Director of Research Development
Sarah Chavez is a PhD Candidate in the Interdisciplinary Research on Substance Use Joint Doctoral Program at UCSD and SDSU. Sarah earned a B.A. in Psychology from University of Redlands and a M.A. in Clinical Psychology from California State University, Northridge. While completing her Master’s, Sarah received both the California Pre-doctoral and Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Program (CDIP) scholarship while serving as a research assistant in the P.U.E.N.T.E. lab. As a P.U.E.N.T.E. Lab member, she explored the racial/ethnic disparities in child mental health service receipt and evaluated culturally-sensitive psychotherapeutic strategies for promoting family engagement within child mental health care.
As a doctoral student, Sarah is part of multiple research projects. In one study, Sarah will be exploring how environmental factors influence alcohol use among young adults in real-time using Cellphone enabled Ecological Momentary Assessment tools. In a separate study, Sarah is learning more about driving under the influence of cannabis from DUI participants. Sarah has taken her interests in substance use and integrated Univariate and Multivariate statistics to examine youth risk factors in engaging in early substance use. Combining her passion of statistics and research on at-risk youths, Sarah has also provided program recommendations to the Youthful Offender Rehabilitation Program that were rooted in statistical data.
Overall, Sarah is interested in: substance abuse theory; addiction; youth risk and protective factors; racial/ethnic substance use differences; and evaluating prevention, interventions and treatment options. She strives to continue to use her research background to address the issues of youth substance use and evaluate possible treatment and prevention methods for addiction. Currently, she is working on her dissertation project titled: A parallel Mixed-Methods Study Examining Moderators and Mediators of Adverse Childhood Experiences on Alcohol Use among Latinx Young Adults.
Between her master’s and doctoral program, Sarah was part of 14 different conferences where 10 of them were first-authored by her. She has trained undergraduate students, worked on projects that required both her qualitative and quantitative skills, taught courses such as Intro to Psychology and Alcohol and Other Drug Problems: Preventions, while managing her doctoral courses. Sarah is excited to now serve as the Research Strategist for Latina Voice where she gets to have the opportunity to use her quantitative and qualitative research skills to serve Latina scholars all over the United States.