This post-doctoral training program, titled "Adolescent Research in Community" (ARC), aims to train a new generation of adolescent health researchers (both health professionals and trainees with doctorates) to conduct interdisciplinary, translational, community-partnered research addressing adolescent health priorities outlined in Healthy People 2020, especially disparities in health and health care. Second to infancy, adolescence is the most dynamic developmental period across the life course, involving a complex interplay of biological, relational, and social development in the transition from childhood to adulthood. Thus, increasing the number of researchers committed to understanding adolescent development in a social-ecological context, improving the health and social trajectories of adolescents, and translating research for policy and practice could have profound impact on the nation's overall health. Fellows will receive training in novel research methods in community-based settings, ethics of conducting research with vulnerable youth populations, participatory stakeholder engagement, and translating research for advocacy and policy. The ARC program will identify highly qualified applicants (three per year), with an emphasis on minority trainees, and provide them with a tailored didactic training program and mentored research experience focused on developing skills in translational, community-partnered research relevant to understanding adolescent development in social-ecological context and improving adolescent health. The University of Pittsburgh has many strengths to ensure success of this program. First, the ARC program draws on faculty with existing adolescent research collaborations among departments of Pediatrics, Psychiatry, Family Medicine, Obstetrics- Gynecology, Internal Medicine, School of Public Health, School of Nursing, School of Social Work as well as RAND. Second, the many federally-funded studies led by faculty provide a wealth of cross-cutting postdoctoral mentored research experiences in adolescent mental health, obesity, sexual and reproductive health, violence prevention, and substance use. Third, didactic opportunities provide training in innovative methods and a foundation in theories of social determinants of health, health behavior change, and developmental behavioral science. Fourth, we leverage an outstanding infrastructure for recruiting and retaining minority and disadvantaged students. Fifth, our faculty's experience in leading NIH-funded training programs will inform the ARC program. Finally, the ARC program has the institutional support, highly collaborative research environment, and committed community partners needed to train the next generation of adolescent health researchers to better understand pathways by which social contextual factors may hinder or promote adolescent health and to develop targeted interventions using theory- and evidence-driven approaches. At the University of Pittsburgh, this combination of outstanding potential fellows, unique training, and committed research mentors will maximize the likelihood of producing future leaders in adolescent health.

PI Name
Elizabeth Miller MD, PhD


Division:Adolescent Medicine
Date Award Begins:5/1/2016   

Date Award Ends: 4/30/2021
Funding Mechanism:T32
Source of Funding:NICHD - Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
Types of Trainees:Postdoctoral