Jacob Sawyer


Assistant Professor of Psychology



Educational Background

Ph.D., Counseling Psychology, Columbia University

M.Phil., Counseling Psychology, Columbia University 

B.S., Psychology, Central Michigan University 

I am...

I am a counseling psychologist interested in factors related to mental health and wellbeing. My background and training as a clinician strongly informs my approach to my work as a faculty member.

My career at Alma began in


I'm an expert in

grief and bereavement, college student mental health

Signature course(s):

Abnormal Psychology, Grief and Bereavement

Recent publications:

Selected Publications:

Sawyer, J. S. & Moore, A. N. (2022). Coping methods and college adjustment in a sample of U.S. undergraduate students during the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of American College Health. Advance online publication.

Sawyer, J. S. (2022). How atheists cope with mortality. In T. Taira (Ed.) Atheism in Five Minutes. Equinox Publishing.

Sawyer, J. S., Wilner, L. L., & Ertl, M. M. (2022). Grief and bereavement beliefs among U. S. mental health professionals and the general public. Death Studies, 46(10), 2346-2353.

Brewster, M. E., Velez, B., Sawyer, J. S., Motulsky, W., Chan, A., & Kim, V. (2021). Family religiosity, support, and psychological well-being for sexual minority atheist individuals. Psychology of Religion and Spirituality, 13(3), 266-275.

Ertl, M. M., Sawyer, J. S., Martin, J. L., & Brenner, R. E. (2021). The role of objectification in college women’s substance misuse and sexual risk. Journal of Prevention and Health Promotion, 3(1), 68-96.

Sawyer, J. S., Brewster, M. E., & Ertl, M. M. (2021). Death anxiety and death acceptance in atheists and other nonbelievers. Death Studies, 45(6), 459–468.

Sawyer, J. S. (2020). Bereavement outcomes for atheist individuals: The role of spirituality, discrimination, and meaning. Omega - Journal of Death and Dying. Advance online publication.

A full list of my publication history can be found at my google scholar profile: