May 26th, 2020

Consortium Spring 2020 Small Grant Winners Announced

The Johns Hopkins Consortium for School-Based Health Solutions is pleased to announce awards for its Spring 2020 Small Grants Program. The Consortium Small Grants Program was developed to foster research in school-based health solutions addressing barriers to health and wellness in underserved students.

From the numerous, impressive applications we received, the Consortium has selected three winning research proposals addressing important issues at the intersection of health and education. The Consortium supports and advocates for innovative school-based health initiatives based in Baltimore and around the country.

The winning Spring 2020 Small Grant proposals are:


Faculty Project

Vanya Jones

School interventions to interrupt conflicts before they become violent
Principal Investigator: Vanya Jones, PhD, MPH, Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health

Project Overview: Interventions that interrupt conflicts before they become violent, including The Safe Streets Program, have shown promise for reducing gun violence. In this small-grant funded project, the team will conduct formative qualitative work in partnership with key school and community stakeholders to adapt this model for delivery in schools. The Safe Streets for Schools initiative will train credible messengers to intervene escalating conflicts between students. This formative work will inform next steps in implementing Safe Streets for Schools in Baltimore.

Student Projects

Sandra Zaeh

Michelle Eakin

Meredith C. McCormack

Michelle Eakin

Engaging stakeholders to reduce asthma disparities in Baltimore City Public Schools
Student: Sandra Zaeh, MD, MS, Johns Hopkins University (JHU) School of Medicine
Faculty Mentor: Meredith C. McCormack, MD, MHS, JHU School of Medicine
Faculty Mentor: Michelle Eakin, MA, PhD, JHU School of Medicine

Project Overview: Asthma remains the most common pediatric chronic disease, with high morbidity among low income and minority children. The Baltimore Healthy Schools Project has demonstrated school environments are associated with student performance and health outcomes. Working with the MICA Center for Social Design, the team will design materials to disseminate strategies for improving air quality and reducing allergens in schools, with the goal of improving overall student health. Creation of these educational materials will be guided by findings collected from school stakeholder interviews. The team will also hold group education sessions with school and community stakeholders to disseminate the educational materials.


Rachel Strodel

Hannah Wallace

Colleen Christmas

Cultivating Authentic Family Engagement in a Community School
Students: Rachel Strodel, MD candidate, Johns Hopkins University (JHU) School of Medicine
Co-investigator: Hannah Wallace, MSc, JHU Bloomberg School of Public Health
Faculty Mentor: Colleen Christmas, MD, FACP, JHU School of Medicine

Project Overview: Family engagement is critical to student learning and wellbeing. This project aims to increase authentic family engagement by conducting a community needs assessment and connecting families to accessible and trusted community resources through monthly parent workshops at the Commodore John Rodgers Elementary and Middle School.