Dr. Christopher P. Salas-Wright, assistant professor at the School of Social Work, in collaboration with Dr. Lori Holleran Steiker, was awarded a $19,250 grant from the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health.

Salas-Wright will pilot test a student veteran-adapted version of the “Keepin’ it REAL” intervention, which focuses on the development of decision-making and substance use resistance skills. The study is significant because it focuses on student veterans, a population at elevated risk for co-morbid substance use and mental health disorders.

“The long-term goal is to develop a preventative intervention designed to target substance use among student veterans experiencing psychological distress,” said Salas-Wright. “This study is innovative because it integrates an emphasis on overall mental health into a substance-focused intervention for a population that has very specific challenges.”

The goals of the Hogg grants are to increase the pool of junior faculty doing quality mental health research and to encourage the disbursement of research findings through presentations at state and national conferences and meetings.