Faye Belgrave, Ph.D.


University Professor
Health Psychology
820 W Franklin, rm 101
(804) 827-3908

Professor (tenured)
Health Psychology (primary), Social Psychology (secondary)
Director, Center for Cultural Experiences in Prevention
Ph.D. (1982), University of Maryland, College Park


Center for Cultural Experiences in Prevention

Research Interests

My work is community and intervention focused and attends to aspects of culture (gender, ethnicity, age, and place, etc.) to promote well-being among African American youth and young adults. I work collaboratively with community based agencies to identify and implement relevant programming and research. Recent projects provided culturally integrated substance abuse, HIV prevention, and sex education curriculums to African American college students and students attending middle school. In another project, we implemented and evaluated a culturally specific HIV prevention intervention for African American females; this project was expanded by including a male component. Another study examines the role of culture and community in tobacco and other drug use among African American youth in rural and urban communities. Additionally, my work has involved other areas of health promotion (e.g., prevention of cancer, diabetes, depression) and with other ethnic minority populations (e.g., Latinas and Asian Americans). My activities and research have included collaborative work with local school systems, Churches and faith based institutions, community based youth servicing agencies, local health clinics, and Black Colleges and Universities among others. My most recent work has been funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the Office on Women's Health.

Selected Publications

Abrams, J., Maxwell, M., Pope, M., & Belgrave, F. Z. (2014). Carrying the world with the grace of a lady and the grit of a warrior: Deepening our understanding of the 'Strong Black Woman' Schema." Psychology of Women’s Quarterly, 0361684314541418.
Maxwell, M., Abrams, J., Brevard, J., & Belgrave, F. Z. (2014). What’s color got to do with it?: Skin color, skin color satisfaction, racial identity, and internalized racism among African American college students. The Journal of Black Psychology, 0095798414542299.
Nguyen,  A. B., Clark, T. T., & Belgrave, F. Z. (2014). Gender roles and acculturation: Relationships with cancer screening among Vietnamese American women.  Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology, 20, 87-97.
Brevard, J., Maxwell, M., Hood, K., Belgrave, F. Z. (2013). Feeling safe. Intergenerational connections and neighborhood disorganization among urban and rural African American youth.  Journal of Community Psychology, 41, 992-1004.
Belgrave, F. Z., & Allison, K. W. (2013). African American psychology: From Africa to America. 3rd Edition. Thousand Oaks: Sage.

Recent Courses

  • Social Psychology, graduate level
  • Program Evaluation, graduate level
  • African American Psychology, undergraduate level

Recent Grants

Principal Investigator. HIV and Substance Abuse Prevention among African American College Students. Funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. (2010-2015, 1.5 million).

Co-Investigator. Exploring Tobacco Dependence among African American Men in Barbershops. Funded by the National Cancer Institute, $153,000 (2008-2010) (Alton Hart, PI).

Co-Principal Investigator. Gumboyaya III – Sister Voices. Funded by HHS, Office on Women's Health to Virginia Commonwealth University, $320,000 (2006-2010). (Maya Corneille, Co-PI)

Principal Investigator. Pathways to Tobacco Smoking among African American Youth. Funded by the Virginia Tobacco Settlement Foundation (2006-2010, $720,000).


  • VCU Council for Community Engagement’s 2016-17 Currents of Change Award for Exemplary Partnership in Research (Center for Cultural Experiences in Prevention). Award recognizes exceptional university-community partnerships.
  • Presidential Awards for Community Multicultural Enrichment (PACME Award), VCU, 2014.  Award recognizes individual who has made significant contributions to enhance VCU’s commitment to diversity.
  • Riese-Melton Award, Virginia Commonwealth University, 2014.  Award given for outstanding contributions to cross-cultural relations. 
  • American Psychological Association, Minority Fellowship Program, 2010. James Jones Lifetime Achievement Award.
  • State Council of Higher Education in Virginia, Outstanding Faculty, State of Virginia, 2008. (Annual award given to twelve faculties selected from universities, colleges, and community colleges in State of Virginia).
  • Virginia Commonwealth University. Distinguished Teaching Award, 2007. (Annual award given to outstanding teaching faculty at Virginia Commonwealth University).
  • Addie Jane Key Prevention Award. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, 2007. (Annual award given to person with demonstrated commitment to prevention programming by SAMHSA).
  • Distinguished Teacher Award. College of Humanities and Sciences, Virginia Commonwealth University, 2006. (Annual award given to faculty in the College of Humanities and Sciences at VCU).

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