Bjarne Holmes, Ph.D.
Dr. Bjarne Holmes has taught and led research teams in three different countries and educational systems over the last 15 years. His research is student-driven and he's come to the conclusion that such an approach is primarily about providing an opportunity for students to learn to think and to learn to follow their curiosity in life. He believes that the students who do best in the psychology are those who have personal life experiences that they bring with them - experiences that they now are ready to better understand and which have helped form a passion for bettering themselves, their communities, and the world they live in.
Before joining Champlain College, Dr. Holmes directed the Family and Personal Relationships Laboratory at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland. Prior to that he was an Instructor and Researcher at Harvard Medical School in their Psychiatry Department and also taught at UMass Amherst, Smith College, and in Sweden. Dr. Holmes' past scholarship has focused mainly on romantic relationships, attachment, and parenting - in which he has over twenty peer-reviewed papers or book chapters and also served as Associate Editor for the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. When coming to Champlain College, it became obvious to Dr. Holmes' that the spirit for relational and sexual positivity amongst the students at Champlain made it a ripe environment to build The LOVES Initiative as a student-driven research and advocacy team. The student researchers chose the name and the primary focus.
You can read more about Dr. Holmes' past academic work here. He writes a blog for Psychology Today called "Love by the Numbers". He also founded and produces the successful podcast series Relationship Matters, recorded at Champlain College.
In his free time Dr. Holmes is an avid rock climber and mountaineer, having taken part in expeditions to such places as Peru, Greenland, and Nepal. He was part of the first American expedition to the Borkoldoy region of Kyrgyzstan in 2005 with first accents and the naming of nine high altitude mountains, including Mount John Bowlby and Peak Mary Ainsworth (named after the famous attachment theory icons). He's an avid international traveler and photographer with a keen interest in how relationships function in varying cultures and social contexts, having lived with nomadic tribes in Uttar Pradesh in India, visited matrilineal societies in western China, and stayed with the Aharacu peoples of northern Colombia as examples. For a collection of his best photography, press here. In the snowy winters of Vermont you'll find him backcountry skiing with his two wolf-type dogs, Loki and Freja.
Dr. Holmes while visiting The Gambia in western Africa in 2014. The Division of Education and Human Studies at Champlain College is working to establish an International Service Internship in collaboration with The University of The Gambia and Dr. Holmes is spear-heading the exchange. Pictured, he's seen posing as he put it, "with two of the most angel-like creatures to have walked the face of the Earth."
Dr. Holmes on an expedition with his wife and fellow mountaineer Kelly Faughnan. The pair has happily played together for soon 17 years.
Loki and Freja - the notorious wolf dogs!