Alyssa M. Hernandez

Alyssa seeks to transform current systems of mental and behavioral healthcare that exclude minoritized communities and perpetuate inequities. Racially and ethnically minoritized children with psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disabilities face significant barriers to quality services and supports. These challenges are further exacerbated when families are of low socioeconomic status, experience language barriers, and live in marginalized and under-resourced communities. Alyssa is interested in applying development economic approaches to improve and complement support services, and understanding how to incorporate cultural and contextual factors to improve intervention implementation and outcomes. She conducts research in community settings, such as public schools and community clinics, and in partnership with community members. Alyssa believes such research can provide a strong foundation toward improving federal and state public health programs while empowering local communities.

Growing up along the U.S.-Mexico border in the Rio Grande Valley, Alyssa understands the profound obstacles marginalized communities face in accessing quality healthcare services and supports. She recognizes that everyone holds value and expertise, a belief rooted in her Tejano culture. Her research will be co-created and belong to these communities.


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