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Dr. Kristin Stewart: Looking at the Science behind Consumer Behavior

By David Ogul

Cal State San Marcos Business Professor Kristin Stewart never dreamed about a career in academia while growing up in the Georgia town of Lilburn just outside Atlanta. A star soccer player who would help lead Auburn University to the SEC Championship as a freshman, Stewart was more interested in making the U.S. Olympics team…but then she blew out her knee.

Though Stewart would return to SEC all-conference and all-region status after an arduous recovery, the experience changed her career outlook and led her on a journey that included a Ph.D. in advertising and public relations and joining the CSUSM faculty in August of 2015 as an assistant professor of marketing.

She couldn’t be happier.

“CSUSM is young compared to other California colleges and universities, but many of its ideals and goals are hefty, unique, invigorating and imaginative,” said Stewart. “That makes this a unique place, and a fun place to be for a person like me with big goals and a grand imagination.”

Stewart’s expertise is in advertising, marketing communication and consumer psychology. She has presented her work at several conferences and among her current projects is a study looking at how the tempo of a tune can affect consumer behavior.

Stewart’s biggest influence in her career? Her family.

“My mother home schooled me until the 9th grade and instilled in me a love of learning. My dad and younger sister have both started successful businesses, my older sister is a Mohs dermatologist and my twin sister who is a neuropsychologist—I have always had amazing role models to look up too.”