Melissa Lippold, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
School of Social Work
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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Dr. Lippold is an Assistant Professor in The School of Social Work at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her research focuses on 1) how parenting and the parent-child relationship may influence the development and prevention of youth substance use and other risky behaviors; 2) how the parent-child relationship may impact youth stress-related physiology and physical health; and 3) the design and implementation of family based interventions to promote healthy outcomes for adolescents and their parents. Dr. Lippold received her Ph.D. in Human Development and Family Studies from the Pennsylvania State University in 2012, where she was mentored by Mark Greenberg in the Prevention Research Center. Her dissertation, which was supported by a Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) from the National Institute of Drug Abuse, investigated combinations of behaviors related to parental knowledge of youth activities and their relation to early adolescent substance use and delinquency. Dr. Lippold was a postdoctoral scholar at Penn State from 2012-2013, where received additional training from Susan McHale and David Almeida on the use of daily diary data and biomarkers of youth health, such as cortisol. She has been involved with multiple intervention projects including the PROSPER project (a large scale effectiveness trial of substance use prevention programs and their diffusion into local communities), the Work, Family, Health project (a randomized trial of a workplace intervention aimed to promote the health of employees and their families), and the Strengthening Families Program (a family-based substance use prevention program for early adolescents). Prior to receiving her Ph.D., she worked in direct practice with children and families involved in the child welfare system and conducted applied policy research at The Chapin Hall Center for Children at The University of Chicago. She holds a dual Master’s degree in Social Work and Public Policy (with honors) from The University of Chicago.