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Projects

Current Projects

Virginia Tech 4/16 Shooting

We collected survey data pertaining to traumatic stress as well as a range of psychological and issues in a sample of Virginia Tech students. These data has catalyzed a range of projects spanning symptom-specific analyses, public health issues such as access to care, protective and risk factors, etc. We also collected parallel survey data pertaining to traumatic stress as well as a range of psychological and issues in a sample of Virginia Tech faculty. The process of analyzing this data is still in its beginning stages, and promises to offer the potential for a range of projects spanning symptom-specific analyses, public health issues such as access to care, protective and risk factors, etc.

Psychophysiology of Stress and Trauma

We are currently engaged in a collaboration with Dr. Bruce Friedman's Mind-Body Lab. The project includes a survey component recruiting an expected sample of roughly 200 VT undergraduates filling out a comprehensive battery of survey questions pertaining to a wide range of psychological disorders, physical health disorders, behavioral health characteristics, substance use, and social characteristics. Additionally, a subset of survey respondents will be brought in for a lab study measuring HRV and startle in a fear-learning paradigm over three time points during a three week span. Planned analyses include: 1) An RDoC-inspired transdiagnostic examination of fear learning, safety signal learning, and retention across DSM fear-related disorders and 2) An RDoC-inspired examination of fear versus anxiety.

The Impact of Historical and Systematic Trauma on People of Color

PTSD Symptom-level analysis

Past Projects

Hurricane Katrina Recovery Effort

Dr. Jones consoles a young victim of Hurricane Katrina during recovery efforts along the Gulf coast.

Dr. Jones consoles a young victim of Hurricane Katrina during recovery efforts along the Gulf coast.

After Hurricanes Katrina and Rita ravaged the states of Louisiana and Mississippi, Dr. Jones was deployed to the area for the SAMHSA mental health consultant group. Reaching the area less than three weeks after the disaster, Dr. Jones traveled to both Louisiana and later to Gulfport, Mississippi where he served as a team leader. Since then Dr. Jones has traveled to the area on five occasions. His work in the area has included visits to schools and disaster recovery centers and state offices. Most notably, Dr. Jones met with First Lady Laura Bush at Celebration Church outside Baton Rouge, where they and other officials participated in a briefing discussing conditions and needs of children affected by Katrina.

Harvard Medical School Study

Dr. Jones was also been appointed to the Hurricane Katrina Community Advisory Group administered by the Department of Health Care Policy at the Harvard Medical School. This group conducted a random national survey of 250,000 homes (funded by the National Institute on Mental Health) to ascertain the mental health consequences of the hurricanes. The researchers will identify a cohort of approximately 2000 individuals directly affected and displaced by the hurricanes and follow them for 2 years to assess their level of coping with physical and mental health issues, as well as the logistical difficulties associated with relocating or returning to some sense of a normal routine. 

Dr. Jones was featured in an recent article in the Virginia Tech College of Science Magazine for his role in the REACT project.

Dr. Jones was featured in an recent article in the Virginia Tech College of Science Magazine for his role in the REACT project.

REAACT Project

Dr. Jones spearheaded a project in conjunction with the Yale Child Study Center at Yale University designed to treat children following residential fire. The project, entitled Recovery Effort after Adult and Child Trauma (REAACT), adapted the Yale Child Study Center's Child Development Community Policing Program (CD-CP) model, to involve firefighters. Through this project, firefighters learned about the negative effects of fire on children. At the scene of a fire, firefighters are encouraged to contact REAACT clinicians who will make initial contact with the family. This partnership enables our clinicians to connect with families immediately following the traumatic incident.

NIMH Grant

He and his team have studied the influence of major technological and natural disasters on children's functioning for the past 30 years. His research team completed a National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) grant assessing the impact of residential fire on children and their parents. Two recent grants from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) enabled his group to study both injured and non-injured children following fire-related trauma. The ascertainment of mediators and moderators of distress, including coping and social support, is also an important target area.