Dr. Emma Sterrett-Hong

Associate Professor, CFT Program Director

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Dr. Sterrett's broad research interest is the potential of relationships with adults and mentors in natural contexts (families, schools, communities) to reduce health disparities affecting ethnic minority, sexual minority, and low-income youth. Related to this interest, over the past six years I have been developing a two-line program of research on:  (1) positive non-parental adults and mentors and their role in reducing youth health disparities and (2) additional ecological influences that can narrow youth health disparities.

Previously, I conducted investigations of the role of non-parental adults in the lives of African American and Latino youth. Currently, I am the Co-Principal Investigator of a study to examine the effects of three different models of developmental mentoring, in which high school students act as mentors to middle school students, on school attendance and behavior among a sample of ethnically diverse, at-risk youth in the 6th grade.  I am also collaborating on a study to develop an intervention to decrease childhood obesity among low-income African American children.

Finally, in the future, I plan to examine the role of non-parental adults in promoting health behaviors among young Black men who have sex with men (YBMSM), who exhibit the highest HIV incidence rate of all demographic groups.   I am a board member of the West Louisville Community Ministries, which provides financial assistance and training to low-income families, and also, in general, have an interest in participating in mentoring programs for under-served youth.  My teaching interests are clinical supervision, evidence-based practice, and psychopathology.