glass of vodka with a heart motif applique
Love and alcohol: Romantic relationships can influence genetic predispositions for alcohol problems
How do the people we love shape our drinking? Researchers know that genetic and environmental factors influence alcohol outcomes such as abuse or dependence. However, romantic relationships can alter the impact of those genetic influences.
Albert Ksinan
Study finds ‘robust evidence’ of persistent racial and ethnic disparities in discipline in secondary schools across the United States
Albert Ksinan found that African American students and students self-identifying as two or more races were at greater risk for discipline actions across all disciplinary measures in both middle and high schools.
U.S. Supreme Court
Supreme Court’s redistricting decision may be ‘most important development in Virginia politics in a generation’
VCU Professor Alex Keena, Ph.D., said the Supreme Court’s decision in Virginia House of Delegates v. Bethune-Hill delivers a major structural advantage to Democrats in the General Assembly elections.
Amy Rector, Ph.D., and Omar Abdullah show off hominin teeth fossils that they found in the Afar region of Ethiopia.
Anthropology professor receives NSF grant to study humans’ early ancestors
Amy Rector, Ph.D., is part of a team conducting research in Ethiopia where the oldest Homo fossil and earliest stone tools have been found.
Jason Reed
A simple, fast and less-costly approach to diagnosing blood cancers?
Physics Professor Jason Reed and Massey Cancer Center researchers are studying the viability of ‘DNA barcoding’ under a grant from the Commonwealth Health Research Board.
sheet music
Who was Mr. Baptiste? A VCU professor’s investigation may have just proven the identity of the world’s first black published composer.
The author of this sheet music in “A Voyage to the Islands Madera, Barbados, Nieves, S. Christophers and Jamaica” is known only as "Mr. Baptiste." VCU professor Mary Caton Lingold, Ph.D., has uncovered documents that suggest Baptiste was a black musician and composer.
book cover: A little child shall lead them (three students looking at a sign in front of a school that says,
‘A Little Child Shall Lead Them’: Inside Prince Edward County’s battle for school desegregation
A new book co-edited by a Virginia Commonwealth University history professor offers a different perspective on the battle for — and against — educational opportunity in Prince Edward County, Virginia.
A teenager with an anxious look on her face in the dark
Facing fears: How exposure therapy can help children with anxiety
Michael A. Southam-Gerow, chair of VCU’s Department of Psychology, discusses his new book, “Exposure Therapy with Children and Adolescents.”
VCU alumna Ashley McCuistion pilots a drone to take photographs of the Robert E. Lee monument that will be used to create a 3D model. (Photo by Brian McNeill, University Public Affairs)
A VCU lab and Virginia nonprofit are using drones to create 3D models of Monument Avenue’s monuments
A drone piloted by Ashley McCuistion is circling the Robert E. Lee monument on Richmond’s Monument Avenue, taking detailed photographs that will allow her to create a 3D digital model of the controversial monument.
books on library shelves
Eminent Scholars announced for 2019-20
The College of Humanities and Sciences Eminent Scholars program serves to recognize mid-career faculty scholars and reward them for their scholarly contributions to their discipline, the College and the university.
Tressie Cottom
Cottom to receive prestigious early career award from American Sociological Association
Tressie McMillan Cottom, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the Department of Sociology in the College of Humanities and Sciences, has been named the recipient of the Doris Entwisle Early Career Award of the American Sociological Association section on Sociology of Education.
Paul Perrin
Psychology professor edits special journal issue on disability and social justice in rehabilitation research
A special issue of the journal Rehabilitation Psychology edited by a Virginia Commonwealth University psychology professor explores disability and social justice in rehabilitation research.
Brooke Newman
Newman’s book wins gold medal 2019 Independent Publisher Book Award
“A Dark Inheritance: Blood, Race, and Sex in Colonial Jamaica,” (Yale University Press) by Brooke N. Newman, Ph.D., an associate professor in the Department of History in the College of Humanities and Sciences, has won a 2019 Independent Publisher Book Award.
Cristina Stanciu
English professor receives Fulbright award to teach, conduct research in Romania
Cristina Stanciu, Ph.D., an English professor at Virginia Commonwealth University, has received a prestigious Fulbright U.S. Scholar award to teach in Romania for one year and to conduct research for a new book manuscript, “Archives of Memory and Survival: Indigenous Representation in Residential School Literature and Film.”
Katharine Moore Tibbetts, Ph.D., an assistant professor in the Department of Chemistry, operates laser beams in her lab that serve as a “camera” that captures the motions of individual energetic molecules on the femtosecond timescale.
Professor receives U.S. government’s highest honor bestowed to early career scientists and engineers
A chemistry professor is a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government to outstanding scientists and engineers who are beginning their independent research careers and who show exceptional promise for leadership in science and technology.
Peter Barr
Romantic partnerships mitigate influence of genetic predisposition to alcohol consumption
Yet relationships’ “protective effect” against high-risk drinking is limited to men, according to a new study in Addiction led by a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Psychology.
a doctor and psychologist meet together with a patient
$1.35M grant expands pro bono behavioral health care to Richmond-area underserved populations
The Primary Care Psychology Training Collaborative embeds clinical psychology doctoral trainees from VCU in health safety net clinics in Richmond.
Heather Lucas and students from her research lab
NIH awards $1.65M to VCU professor to study the role of brain metals in Parkinson’s disease
Chemistry professor Heather R. Lucas’ research may uncover novel disease pathways and could inspire new targets for drug development.
aerial view of maldives
‘This is a very big problem’: Rising sea levels will lead to significant displacement in coming decades
The Maldives, a small country in the Arabian Sea, is at high risk of being made uninhabitable by rising sea levels.
Tal Simmons delivering a lecture in a classroom
Forensic science lecture series explores emerging research and high-profile cases
Tal Simmons, Ph.D., a VCU forensic science professor, delivered the first talk of the lecture series. She spoke on “Forensic Anthropology in the Service of Human Rights.”
Michelle Peace and her lab team
CNN's Sanjay Gupta visits VCU to interview forensic science professor
Michelle Peace, Ph.D., appeared on CNN's Weed 5 to discuss her research on e-cigarettes and CBD oils and liquids.
a shelf full of liquor bottles at a bar
Genetically at-risk youth can lower risk of alcohol problems by taking part in prevention program
A VCU-led study has found that participating in a family based prevention program during adolescence reduces the likelihood that people with a genetic predisposition to alcohol problems develop those problems as an adult.
Joshua Ekhardt alongside the book cover for
English professor’s book sheds new light on poet and preacher John Donne
The book reveals how Donne’s writings have circulated throughout history, and how religious readers, communities and movements affected the distribution and reception of his body of work.
Cato Laurencin
International symposium explores how nanoscience can help solve problems in energy, medicine
Cato Laurencin, M.D., Ph.D., a University Professor at the University of Connecticut, delivers keynote remarks at the International Symposium on Clusters and Nanomaterials on Monday.
Derek Prosser
VCU biology professor receives $1.3M grant to study membrane transport pathways in yeast
“We are interested in understanding the different ways that cells internalize material,” said Derek Prosser, an assistant professor in the Department of Biology.
Jeff W. Atkins, Ph.D., a post-doctoral researcher in VCU's Department of Biology, uses a lidar system to collect data in a forest at VCU's Rice Rivers Center in 2016
Structurally complex forests better at carbon sequestration
A new study led by VCU researchers may have implications for mitigation of climate change.
a brick wall with the phrase 'ms-13' painted on in graffiti style
Political rhetoric blows MS-13 violence out of proportion, VCU research finds
A new study by VCU researchers examined 20 years of violent crimes linked to MS-13 and found that political rhetoric greatly exaggerates the size of threat posed by the gang.
green leafed seedling growing up through the cracks of some tiles
For older adults, ‘hope’ may be a key piece for improving health, psychological and social well-being
VCU professor emeritus Everett Worthington, Ph.D., is co-author of a new study that sheds light on the role of hope in improving the lives of an aging population.
Alaattin Kaya
Grant aims to discover genes and environmental factors that strongly interact to modulate aging patterns
Kaya's four-year grant from NIH totals $512,000.
Tressie Cottom alongside the book cover for
Cottom earns top honor from American Sociological Association
VCU professor recognized for advancing public understanding of sociology.
student in a bar drinking a beer
A better approach to college drinking prevention?
CHS researchers are developing a program that focuses less on student drinking, and more on the underlying factors that lead people to drink.
A doctoral student reads brain imaging results at the VCU Social Psychology and Neuroscience Laboratory
Inside the brains of psychopaths: VCU research aims to understand antisocial empathy
David Chester, Ph.D., leads a research team that investigates the dark sides of human behavior, trying to discern the underpinnings of traits like violence, aggression and revenge.
Will Smith and Martin Lawrence, stars of
New ‘Bad Boys’ film taps expertise of VCU’s Santa Muerte scholar
“Much of her pop culture appeal is connected to surging interest in narco-culture, and one of Santa Muerte’s many diverse roles as folk saint is that of narco-saint,” says VCU expert Andrew Chesnut.
a dried-out piece of land as a result of climate change
Can Indigenous knowledge rooted in the deep past help address climate change?
VCU history professor Gregory Smithers will explore that question as part of a prestigious four-year Global Professorship in England.
Jeanine Guidry and Nicole O'Donnell
Media+Health Lab wins presidential research grant
The $49,689 award has been given for the research project "#Doesanybodycare: Encourage suicide-related bystander behavior on Instagram."
hazelnuts
A taste of Italy: Professor’s clinical research examines whether food really is the best medicine
Salvatore Carbone, a professor of kinesiology and health sciences, is studying the benefits of a diet rich in healthy fats.
a person smoking an e-cigarette
An often-made claim that e-cigarettes are ‘95% safer’ is not valid
Thomas Eissenberg of the Center for the Study of Tobacco Products at VCU was one of six experts who investigated the claim and found it unreliable and outdated.
Brooke Newman alongside the book cover for
Newman's book announced as finalist for the 2019 Frederick Douglass Book Prize
This coveted annual prize recognizes the best book on slavery, resistance and/or abolition published in the preceding year.
Tracey Dawson Cruz, Ph.D., professor and chair of the Department of Forensic Science, shows the plastic microchip developed by her team that is inserted into the device to prepare a sample for DNA analysis
This VCU professor’s invention speeds up how sexual assault DNA evidence is processed
The device could one day play a key role in reducing the nation’s backlog of untested rape kits and expedite crime solving.
Olivia Norman, assistant U.S. Attorney and district opioid coordinator with the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia, leads a session during the Silent No More symposium
At VCU, 170 experts gather to focus on solutions to opioid crisis
Participants were encouraged to “drive toward solutions and breaking down of silos” among law enforcement, medical, scientific and treatment professionals.
Santa Muerte altar
Q&A: Why folk saint Santa Muerte should be considered the ‘matron saint of the Mexican drug war’
A new paper by VCU professor R. Andrew Chesnut, Ph.D., and University of Alberta professor Kate Kingsbury, Ph.D., reveals the death deity is venerated by both sides of the drug war.