Jessica Maksut

Graduate Student, Human Development and Family Studies (Affiliate)

Research Overview

Broadly, my research focuses on social-ecological approaches to HIV prevention and health promotion for persons who are racial/ethnic, sexual orientation, and gender identity minorities. My goal is to better understand whether and how various community-level factors are linked to risk for HIV, particularly for sociodemographic groups who are disproportionately burdened by the epidemic, and to provide opportunities for interventions that extend beyond individual-level factors.

Currently, I am working on research projects involving the use of “big data” sources to explore community-level factors that may be associated with HIV testing behavior. One study uses data from AIDSVu to measure the availability of HIV testing services in each zip code in the Atlanta, GA metropolitan area to determine whether (a) a resident’s distance to the nearest testing site or (b) number of testing sites in the resident’s zip code is associated with their frequency of testing or likelihood of seroconverting.

In the near future, I intend to use social media (i.e., Twitter) data to model public sentiment about Truvada. In addition, I intend to link the sub-set of Truvada tweets that are geolocated to HIV surveillance data from AIDSVu to determine whether tweets about Truvada are more common in areas with higher HIV incidence and prevalence.


M.A., 2015, Human Development and Family Studies, University of Connecticut
B.A., 2012, Psychology, Quinnipiac University

Recent Publications

Contact Information
Mailing AddressHDFS Department
348 Mansfield Road
Unit 1058
Storrs Mansfield, CT 06269-1058