10 Assistant Professors Receive Mental Health Research Grants in Texas

June 19, 2013

AUSTIN, Texas — Ten tenure-track assistant professors in Texas have been awarded $192,130 in grants by the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health to conduct innovative research in mental health.

The two-year grants are capped at $19,250 each. The 10 research projects were selected from a pool of 38 proposals from 17 schools across Texas.

The goals of this initiative are to increase the pool of junior faculty members doing quality mental health research and to encourage the disbursement of research findings to other researchers, policymakers and service providers through presentations at state and national conferences and meetings.

“The foundation is committed to funding promising research that sheds light on various dimensions of mental health,” said Dr. Octavio N. Martinez, Jr., executive director of the Hogg Foundation.

The recipients of the 2013 Mental Health Research Grants are:

  • Southern Methodist University: Chrystyna Kouros, Department of Psychology, in collaboration with Naomi Ekas, Texas Christian University Department of Psychology, will examine ethnic differences in the identification of and attributions about children’s depression symptoms.
  • Texas State University: Christine Lynn Norton, School of Social Work, will study the use of adventure therapy, a unique and innovative approach to treatment, on children and families affected by abuse and neglect.
  • Texas Tech University Health Science Center El Paso: Dr. Rebecca M. Pasillas, Department of Psychiatry, will examine a psychotherapeutic intervention known as Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Social Skills Training and assess its efficacy with Latinos with serious mental illness.
  • University of Houston: Sarah C. Narendorf, Graduate College of Social Work, will gather data on help-seeking patterns from a set of young adults who have accessed psychiatric emergency services in Harris County.
  • University of North Texas: Camilo J. Ruggero, Department of Psychology, will examine the use of screening instruments for bipolar disorder for utilization with Spanish-speaking individuals.
  • UNT Health Science Center: Dr. Brandy Roane, Department of Internal Medicine, will study the relationship between depression and sleep disorders among Mexican American adults and elders.
  • The University of Texas at Austin: Susan De Luca, School of Social Work, will conduct a study of adolescents receiving treatment, in response to suicide attempts, at a  psychiatric hospital in Central Texas. Andreana Haley, Department of Psychology, will investigate whether stress, depression and anxiety may worsen cognitive vulnerability for people who are carriers of the herpes simplex 1 virus. Delida Sanchez, Department of Educational Psychology, will study the relationship between depression and sexual risk behaviors among Latina adolescents.
  • The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston: Dr. Paul J. Rowan, School of Public Health, will study the association of maternal depression with pre-term delivery and poor immunization compliance.

The Hogg Foundation advances recovery and wellness in Texas by supporting mental health services, policy analysis, research and public education. The foundation was created in 1940 by the children of former Texas Gov. James S. Hogg and is part of the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement at The University of Texas at Austin.

For more information, contact: Carrie Dyer.