JaNiene Peoples is a PhD candidate in Social Work at the Brown School.

Research Interests: 

  • Risk and resilience in Black emerging adults (ages 18-29)
  • College student health
  • Health disparities
  • Mental health
  • Substance use
  • Health behavior change
  • Intervention research




JaNiene is a National Institute on Drug Abuse T32 Predoctoral Fellow. She studies risk and protective factors influencing mental health, substance use, and their co-occurrence among emerging adults and college students through a health equity lens. Her work is driven by building evidence that informs culturally appropriate mental health and substance use interventions, particularly for Black Americans.

JaNiene is currently involved in multiple research projects that focus on mental health, substance use and substance use disorders, race-related stress, intersectionality, and resilience. She primarily conducts research at the Black Families, Racism, and Resilience (BFRR) lab at the Brown School and the Investigators Connecting Health and Social Media (iCHASM) lab at the Washington University School of Medicine. Through a cultural-ecological lens, BFRR investigates Black families’ vulnerability and resilience to marginalization, with a focus on designing and implementing culturally responsive programming that fosters strength and resilience for Black American communities. iCHASM investigates the risk factors and unique needs among people with mental health and substance use disorders and explores ways to leverage technology for outreach and intervention.

JaNiene received a BS in Health and Human Performance from the University of Memphis and MS in Health Education from Texas A&M University. She is also a Certified Health Education Specialist and Certified Personal and Executive Coach. Her years of training have helped her provide culturally informed and strengths-based support to communities in need. Before joining the Brown School, JaNiene spent several years working as a Well-being, Academic, and Substance Use Coach at Vanderbilt University, helping college students develop skills to improve their executive functioning, mental health, and well-being. In this role, JaNiene administered alcohol and other drug assessments to identify students’ risk and readiness for change and served as the primary provider for Vanderbilt University’s Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students program.