Centers & Institutes

Center for Brownfields Research and Redevelopment

“Brownfields” are defined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as properties—“the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.” The EPA estimates that there are nearly half a million brownfields in the U.S. Most of these sites are located in poor and underserved communities with limited access to fresh foods, outdoor recreation, and healthcare. Established in 1998, the mission of the center is to leverage interdisciplinary scientific expertise at the University of South Florida to inform outcome-driven research on environmental toxicants, land use legacies, community health, environmental justice, and sustainable and equitable development. Learn more about the center and their impact on poor and underserved communities on their website.

Center for Migrant Education

The mission of the Center for Migrant Education is to join with local, state, and national agencies and organizations to improve education and related services for migrant children and their families through the development and study of programs and training addressed at special needs. Learn more on their website

The Family Study Center at the USF St. Petersburg Campus

Directed by Dr. James McHale, the Family Study Center is the home of both basic and applied research studies concerned with understanding, supporting, and advocating for families with young children. Learn more on their website.

Florida Health Equity Research Institute (HERI) 

In 2013, the Florida Health Equity Research Institute (HERI) was established with the overall purpose to implement the Health Disparities Research Agenda for Florida through proactive collaborations among academic institutions, health care providers, government organizations, community-based organizations and funding organizations. HERI was established by State of Florida legislative appropriation to address the need for large multi-university, multi-disciplinary efforts to improve health disparities. Through this effort, HERI will facilitate the design of broad-based studies to address health disparities in medically underserved populations and to evaluate the outcomes consistent with the following goals:

  • Increase the development of health innovations that improve the health of medically underserved populations.
  • Increase the translation, adaptation and implementation of evidenced-based health innovations in underserved populations.
  • Increase the pool of individuals from underrepresented groups for the health professions and biomedical research.
  • Increase external funding that improves economic development in the state.
  • Increased recognition of Florida as a leader in improved health outcomes for medically underserved populations.

For more information, visit the HERI website.

Heritage Lab

The Department of Anthropology Heritage Research and Resource Management lab was launched in August 2006 under the direction of USF Department of Anthropology Associate Professor, Dr. Antoinette Jackson. The lab is located on the USF Tampa campus in SOC 6. Visit the Heritage Lab website.

Humanities Institute

Institute on Black Life

The Institute of Black Life was established over 30 years ago at the University of South Florida by Dr. Juel Shannon Smith and with the goal of intentionally cultivating research and teaching so that it could positively impact Black communities. In 2020, the Institute of Black Life, under the leadership of Dr. Fenda Akiwumi, has pivoted towards a broader goal of seeking the university's support to become a premiere institute by working towards these three principal goals:

  1. To facilitate and support knowledge production through research and scholarly exchange on a broad range of topics relevant to the lives of Black people in the U.S., Africa, and the African Diaspora with a particular focus on Blackness, Anti-Black racism and the systemic impact of white supremacy.
  2. To facilitate local and global engagement, interdisciplinary research and service projects that address issues facing Black communities.
  3. To support USF student retention, academic success and creativity through cultural heritage enrichment, informal training, outreach and mentorship programs, study abroad and community-engaged research and service opportunities that support the IBL mission.

In 2020, Dr. Akiwumi established a new IBL faculty advisory committee to further contribute to the planning of these efforts. For more information about IBL, please visit their website or email Dr. Fenda Akiwumi.

Institute for the Study of Latin America and the Caribbean