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Gibbons, Hardin Awarded NIH Grant to Study Postsecondary Education in Rural Appalachia

Melinda Gibbons, an associate professor in the Department of Educational Psychology and Counseling, and Erin Hardin, an associate professor in the Department of Psychology, have just received a new R25 grant from NIH’s Office of Research Infrastructure Programs (ORIP), “PIPES: Possibilities in Postsecondary Education and Science among Rural Appalachian Youth.”

Appalachian society represents a complex invisible minority personified by low educational achievement, rural isolation, and high poverty rates that contribute to elevated incidences of disease and reduced health care standards. By researching and applying strategic intervention strategies designed to reduce perceived educational barriers and encourage engagement in higher-level learning with a science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and medical science (STEMM) focus, Drs. Gibbons and Hardin aim to develop an empirical base of evidence for effectively increasing Appalachian high school youth interest in the biomedical, behavioral, and clinical research sciences. Accomplishing these goals will assist in remedying health care disparities in rural Appalachia and promoting value-added workforce development.