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08/23/23 - BOSTON, MA. - Idia Thurston, Health Sciences, Applied Psychology and Bouve, poses for a headshot in Blackman Auditorium on campus at Northeastern University on Wednesday August 23, 2023. Photo by Adam Glanzman for Northeastern University

Professor of Health Sciences and Applied Psychology & Associate Director of the Institute for Health Equity and Social Justice Research, Affiliate Professor of Africana Studies

Department of Cultures, Societies, and Global Studies; Africana Studies Program

Idia Binitie Thurston, PhD (she/her) is a licensed clinical psychologist, professor of health sciences and applied psychology, Affiliate Professor of Africana Studies, and Associate Director of the Institute for Health Equity and Social Justice Research at Northeastern University. Her research explores how race, ethnicity, social class, gender, size, and sexuality intersect and influence health outcomes, inequities, and well-being in youth and families. She directs the CHANGE lab, where she collaborates with scholars, youth, and community organizations to develop and disseminate strengths-based, culturally-responsive tools that reduce stigma, enhance wellness, and promote resilience. She is passionate about mentoring, dismantling structural and systemic barriers, and promoting career pathways for individuals underrepresented in health sciences.


View CV
  • 2024, APA Fellow, Division 54 Society of Pediatric Psychology
  • 2023, APA Mid-Career Award for Outstanding Contributions to Benefit Children, Youth, and Families, Washington, DC
  • 2022, Inaugural Citizen Psychologist Award, Texas Psychological Association, San Antonio, TX
  • 2021, Presidential Citation, American Psychological Association, Washington, DC
  • 2019, Foremothers Mentorship Early Career Award, Div 35, Section 1, APA, Chicago, IL
  • Thurston, I. B., Alegria, M., Hood, K. B., Miller, G., Wilton, L., & Holden, K. (2023). How Psychologists Can Help Achieve Equity in Heath Care– Advancing Innovative Partnerships and Models of Care Delivery: Introduction to the Special Issue. American Psychologist, 78, 73–81.
  • ^Buchanan, N., ^Perez, M., ^Prinstein, M. J., & ^Thurston, I. B. (2021). Upending Racism in Psychological Science: Strategies to Change How Our Science is Conducted, Reported, Reviewed & Disseminated. American Psychologist, 76, 1097-1112.
  • Thurston, I. B., Howell, K. H., *Kaufman, C. C., *Mandell, J. E., & *Decker, K. M. (2021).  Parenting in Matched-Pairs of Women of Color Experiencing Intimate Partner Violence living with and without HIV. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 34, 1005-1015
  • Thurston, I. B., *Decker, K. M., *Kamody, R. C., *Kaufman, C. C., *Maye, C. E., Richmond, T. K., & Sonneville, K. R. (2021). The Scale Matters: Assessing Body Size with Figure Rating Scales in a Diverse Sample of Young Adults. Eating and Weight Disorders – Studies on Anorexia, Bulimia and Obesity.

Postdoctoral Fellowship,  Boston Children’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Division of Adolescent/Young Adult Medicine, Leadership Education in Adolescent Health (LEAH), 2010 – 2011

Postdoctoral Fellowship, Boston Children’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School, NIMH Diversity Research Fellowship, Division of General Pediatrics, 2011 – 2013

8/2023 – 12/2024, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Disseminating and Implementing Strategies for Institutional Change in DEI across Academic Institutions.

Role: Multiple Principal Investigator (MPI Alegria, Thurston)

8/2022-7/2027, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (R25 AI170379), NIAID STAR: Stimulating Training and Access to Research Experiences for Minority and Underrepresented Populations

Role: Co-Investigator (MPI Iwelunmor, Tucker)