University of Vermont

Faculty Biography

Faculty Biography | Bernice Garnett

Bernice Garnett

Bernice Garnett, S.c.D.Assistant Professor

Contact Information:
Waterman 539A
(802) 656-2187

Bernice Garnett is a public health prevention scientist interested in childhood obesity and eating disorders prevention, bullying, discrimination and harassment, youth health disparities, food access and food security, community based participatory research and school climate. School based health promotion and community strategies to promote health and wellness are a central focus of her work. She is interested in integrating interdisciplinary public health undergraduate training in teacher education and other traditional undergraduate disciplines. Bernice Garnett is a faculty member of the Food Systems Initiative at the University of Vermont and a member of the Vermont Harassment, Hazing and Bullying Prevention Advisory Council.

Areas of Expertise:

Adolescent Development; Mental Health; Race and Racism; Research Methods; School Transformation

  • Adolescent Health and Public Health: Research focused on comprehensive, place-based and theoretically informed interventions to promote childhood healthy weight across racially/ethnically diverse populations. Bullying prevention and the intersection with discrimination and harassment among youth.


Selected Publications

  • Garnett, B.R., Masyn, K.E., Austin, S.B., Williams, D.R., Viswanath, K., (2015). Coping styles of adolescents experiencing multiple forms of discrimination and bullying: Evidence from a sample of ethnically diverse urban youth, Journal of School Health, 85(2) 109-117.  [abstract]
  • Kroshus, E., Garnett, B.R., Hawrilenko, M., Baugh, C.M., Calzo, J., (2015). Concussion under-reporting and pressure from coaches, teammates, fans, and parents. Social Science and Medicine, 134; 66-75.  [abstract]
  • Garnett, B.R., Buelow, R., Franko, D.L., Becker, C., Rodgers, R.F., Austin, S.B. (2014). The Importance of Campaign Saliency as a Predictor of Attitude and Behavior Change: A Pilot Evaluation of Social Marketing Campaign Fat Talk Free Week. Health Communication, 29(10) 984-995.  [abstract]
  • Carman, C., Raveche Garnett, B., Wendel, J., Hyde, J., & Rall Chomitz, V. (2013). Community Asset Identification in Support of a Place-Based, Early Childhood Obesity Prevention and School Readiness Initiative. Frontiers in Public Health Services and Systems Research, 2(3), 5.  [abstract]
  • Garnett B.R., Masyn K.E., Bryn S.B., Miller M, Williams D.R., Viswanath, K., (2014). The Intersectionality of Discrimination Attributes and Bullying among Youth: An Applied Latent Class Analysis. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 43(8) 1225-1239  [abstract]
  • Garnett, B. R., Rosenberg, K. D., & Morris, D. S. (2013). Consumption of soda and other sugar-sweetened beverages by 2-year-olds: findings from a population-based survey. Public Health Nutrition, 16(10), 1760-1767.  [abstract]
  • Garnett, B.R., Wendel, J., Banks, C., Goodridge A., Harding R., Harris, R., Hacker, K., Chomitz V.R., (2014). Challenges of Data Dissemination Efforts within a Community Based Participatory Project About Persistent Racial Disparities in Excess Weight. Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education and Action (accepted).

Selected Presentations

  • Garnett, B.R., Vierling, D., Gleason, C., Becker, K., DiCenzo, D., Mongeone, L. A Pilot Evaluation of a Before School Incentive-based Physical Activity Program at the Integrated Arts Academy in Burlington, VT. Poster Presentation at the 2015 Society for Research on Child Development (SRCD) Biennial Meeting, Philadelphia, PA: March 2015.
  • Garnett, B.R., Vierling, D., Gleason, C., Becker, K., DiCenzo, D., Mongeon, L., (October 2014). A pilot evaluation of Move it Move it! A before school incentive-based physical activity program at the Integrated Arts Academy in Burlington, VT. Poster Presented at the Vermont Center on Behavior and Health Annual Conference, Burlington, VT
  • Garnett, B.R., & Brion-Meisels, G., (April 2014). Toward and Integrated and Transdisciplinary Theory of Bullying and Discrimination Prevention. Paper presented at the meeting of the New England Educational Research Organization, West Dover, VT.
  • Garnett, B.R. (2013, November) Coping styles of adolescents experiencing multiple forms of discrimination: Evidence from a sample of ethnically diverse urban youth. Paper presented at the American Public Health Association Annual Meeting, Boston, MA.
  • Garnett, B.R., (November 2013). Integrating public health, education and traditional health related disciplines to create a transdisciplinary undergraduate education structure within a College of Education and Social Work. Paper presented at the Undergraduate for Public Health Education Summit, Boston, MA


  • A Community-based Pilot Evaluation of Move It Move It!: A Before School Physical Activity Program at the Integrated Arts Academy at HO Wheeler [$6,500] from University of Vermont, College of Education and Social Services : This project seeks to conduct a pilot evaluation of the Integrated Arts Academy at HO Wheeler (IAA)s Move it Move it! to systematically assess the impact of a before school physical activity program on three domains of child health and development: academic, social, and physical. Through the application of community based participatory evaluation methods (Braithwaite et al., 2013), this project aims to collaboratively assess the impact of Move it Move it!, partnering with key school stakeholders and community members to ensure reciprocity in research activities, community engagement and ownership and applicability of evaluation findings. Our research design is informed by two specific research aims: 1) To assess the impact of a before school physical activity program on youth: a) academic achievement and school success, b) social relationships and classroom behavior and, c) physical health indicators including body mass index (BMI) and self-esteem. 2) To examine a dose-response relationship between the levels of student engagement with Move it Move it!, as measured by student miles walked/run, across three domains of child health and development: social, physical and academic. (2014-02-10)
    Role: Principal Investigator
  • Strengthening the Capacity of Schools and Primary Care Physicians to Promote Youth Mental and Behavioral Health through Positive School Climate [$23,000] from State of Vermont Department of Health : As school climate and school/community connectedness are critical to academic success and positive social, emotional and behavioral development, this project seeks to explicitly focus on the impact of school climate and community connectedness as a mechanism to improve and promote the mental, behavioral and academic health of Vermont youth. Goals: 1) To strengthen the institutional capacity of Vermont schools, primary care practices, community health centers, community based organizations, and states agencies serving Vermont youth, particularly Medicaid-eligible youth and their families, to promote youth mental, behavioral, and academic health through positive school climate and community connectedness. 2) To create stronger linkages between the Vermont Department of Health (VDH), Vermont Agency of Education (AOE) and the Vermont Department of Mental health (DMH) related to the coordination of data and services as it pertains to youth mental and behavioral health. 3) To create a sustainable inter-professional summer institute on best practices for the prevention and treatment of youth mental and behavioral health problems within the school context, attracting professionals from education, social work, nursing, primary care, counseling and mental health services and other school professionals. (2014-07-01)
    Role: Principal Investigator

Current Courses

  • EDLP 380, Mixed Methods Research (Spring 2015)

Courses Taught in the Last 5 Years

Bullying and Youth Violence Prevention; Mixed Methods Research; Personal Health


  • S.c.D. in Social and Behavioral Sciences from Harvard School of Public Health
  • M.P.H in Health Promotion from Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health
  • B.A. in Health and Society from University of Pennsylvania

Awards & Honors

  • Center for Rural Studies Research Fellow from Center for Rural Studies, University of Vermont : The Center for Rural Studies works with people and communities to address social, economic, and resource-based challenges through applied research, community outreach, program evaluation, and consulting. The Center for Rural Studies (CRS) appointed an inaugural cohort of 2 year research Fellows in 2013. The goal of the Fellows Program is to facilitate faculty productivity in CRS's mission areas. Bernice Garnett joins the second cohort of CRS research fellows. (2014)
  • Strategic Training Initiative for the Prevention of Eating Disorders, Dissertation Writing Award from Harvard School of Public Health: In September each year, doctoral students at the Harvard School of Public Health may apply for the STRIPED Dissertation Award in Eating Disorders Prevention Research. Doctoral students who have passed their oral exam and whose dissertation research is focused on a topic related to prevention of eating disorders or disordered weight- and shape-control behaviors are eligible to apply. The STRIPED Dissertation Award in Eating Disorders Prevention Research is made possible by the generous support of the Ellen Feldberg Gordon Fund for Eating Disorders Research. (2012)

Professional Associations

  • Academy of Eating Disorders (AED), American Public Health Association (APHA), Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine (SAHM), Society for Prevention Research (SPR)