Research Projects

Are you or your organization interested in supporting sexual health research? To make a general contribution to the MSHRC or to support or initiate a specific project, please contact Christopher Fisher, PhD at or 402.559.3835.

Current MSHRC Research Projects

Midlands LGBT Community Needs Assessment
Christopher M. Fisher, PhD, Jay A. Irwin, PhD, & Jason D. Coleman, PhD, MSPH
In 2010, in collaboration with numerous community partners from across the state of Nebraska, MSHRC faculty launched the first lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community needs assessment in Nebraska. The survey assessed the physical, mental, social, and sexual health of the LGBT community.

Barriers to Faith-Based HIV Prevention
Jason D. Coleman, PhD, MSPH
This project aims to determine barriers to HIV prevention in faith-based organizations and houses of worship.

Increasing Sensitivity to LGBT Students
Jason D. Coleman, PhD, MSPH
This project focuses on the development and implementation of a LGBT sensitivity training for educators in Nebraska.

HIV Stigma in the Midlands
Christopher M. Fisher, PhD
This project seeks to evaluate perceived stigma among HIV-positive individuals in Nebraska, stigma toward HIV-positive individuals, and the potential for a social media campaign to reduce stigma.

Evaluation of the Popular Opinion Leader (POL) Intervention
Christopher M. Fisher, PhD
This evaluation seeks to qualitatively assess the longer-term impacts of the POL program on participants from Nebraska. 

Ongoing Research Projects by MSHRC Faculty

Project FAITH (Fostering AIDS Initiatives that Heal)
Jason D. Coleman, PhD, MSPH
This project of the South Carolina HIV/AIDS Council focuses on HIV prevention and stigma elimination in faith-based organizations and communities.

YEAH!:  Youth Empowered Against HIV
Jason D. Coleman, PhD, MSPH
This project incorporates principles of positive youth development into a framework for training peer leaders among young gay, bisexual, and queer men.  In addition to training peer leaders, YEAH! focuses on changing social and physical environments to promote safer sexual behavior and decision making.

An Epidemiological Study of Sexually Transmitted Infections in North Omaha
K.M. Monirul Islam, MD, PhD
Focus groups, STI testing, and surveys will be used to better understand the prevalence of Chlamydia and gonorrhea, identify factors associated with not seeking medical treatment, identify risk factors of STIs, and determine the feasibility of mail based STI screenings in young adults from the North Omaha community.

Recently Completed Projects by MSHRC Faculty

Lesbian Social Life Study
Jay A. Irwin, PhD
A mixed-method study of lesbian-identified women in the Southeastern United States (AL, AR, FL, GA, KY, LA, MS, NC, SC, TN, TX, VA, WV) investigating social ties through friendship, organizational, and familial ties, physical and mental health, conceptualizations of lesbian health, and the impacts of stressors such as homophobia, stigma, and discrimination.

South Carolina LGBT Needs Assessment
Jason D. Coleman, PhD, MSPH
This project was a state-wide assessment to determine the demographics and needs of LGBT persons in South Carolina.

Sexual Health Education Among Youth-Serving Community-Based Organizations (CBOs)
Christopher M. Fisher, PhD
This statewide survey sought to assess the potential for CBOs to provide sexual health information to adolescents served by the organizations.

Development of the BASSIC (Brothers Adopting Safer Sex in Communities) Training Intervention: 
Jason D. Coleman, PhD, MSPH
In conjunction with the South Carolina HIV/AIDS Council, this project adapted the Be Proud, Be Responsible intervention for use with young African American men who have sex with men.

Nurturing the Tree of Life
Jason D. Coleman, PhD, MSPH
This project, conducted with the South Carolina HIV/AIDS Council, focused on the development and refinement of an HIV prevention intervention designed for use in Historically Black Colleges and Universities.