Dr. Opara’s research is focused on providing strengths-based approaches to understanding disparities among urban minority youth.

For more information about Dr. Opara's research, please visit www.oparalab.org

RESEARCH

Primarily, Dr. Opara is dedicated to changing the narrative of Black families and incorporating their cultural strengths in prevention programming.  Her research exemplifies this approach as she conducts studies on three main areas:  

Youth substance abuse, HIV/AIDS and STI prevention, and Health disparities among girls and women of color 

If you are interested in collaborating with Dr. Opara on research projects, contact her by clicking below.

Download Dr. Opara’s CV for citations of her peer-reviewed published manuscripts and conference presentations. 

YOUTH SUBSTANCE ABUSE PREVENTION RESEARCH

Dr. Opara’s research on substance abuse has been centered on the experiences of minority youth in urban, under-resourced communities. Using the voices and experiences of urban youth to identify key issues plaguing their community and then highlight the various supportive structures both within the home (e.g., parent and sibling support) and immediate community environment (e.g. school, organizations) that can work towards reducing substance use. 

 

HIV/AIDS AND STI PREVENTION IN ADOLESCENTS OF COLOR
Dr. Opara’s research has focused on understanding factors that contribute to HIV and STI (sexually transmitted infections) among adolescents of color. Dr. Opara is especially interested in how her research informs the way researchers, clinicians, and interventionists develop HIV/AIDS prevention programming that is specific to race and gender and incorporates the importance of family and communities role in prevention.

HEALTH DISPARITIES AMONG GIRLS AND WOMEN

Dr. Opara’s work uses a cultural, racial, and gender-specific lens in order to understand the unique intersections that may place girls and women of color at risk of poorer health outcomes. In her approach, she works directly with girls and women to understand how their unique position in society has could effect their health. Dr. Opara seeks to create awareness of prevention programs that need to be in place for girls and women of color that highlight culturally relevant and gender specific factors such as ethnic identity and address gendered racism.

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Ijeoma Opara is a dedicated HIV/AIDS and drug abuse prevention researcher. She is an advocate, mentor, and is dedicated to improving the lives and well-being of Black and Brown youth.

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