Jennifer M. Whitehill

Associate Professor
338 Arnold House


B.S., Tufts University, 2004; Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University, 2011; Postdoctoral Fellowship, University of Washington, 2011-2013

Area(s) of Specialization: 

Child and Adolescent Injury Prevention; Substance Use Prevention; Social Media; Mobile Technology and Health (mHealth)

Research Description: 

My research centers on preventing both intentional and unintentional injuries among youth and young adults though development, implementation, and evaluation of novel behavioral approaches grounded in social norms. My current work focuses on understanding the role of new media technologies such as mobile devices and social networking sites as both a risk factor for injury and as a possible avenue for prevention. Specific areas of focus include substance use (alcohol, marijuana, and other drugs), depression, and youth violence. I use mixed methods, incorporating qualitative and quantitative research approaches.

In the Media:

UMass Researchers contribute to key statewide marijuana study (Daily Hampshire Gazette)

Study finds one in five Massachusetts adults recently consumed marijuana (New England Public Radio)

Why do more teens report driving stoned than drunk? (Boston Globe)

Key Publications: 

Whitehill JM, Wilner M, Rataj S, Moreno MA. College students’ use of transportation network companies: an opportunity to decrease substance-impaired driving. Journal of American College Health. In Press.

Whitehill JM, Rodriguez-Monguio R, Doucette M, Flom EA. Driving and riding under the influence of recent marijuana use: Risk factors among a racially diverse sample of young adults. Journal of Ethnicity in Substance Abuse. 2018 Feb 12: 1-19. [Epub ahead of print].

Thompson L, Rivara F, Whitehill JM. Prevalence of marijuana-related traffic on Twitter, 2012-2013: A content analysis. Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking. 2015 Jun; 18(6):311-9.

Whitehill JM, Pumper MA, Moreno MA. Emerging adults' use of alcohol and social networking sites during a large street festival: A real-time interview study. Substance Abuse Treatment Prevention and Policy. 2015 May 20:10:21.

Whitehill JM, Rivara FP, Moreno MA. Substance-using drivers and their passengers: Prevalence and risk factors among underage college students. JAMA Pediatrics. 2014 Jul;168(7):618-24.

Whitehill JM, Webster DW, Vernick JS. Street conflict mediation to prevent youth violence: Conflict characteristics and outcomes. Injury Prevention. 2013 Jun; 19(3):204-209.