Shannon Crowley, Ph.D.
Employment Type FACULTY
Location Rocky Mount Campus
Program/Department Exercise Science, Health Promotion, Leadership Cabinet, Masters of Public Health, Nursing Program, School of Math and Science

Shannon Crowley, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Public Health, MPH Program Director, Program Coordinator for Health Promotion

The University of South Carolina
Columbia, SC


Shannon Crowley, Ph.D. obtained her doctorate in Exercise Science from the Arnold School of Public Health at the University of South Carolina, and concurrently obtained a certificate of graduate study in Psychiatric Rehabilitation from the University of South Carolina School of Medicine. Following her doctoral program, Dr. Crowley completed a NRSA Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, sponsored by the National Institute of Mental Health, in the Program in Women’s Mood Disorders at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine, where she won the prestigious Postdoctoral Scholar Award for Research Excellence. Dr. Crowley’s research interests focus on psychobiological aspects of exercise and physical activity, and in particular, stress-related mechanisms by which exercise may help to prevent and treat depression and anxiety disorders. In this capacity, she has conducted research in various populations at risk for depression and anxiety disorders, including soldiers undergoing basic combat training in the United States Army, veterans and active duty military personnel returning from Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom with diagnosed Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, and women in pregnancy and postpartum at risk for postpartum depression.

Dr. Crowley is currently an Associate Professor of Public Health at North Carolina Wesleyan University in Rocky Mount, NC, and also serves as the Masters of Public Health Program Director and Program Coordinator for the Department of Health Promotion. She is highly active in teaching and student-driven research at NCWU, focusing on health aspects of physical activity and exercise in both her teaching and research arenas.


Selected Scholarly Work

  • Crowley, SK. “Exercise, Depression-Anxiety Disorders and Sex Hormones” in Sex Hormones, Exercise and Women: Scientific and Clinical Aspects, 2nd Edition. (Anthony C. Hackney, PhD, Ed.) Springer Science and Business Media, LLC. New York, NY , 2023. 
  • M. Magal, R. A. Valladarez Cuestas, S. K. Crowley, V. B. Batchelor & J. R. Hoffman. (In Press, 2023). Seasonal Changes in Physical Performance–Related Variables in Women NCAA Division III Soccer Players. Gazzetta Medica Italiana-Archivio per le Scienze Mediche. 
  • Youngstedt SD, Ginsberg JP, Kline CE, Crowley SK, Reynolds AM, Burch JB, Han SY. Bright light treatment of combat-related PTSD: A randomized controlled trial. Military Medicine. 2021. Epub ahead of print.
  • Crowley SK, Rebellon J, Huber C, Leonard AJ, Henderson D, Magal M. Cardiorespiratory fitness, sleep, and physiological responses to stress in women. Eur J Sport Sci. 2020 Jan 25:1-10. doi: 10.1080/17461391.2020.1716855.
  • Crowley SK, O’Buckley TK, Schiller CE, Stuebe A, Morrow AL, and Girdler SS. Blunted neuroactive steroid and HPA axis responses to stress are associated with reduced sleep quality and negative affect in pregnancy: a pilot study. Psychopharmacology. 2016; 233(7):1299-310. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26856852
  • Crowley SK, Pedersen CA, Leserman J, Girdler SS. The Influence of Early Life Sexual Abuse on Oxytocin Concentrations and Premenstrual Symptomatology in Women with a Menstrually Related Mood Disorder. Biological Psychology. 2015; 109: 1-9. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25892085
  • Brandon AR, Crowley SK, Gordon JL, Girdler SS. Non-Pharmacologic Treatments for Depression Related to Reproductive Events. Current Psychiatry Reports. 2014; 16 (12): 526.  ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25308394
  • Crowley SK, Wilkinson LL, Wigfall LT, Wooten NR, Reynolds AM, Muraca ST, Glover SH, Wooten NR, Sui X , Beets MW, Durstine JL, Newman-Norlund RD, Youngstedt SD. Physical Fitness and Depressive Symptoms during Army Basic Combat Training. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. 2015; 47(1):151-8. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24870581
  • Crowley SK, Girdler SS. Neurosteroid, GABAergic and Hypothalamic Pituitary Adrenal (HPA) Axis Regulation: What is the Current State of Knowledge in Humans? Psychopharmacology.  2014; 231:3619-34. Invited Review. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24756763
  • Goodrich KM, Crowley SK, Lee DC, Sui XS, Hooker SP, Blair SN. Associations of cardiorespiratory fitness and parental history of diabetes with risk of type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice, 2012; 95(3):425-31. ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22119534


Professional Affiliations


Google Scholar


School of Mathematics and Sciences
North Carolina Wesleyan University
3400 North Wesleyan Blvd.
Rocky Mount, NC 27804


Office Location:
Shaw Learning Center

See a full list of publications, research projects, presentations and honors.


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