First, because I know it confuses people, my name “officially” (for example, in the campus directory) is Charles E. Wright. My father and his father were also named Charles Wright, and so I have always been called Ted from my middle name, Edward.
This is my 19th year at UCI. My primary appointment is in the department of Cognitive Sciences. Before coming to UCI, I was a professor at Columbia University and before that a researcher at Bell Laboratories. (This, in its heyday, was probably the best research facility in the world.) I teach one course in the three-quarter Introduction to psychology sequence that is required for all majors in either Psychology or in Psychology and Social Behavior as well as a seminar on Positive Psychology. I also teach graduate-level courses and, with my colleague Prof. Charlie Chubb, oversee an active lab that conducts research involving human attention, perception, and movement. In both my teaching and in the lab, what I find most rewarding is guiding students who are eager to push themselves and expand their intellectual horizons.
Although clearly work is important to me, much of what makes my life fulfilling involves my family – with my wife of 36 years, I have two absolutely amazing, adult daughters – and other interests. I am passionate about food: cooking and eating it (one of my daughters is a pastry chef), but also thinking about how interesting, healthy food can be produced in sustainable ways and still be affordable. I am an avid photographer. I enjoy hiking and travel; and not just because both are great ways to find new things to photograph. Although I read music poorly, I enjoy singing in a choir. I am a fan of the Angels, the Lakers, the Packers, and, of course, the Anteaters (especially women’s basketball, which one of my daughters played in college). I also enjoy reading and sometimes even find time to do it – there are people who recognize me as the guy who reads while walking to work.
I look forward to getting to know CHP students, alumni, parents, and friends; you’ll see me at Friday coffees and many other events, so please introduce yourselves to me. I am particularly interested in hearing any ideas you may have for continuing, or better yet, improving upon, the CHP tradition of excellence.