Dr. Kalynda C. Smith, a North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (NC A&T) psychology professor, has received a $545,686 grant to study how social media affects Black women’s health.
More specifically, Smith seeks to investigate how social media that emphasizes physical appearance affects diet and fitness habits of Generation Z Black/African American women.
“These women have been exposed to social media messages the majority of their lives, compared with older groups, but there is little research that examines how these messages influence their self-presentation, self-esteem and health habits,” said Smith. “This study will address how social media can be used as a preventative measure to address chronic conditions, like diabetes, that disproportionately affect the Black/African American community in the United States.
The four-year grant is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH)/National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK).
Smith’s work will involve up to four Black/African American psychology undergraduates and two students in the M.S. in health psychology program, preparing them for psychology career pathways.