that propel their careers forward. Our personalized approach ensures that each client receives tailored support, addressing their unique challenges and empowering them to overcome obstacles. We recognize that a successful and fulfilling career in academia extends beyond professional achievements. By integrating personal and professional growth, we aim to create an environment where researchers can thrive not only in their work but also in their overall well-being. We believe that by empowering researchers to find harmony in their lives, they can achieve long-term success and sustainable transformation.
We envision a future where researchers and academics feel empowered and supported, knowing they have a dedicated resource to turn to for guidance and growth.
By fostering an inclusive community, we aim to connect researchers from diverse backgrounds, sparking collaboration, networking, and knowledge exchange. We aim to be at the heart of a thriving ecosystem that nurtures researchers' personal and professional advancement. Our commitment to quality, integrity, and positive impact drives us to make a lasting difference in the lives of those we serve. We envision a future where researchers can envision a life of fulfillment, happiness, and success at the intersection of their passions and professional aspirations.
Jasmine Abrams, PhD
Founder & CEO
Dr. Abrams is an international behavioral research scientist at Yale University School of Public Health. Dr. Abrams is fiercely dedicated to sexual health promotion among women of African ancestry and conducts her work with the goal of utilizing culture as an avenue to better understand and reduce health disparities.
She has managed large-scale grant funded projects and secured institutional and federal funding to support her sexual health research and programming with women of African ancestry. In addition to her academic endeavors, Dr. Abrams is a serial entrepreneur who has founded four companies in the last 5 years. Her experience in entrepreneurship has largely informed her approach to coaching early career faculty in academia.
Gretchen initially began her career as an Executive Assistant. Her journey in the corporate world provided her with a unique perspective on organizational dynamics, an acute attention to detail, and the skills required to manage complex projects with precision. However, it was her passion for travel and her deep-seated love for connecting with people that eventually led her to chart a new course in her career. Recognizing the potential to merge her professional expertise with her personal passions, she made a bold move to establish her own consulting business. As the Founder and CEO of Upper Echelon Consulting Group, Gretchen has seamlessly transitioned her background in executive support and project management into the realm of retreat production and coordination. In addition to being a minority business owner, Gretchen is also tremendously grounded in her faith and a true advocate for the transformative power of retreats.
Tiffany Carson, PhD
Dr. Carson is an Associate Professor in the Division of Preventive Medicine in the Department of Medicine at the UAB School of Medicine. She is also an Associate Scientist in the UAB Nutrition Obesity Research Center, the Diabetes Research Center, the Minority Health and Health Disparities Research Center, and the O’Neal Comprehensive Cancer Center at UAB. As an applied epidemiologist, Dr. Carson has a breadth of research experience with a central theme of population-based, bio-behavioral observational and intervention studies for obesity treatment and cancer prevention.
Dr. Carson is currently the PI of 3 NIH-funded studies and has published in multiple peer- reviewed journals including Obesity, Psychosomatic Medicine, and JAMA. In addition to her research portfolio, Dr. Carson has nearly a decade of experience mentoring scientists at varying career stages. She is the former Co-Director of the UAB Department of Medicine Early Career Mentoring Group. She has also led regional and national workshops focused on trainee and faculty development.
Faye Belgrave, PhD
Content Consultant, Workshop Facilitator
Faye Belgrave, Ph.D., is a Professor in the Department of Psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University. As the Associate Dean for Equity and Community Partnerships, she is responsible for the development and implementation of a plan for improving diversity, equity, and inclusion. In addition, she is responsible for elevating and promoting the College's community-engaged research and teaching. Dr. Belgrave is also the founding director of the Center for Cultural Experiences in Prevention. Her research is on health disparities, focusing on drug and HIV prevention among African Americans and other racial/ethnic minorities.
Throughout her career, she has mentored hundreds of early career faculty and advocated for their needs in various settings. In addition, Dr. Belgrave has been honored with many awards, including a Senior Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Psychological Association, and an Outstanding Faculty Award from the State Council of Higher Education, among many others.
Sabrina Norman, MDiv
Director of Operations
As a visionary leader with executive-level management skills and a passion for directing company efforts and operations using a growth-minded orientation, Ms. Butler is often referred to as "The Solutionist." Ms. Butler has over 25 years of operation and administration expertise and specializes in working with organizations that endeavor to provide essential and life enhancing services and resources to groups and communities.
As Director of Operations at Thrive, she utilizes her excellent leadership and teamwork skills to ensure that company objectives are completed with the ultimate goal of providing the best possible value to our clients. Her greatest personal passion is to make a practical and tangible differences in the lives of people everywhere.
Tamara Yakabowski, PhD
Dr. Yakaboski is a professor of Higher Education and Student Affairs Leadership and Department Chair at the University of Northern Colorado. In these roles, she incorporates mindfulness, life coaching, and creativity into coursework, research, advising and mentoring, and academic leadership.
After experiencing burnout from mainstream academic life, Dr. Yakaboski launched a coaching and consulting business to work with individuals who want to create greater freedom and recreate their relationship with higher education.
Links to: Coaching Website
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