Dr. Nicole Mattocks’ research focuses on the relationship between the urban environment – physical, social, and natural - and health outcomes for city residents. More specifically, she is interested in understanding how city residents interact with and benefit from urban green spaces in their neighborhood. These interests draw upon her years of practice experience as a social worker and community organizer in Baltimore and rural North Carolina, where she worked in the areas of community engagement and social capital development in low-income communities, with a particular focus on improving the physical environment.
Dr. Mattocks earned her PhD in Social Work at the University of Maryland, Baltimore, as well as her MSW; her social work education began with her BSW at the University of North Carolina, Wilmington. Her doctoral dissertation examined the ways in which the urban neighborhood environment influenced mental health for Baltimore City residents.
As a Postdoctoral Research Fellowship here at the School of Social Work, she collaborates with her mentor Dr. Jay Unick to manage an NIH-funded medication adherence study for individuals with severe and persistent mental illness. This project has presented her the opportunity to expand her skillset by engaging in intervention research. She coordinates and facilitates data collection, manages primary and secondary data, and supports grant-writing activities to further expand this important area of research. She continues to teach in the MSW program as an adjunct instructor, and is co-developing a pilot research course on conducting neighborhood research in Baltimore City with her mentor.