Jeremy Goldbach, Ph.D., LMSW
Ph.D. in Social Work, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX
M.S.S.W, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX
B.A. in Clinical and Social Psychology, The University of Rochester, Rochester, NY
My research program in focused on developing evidence-based interventions to reduce multi-risk behavior (substance use, HIV risk) in Hispanic adolescents and their families. Over the last few years, I have engaged in research to advance knowledge of the relationship between cultural stress experiences and these negative behavioral health outcomes. Currently I have two sources of funding, from the USC Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI) and through the NIH Loan Repayment Program (LRP) focused on pilot testing an intervention originally developed through NIMHD Phase I funding (1R43MD006150-01) at one study site through a randomized control trial design. The findings of this study are informing the development of an RCT study to be submitted through an NIMHD R01 application. In addition, I am engaged in complementary research with senior mentors to conduct a secondary analysis of mixed-methods data collected from a nationally representative sample of Hispanic adolescents in an NIMH-funded series of studies (1R43MH073180-01; 1R44MH073180-02).
My applied research investigates the development of culturally grounded substance abuse and HIV prevention interventions for Latino youth. Although Latino’s are at increased risk for these behavioral health outcomes, there are very few evidence-based interventions designed for the population. I first developed an interest in research while at the University of Rochester. During my undergraduate degree program, I learned important research skills from conducting clinical interviews to entering and analyzing survey data. After completing my degree, I began my first clinical job as an adolescent addiction therapist, finding that many evidence-based interventions we employed were not effective for the diverse populations we served, and that more culturally relevant interventions were needed. Informed by my practice experiences, I began a Masters in Social Work program in 2007 at the University of Texas at Austin, immediately seeking out opportunities to further refine my research agenda. Under the mentorship of Dr. Lori Holleran Steiker, and her NIDA funded K01 award, I conducted research on the feasibility of adapting prevention curriculum in unique high-risk community settings. During my first year as a doctoral student, I became interested in HIV prevention, and its relationship to drug use. In an effort to understand how well HIV prevention practitioners follow interventions with fidelity, specifically when working with diverse minority groups, I designed a pilot study from which I was awarded the George H. Mitchell Excellence in Graduate Research Award, conferred to only three graduate students annually at The University of Texas. Most recently, I gained expertise in the development and testing of new interventions for Latinos. I completed work as the project director on a NIMHD R43 (1R43MD006150-01; PI: Cervantes), a grant that I oversaw with my mentor Dr. Richard Cervantes, a leader in the field of Hispanic behavioral health. Drawing on my background in cultural adaptation, this work integrated an HIV education component into an effective, research-based substance abuse prevention curriculum for Latino youth. The original curriculum, Familia Adelante (FA), was developed by Dr. Cervantes, and is efficacious in reducing drug use in Latino youth (Cervantes 1993; 2001; 2005). However, unlike other curricula, the FA focuses on reducing minority related stressors for Latinos (e.g., coping with discrimination, family separation and deportation stress), rather than on drug use specifically. Likely due to its focus on these social determinants of behavior, the curriculum was effective in reducing drug and alcohol use patterns among both youth and parent participants (Cervantes & Goldbach, 2012). The revised curriculum that I helped develop, Familia Adelante – Revised (FA-R), now includes HIV prevention content, and is ready to be tested in a randomized control trial (RCT). This project represents the culmination of my past experiences, as it builds on my expertise in HIV and substance abuse prevention and infuses my work with cultural adaptation and curriculum development for Latinos.