1. Profile
  2. Tara G. Mehta

Tara G. Mehta PhD

Tara G. Mehta
  • Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology
  • Director of Psychology Training
Contact Information
  • tmehta [at]
  • (312) 996-3910
  • Institute for Juvenile Research (IJR)
    1747 W. Roosevelt Rd.
    Chicago IL 60612
  • Room #:213

Dr. Mehta is an Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology and Director of Psychology Training in the Institute for Juvenile Research at the University of Illinois Chicago.  The central theme of Dr. Mehta’s work is to reduce the persistent disparities in access to mental health services for ethnic minority children and families. Dr. Mehta's work is based in an ecological public health model and she conducts community-based collaborative research focused on (1) developing culturally responsive, alternative models of mental health services for children and youth and (2) workforce development to enhance the capacity of community organizations to sustain accessible, effective services that enhance children’s and youth's well-being and promote mental health. Dr. Mehta is part of a team that has developed new mental health service models that promote children’s mental health and increase the accessibility, effectiveness, and sustainability of children’s mental health services.  Her specific interests include leveraging natural resources (teachers, staff) in settings critical to children’s development and mental health (school, after-school), activating paraprofessionals to promote and enhance services, and enhancing organizational factors that are crucial to maintain and sustain effective practices. Dr. Mehta has collaborated with multiple partners in Chicago, including the Chicago Public Schools, the Chicago Park District, community mental health centers, and non-profit organizations. 

In addition to research, Dr. Mehta maintains a caseload in the Colbeth Clinic, is a core faculty member of the Community Engagement and Collaboration core in the UIC Center for Clinical and Translational Science, and is an Affiliate of the UIC Clinical Psychology Program.

  • psychiatry

    Child and youth mental health
    Disparities in children and youth access to mental health services
    Community-based collaborative research
    Mental health services research
    Workforce development
    Asian American mental health and well-being

  • Mehta, T., Mahoney, J., Leppin, A., Stevens, K., Yousefi-Nooraie, R., Pollock, B., . . . Moore, J. (2021). Integrating dissemination and implementation sciences within Clinical and Translational Science Award Programs to advance translational research: Recommendations to national and local leaders. Journal of Clinical and Translational Science, 1-22. doi:10.1017/cts.2021.815

    Buckingham, S. L., Langhout, R. D., Rusch, D., Mehta, T., Rubén Chávez, N., Ferreira van Leer, K., Oberoi, A., Indart, M., Paloma, V., King, V. E., & Olson, B. (2021). The Roles of Settings in Supporting Immigrants’ Resistance to Injustice and Oppression: A Policy Position Statement by the Society for Community Research and Action: A policy Statement by the Society for Community Research and Action: Division 27 of the American Psychological Association. American Journal of Community Psychology, ajcp.12515.

    Towfighi, A., Orechwa, A. Z., Aragón, T. J., Atkins, M., Brown, A. F., Brown, J., ... & Herman, D. K. (2020). Bridging the gap between research, policy, and practice: Lessons learned from academic–public partnerships in the CTSA network. Journal of Clinical and Translational Science, 1-8.

    Mehta, T.G., Lakind, D., Rusch, D., Walden, A., & Atkins, M. (2019). Collaboration with Urban Community Stakeholders: Refining Paraprofessional-led Services to Promote Positive Parenting. American Journal of Community Psychology

    Lakind, D., Cua, G., Mehta, T. G., Rusch, D., & Atkins, M. S. (2019). Trajectories of parent participation in early intervention/prevention services: the case for flexible paraprofessional-led services. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, 1-15.

    Bustamante, E. E., Mehta, T.G., Cua, G., Frazier, S.L. (2018). After-School Program Utilization Patterns among Children with ADHD and Disruptive Behavior Disorders. Pediatric exercise science, 30(S1), S6.

    Mehta, T.G., Atkins, M., Neal, J., & Walden, A.L. (2018). Supporting mental health providers: The feasibility and promise of a virtual professional learning community. Evidence-Based Practice in Child and Adolescent Mental Health 1–16. 

    Affrunti, N., Mehta, T.G., Rusch, D., & Frazier, S., (2018). Job demands, resources, and stress among staff in after school programs: Neighborhood characteristics influence the association between job demands and job stress. Children and Youth Services Review 88 (2018): 366-374. 

    Ouellette, R. R., Frazier, S. L., Shernoff, E. S., Cappella, E., Mehta, T. G., Maríñez-Lora, A., … Atkins, M. S. (2018). Teacher Job Stress and Satisfaction in Urban Schools: Disentangling Individual-, Classroom-, and Organizational-Level Influences. Behavior Therapy, 49(4), 494–508. 

    Mehta, T. G., Atkins, M. S., & Frazier, S. L. (2013). The Organizational Health of Urban Elementary Schools: School Health and Teacher Functioning. School Mental Health, 1-11. DOI: 10.1007/s12310-012-9099-4 
    Schoenwald, S., Mehta, T.G., Frazier, S.L., & Shernoff, E. (2013).  Clinical supervision in effectiveness and implementation research. Special Issue (Eds. M. A. Southam-Gerow & B. McLeod). Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice

Title Description Investigator(s) Category Status
Building multi-level support for recreational staff members to infuse mental health promotion into everyday practices This project is a collaboration with Urban Initiatives, a citywide non-profit foundation that utilizes soccer and active play to promote youth physical and mental health in resource-scarce neighborhoods.  The project employs an iterative collaborative approach to enhance the organizational capacity of UI to impact youth physical and mental health by strengthening their workforce dev ACCESS for Mental Health On-going
BUILT: Building Unstoppable families through Intergenerational Lifestyle Transformation Project BUILT is a pilot intergenerational lifestyle intervention for children with ADHD and Disruptive Behavior Disorders. ACCESS for Mental Health On-going
Patient Navigators for Children's Community Mental Health Services in High Poverty Urban Communities This study is a NIMH-funded R01 that examines the effectiveness of paraprofessionals as navigators for children’s mental health services, in contrast with case managers and waitlist without navigation. This study is in collaboration with three social service agencies serving children and families from high poverty Chicago neighborhoods. ACCESS for Mental Health On-going
Leaders @ Play Our team has been collaborating with the Chicago Park District for the past decade to develop and implement strategies that capitalize on the inherent opportunities present in recreation to support and promote children’s mental health. Leaders @ Play was a program designed to promote mental health for participating adolescents and support healthy behavioral, social, and emotional funct Community Based Children and Family Mental Health Services Research Program Completed
LINKS Center The LINKS Center (P20 MH078458) was a virtual developing center created to advance research and practice on community-based models to promote the mental health needs of children living in urban poverty. Community Based Children and Family Mental Health Services Research Program Completed
Links to Learning Links to Learning was funded by the National Institute for Mental Health (NIMH) to examine a school-based model for mental health consultation to urban, high poverty schools that focuses on the key empirical predictors of children’s learning and uses parent and teacher key informants to facilitate program utilization and sustainability. Community Based Children and Family Mental Health Services Research Program Completed
Partners Achieving School Success (PASS) PASS was a school based mental health prevention and early intervention program for children in pre-kindergarten through third grade.  Our team collaborated with four social service agencies on a school-based prevention and early intervention program for youth in K-3rd grade living in impoverished communities in Chicago (approximately n=700). Community Based Children and Family Mental Health Services Research Program Completed
Virtual Professional Learning Communities: A social network perspective (VPLC) In collaboration with a large state entity, two virtual professional learning communities (VPLCs) were developed to support community mental health providers following a 12-month evidence-based practices (EBP) training. Community Based Children and Family Mental Health Services Research Program Completed

*System-generated list from psychiatry research website.