Lead Investigator: Bonnie Duran, Dr.PH
Academic achievement is important for American Indian/Alaskan Native (AIAN) individuals for professional and personal reasons. An AIAN individual without a college degree is ten times more likely to develop alcohol dependence than an AIAN with a college degree. Research also suggests that alcohol abuse among young AIAN individuals reduces the likelihood of pursuing and completing higher education goals.
This Epidemiology study aims to collect data at tribal colleges and universities to assist in developing AIAN specific interventions and policies that address alcohol and drug use on TCU campuses.
Community-based participatory research (CBPR) projects to enhance academic achievement by eliminating drug and alcohol abuse related problems and health disparities for AIAN individuals attending TCUs.
- Survey a national representative sample of 1200 students at up to 32 TCU and apply a Native-specific, strength- and resiliency-based model to examine how AIAN-specific risk and protective health behaviors influence substance abuse and mental health outcomes.
- Examine risk and resiliency factors for historical trauma and other violence exposure and meanings of stressors in local TCU context.
- Disseminate study findings broadly and work to eliminate health disparities by translating the findings into policy and practice guidelines for TCU leaders, allies and funders.
This is a major step toward developing culturally appropriate and sustainable interventions at TCU that address substance abuse.
The Center for Indigenous Health Research will work in collaboration with the American Indian Higher Education Consortium (AIHEC), up to 32 partnering TCU, a Scientific and Community Advisory Committee, and three research groups from the University of Washington (UW).
A CBPR approach and principles of mutual respect and equity will be followed.
Benefits to TCUs
- Return of all data collected on substance abuse, mental health, risk behaviors and protective factors in TCU communities in complete, aggregated data sets to each TCU for use in policy, grant writing and future development projects.
- Provision of data about resiliency and health promotion factors in TCU culture at the individual, group and community levels.
- Increase of bidirectional re-search capacity between TCU and UW.
- Informing and improving health services referrals.