Johns Hopkins University Leadership Education in Adolescent Health


Project Director:

Hoover Adger, Jr., MD, MPH, MBA


The mission of the JHU LEAH training program is to develop the next generation of leaders in the most innovative
and effective
interdisciplinary approaches to adolescent health promotion and disease prevention with a primary goal
of reducing health disparities.
Throughout our training the focus will be on approaches that will reduce healthA�disparities
so that the next generation of African AmericanA�
and Latino youth will enter adulthood with health status on par with the
majority of European American adults.

Philosophy and Guiding Principles:

  • Our role as clinical practitioners and leaders in adolescent health is to insure that adolescents
    and young adults reachA�
    their full potential as adults while suffering the fewest harms and having
    the most positive experiences as they pass through this critical period of growth and development.
  • Using an innovative case study curriculum as well as seminars and clinical practice experiences,
    the program trains individuals from five core disciplines including medicine, social work, nutrition,
    psychology, and nursing to integrate their skills through demonstrated leadership.
  • The JHU Disparities LEAH program focuses on a subset of morbidities that disproportionately
    affect youth of color.
  • Our program focuses on strengthening and expanding the next generation of leaders in the fields of
    clinical and public adolescent health with special attention to the diversity of the work force.

Scientific & Research Capabilities


Research is an integral component of the training program. A cross-cutting theme to this research is a focus on eliminating racial and ethnic disparities in the health of adolescent populations. Along with the Division of General pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, primary research partners include the Johns Hopkins Center for Adolescent Health and the Johns Hopkins Center for the Prevention of Youth Violence, both of which are prevention research centers funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Training in nutrition is provided through the Center for Human Nutrition. This collaboration ensures that faculty and trainees have access to applied and basic adolescent health research opportunities and activities in key areas of adolescent health. Faculty members affiliated with the research activities represent several departments, centers, and schools throughout Johns Hopkins University.

The diversity of research projects pertinent to health disparities includes:

  • analyses of national and ethnographic data to identify adolescent malesa�� reproductive health needs and barriers to care
  • evaluations of programs aimed at improving the academic, nutritional and health outcomes among Baltimore City middle-school students
  • studies of teen-dating violence
  • the development and evaluation of a mental health intervention for out-of-school youth
  • analyses of population-based data on low-income urban families to examine predictive pathways linking neighborhood risk, parenting, and adolescent outcomes for diverse racial, ethnic, and immigrant populations biaxin, candapills.
  • a partnership with the Baltimore City Health Department to develop and evaluate an intervention designed to enhance the family planning clinic’s role and encourage parent involvement in adolescent contraceptive method choice and continuation
  • investigation of race, ethnic, gender and age differences in treatment outcomes and services received for youth enrolled in a mental health program serving youth and families with serious emotional disturbance
  • the development of a research structure and strategies capable of evaluating the effectiveness and sustainability of promising and evidence based interventions studiesA�
  • the study of relationships between the built environment, drug markets, and the transmission of sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, among urban, minority youth
  • The development and evaluation of interventions to promote healthy lifestyle choices (diet and physical activity) for children, including adolescents
  • Nutritional issues and adolescent pregnancy


Funding sources for research projects include Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Maternal Child Health Bureau (MCHB), National Institutes of Health (NIAAA, NIAID, NICHD, NIDA), Baltimore City Health Department, Baltimore Community Foundation, Center For AIDS Research.

For further information about the program and research opportunities, contact:

Dr. Hoover Adger, Jr., MD MPH MBA
Johns Hopkins LEAH Program Director
Professor, Department of Pediatrics
Johns Hopkins School of Medicine
Phone: 443-287-8944

Academic Programs:

The JHU LEAH program is housed in the Section of Adolescent Medicine in the Division of General Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine in the Department of Pediatrics at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. The Section houses the Adolescent Health Promotion Research Training Program (T32), funded by NICHD to provide research training to physicians in the Adolescent Medicine Fellowship. The Section is also home of the Adolescent Health Research Group (AHRG) which was formed in 1999 and consists of investigators and staff who work together to conduct fundamental and applied public health research directed at prevention and control of sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV. The JHU LEAH program has strong ties to other schools and institutions located on or near the campus including the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health (JHBSPH), the Johns Hopkins Hospital, the School of Nursing, and others. Within JHBSPH, the Section works most closely with the Department of Population, Family and Reproductive Health (PFRH) which is chaired by Dr. Robert Blum. PFRH is an interdisciplinary department whose research, teaching, and practice address population change, sexual and reproductive health, and maternal and child health. There is an Adolescent Health Track in PFRH for masters and doctoral students. PFRH also houses the Johns Hopkins Center for Adolescent Health Promotion and Disease Prevention. The Center is one of 33 Prevention Research Centers supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.