Institute for Translational Research Education in Adolescent Drug Abuse (ITRE)
Mentoring & Service Learning Curriculum
A unique feature of the Institute is a team mentoring approach. Community partners, academic mentors and the Institute for Translational Research (ITRE) executive committee members work together to guide scholars in the latest science of alcohol and drug abuse prevention, intervention, and sustainability with an added emphasis on translational research and evidence-based practice (EBP).
Community Partners have been identified based on their relevance to behavioral health, alcohol, and drug abuse, comorbidities research, and treatment among adolescents. Community partners have the opportunity to:
- Include members of their staff as fully participating scholars in the Institute;
- Provide orientation to the scholars that includes information about the role, mission, and structure of the agency and the policy or political process that supports its existence;
- Work with both academic mentors and nationally recognized specialists in EBPs, alcohol and drug abuse, comorbidities, and translational science;
- Develop a service learning project relevant to the agency's research and service needs associated with prevention and treatment; and
- Develop linkages, both locally and nationally, with experts in the field.
Julie Baldwin, Ph.D. is a professor at Northern Arizona University's College of Health and Human Services. Her research has focused on alcohol and drug abuse prevention in youth and young adults, utilizing community-based participatory research approaches, working with underserved and/or marginalized populations (particularly American Indian), and addressing health disparities by developing and implementing culturally competent public health interventions. As an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, she has made a life-long commitment to serving diverse communities and to advocating for health promotion programs for children, adolescents and families.
Donna L. Burton, Ph.D. is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Child and Family Studies, College of Behavioral and Community Sciences at the University of South Florida. Dr. Burton is a faculty member and member of the Institute for Translational Research in Adolescent Behavioral Health's Executive Committee. Dr. Burton's areas of research specialization include implementation science and translational research respective to school mental health and youth and adolescent behavioral health generally. She brings to her current position over 20 years of experience in the delivery of drug abuse and mental health services, including specialty services to address co-occurring disorders for adolescents, adults, and families through integrated community-based behavioral health programming.
Brooke De Heer, Ph.D. is a lecturer in the field of criminology and previously worked as an Intelligence Analyst for the FBI. She received her B.S. from Northern Arizona University and Ph.D in experimental psychology from the University of Texas at El Paso. Her research primarily focuses on sexual violence as a public health issue, with a recent focus on environmental factors associated with campus sexual assault. Her current work considers vulnerable populations experiences of sexual assault and how to address resources available to those populations. She currently teaches courses on violent crime, forensics, and the American court system at NAU.
Amy Green, Ph.D. is a Research Assistant Professor in the Department of Child and Family Studies at the University of South Florida. She received her Ph.D. in public health with a concentration in behavioral health from the USF College of Public Health. She also holds a Master's degree in psychological sciences from James Madison University and a Bachelor's degree in psychology from Stetson University. Dr. Green's research interests include the provision of support services to promote parent engagement in education and mental health services, caregiver strain and mental health services utilization, and effective measurement of parent engagement in school-based mental health services.
Bruce Lubotsky Levin, DrPH is an Associate Professor in both the Department of Child and Family Studies at the University of South Florida, College of Behavioral and Community Sciences and the Department of Community and Family Health at the University of South Florida, College of Public Health. Dr. Levin is the Co-Investigator and Curriculum Director at the Institute for Translational Research in Adolescent Behavioral Health and Program Director for the Masters of Science in Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health. He is Head of the Graduate Studies in Behavioral Health Program. Dr. Levin currently serves as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Behavioral Health Services & Research. He is Senior Editor of Mental Health Services: A Public Health Perspective, 3rd Edition; A Public Health Perspective of Women's Mental Health; and Introduction to Public Health in Pharmacy. He is also Co-Author of Mental Health Informatics.
Tom Massey, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor and Director of the Policy Division in the Department of Child and Family Studies at the University of South Florida, College of Behavioral and Community Sciences. Dr. Massey is a Co-Investigator and Evaluation Director at the Institute for Translational Research in Adolescent Behavioral Health and Concentration Director for the Translational Research and Evaluation specialty track in the Masters of Science in Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health program. He specializes in the organization, implementation, and evaluation of mental health services for adolescents in schools and the community. He has expertise in quantitative and qualitative methodology and has conducted research and evaluation projects on the delivery of mental and behavioral health services in K-12, the sustainability of mental health services, and adolescent engagement in effective services. He is the author of Evaluation Human Research Development Programs: A Practical Guide for Public Agencies and numerous publications and book chapters devoted to evaluation in the applied sector.
Kathleen Moore, Ph.D. is a Research Associate Professor in the Department of Mental Health, Law, and Policy at the University of South Florida, College of Behavioral and Community Sciences. For the past ten years, she has collaborated with community based agencies on numerous projects at the local, state, and national level focused on substance abuse and mental health. Her emphasis has been on project evaluation, bridging the gap between research and practice, and social policy issues such as co-occurring disorders, homelessness, and jail diversion.
Heather J. Williamson, DrPH. is an Assistant Professor for the Department of Occupational Therapy at Northern Arizona University on the Phoenix Biomedical Campus. Clinically, she worked for ten years providing occupational therapy services for children with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). In her role as Associate Executive Director of United Cerebral Palsy of Tampa Bay, she was responsible for overseeing programs providing supports for both children and adults with IDD including early intervention, occupational therapy, physical therapy, speech therapy, supported employment, supported living, and respite services. Her primary research interests include: addressing health and other disparities experienced by individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (IDD); understanding best practices or policies supporting health equity for individuals with IDD and their family caregivers; and utilizing community-based participatory research methods to increase participation of communities, including the IDD community, in research.
Melody Chavez-Robbens, MPH, RDN, LDN - Melody is in her second year as a doctoral student in Community and Family Health, College of Public Health. She received a B.S. in Human Nutrition and Food Science from New Mexico State University. She completed her dietetic internship at the James A. Haley VA Hospital and Clinics and has worked in a variety of clinical settings as a clinical dietitian. Melody then pursued a master's degree in Public Health from the University of South Florida. During that time, she completed the Translational Research in Adolescent Behavioral Health Graduate Certificate. Her research focus for her dissertation is on cancer survivorship and medication management with specific emphasis on opioids.
Lauren Julian, MS - Lauren Julian is a form Institute Scholar (cohort 4). She earned her Master of Science in Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health, with a concentration in Translation Research and Evaluation in May, 2018. Her research interests include child and adolescent substance use, prevention of teen dating violence and bullying, and the treatment of co-occurring disorders.
Alexis McKinley, BA -
Gina-Maria Roca, MS - Gina-Maria Roca is graduate student in the Department of Community and Family Health and was a scholar in the third cohort of the Institute for Translational Research in Adolescent Behavioral Health at the University of South Florida. She received her B.A. in Psychology from The University of Tampa in Tampa, FL. Prior to beginning graduate school, Gina-Maria held inpatient and outpatient clinical and administrative roles at Gracepoint, formerly Mental Health Care Inc. As an Institute scholar, Gina-Maria partnered with Hillsborough County Children's Services to evaluate readiness and barriers to organizational change, as well as sustainability of three evidence-based interventions. Gina-Maria is currently researching how the sexual objectification of women and social media use influence women's behavioral health in partial fulfillment of the Master of Science in Public Health concentration in Behavioral Health degree. For more information on the research project she completed as a Cohort 3 Institute Scholar, please click here:
Enya Vroom, M.S. - Enya Vroom is a former Institute Scholar and graduate of the Master of Science in Child and Adolescent Behavioral Health program. Currently, she is pursuing a Ph.D. in Behavioral and Community Sciences. Her research interests are rooted in the translation and implementation of evidence-based practices focused on substance use prevention and social and emotional learning among child and adolescent populations.
Academic mentors have been identified based on their expertise in adolescent behavioral health, alcohol and drug use, co-occurring substance abuse and mental disorders, and translational research. Academic mentors:
- Work with scholars and community partners to develop a service learning research project of high academic caliber that is consistent with the goals of the community agency and the Institute;
- Advise scholars in the IRB process and research methods; and
- Provide regular advising to scholars in collaboration with agency mentors/supervisors.