Adedoyin Okanlawon is a PhD student in Peace Studies and Psychology with the Kroc Institute at the University of Notre Dame. She received a B.A. in Psychology from Rochester University in 2015. She also holds a Master’s in Research Psychology from the University of Massachusetts (Dartmouth). Ade’s initial interest began with her experience in Nigeria working to help reconnect youths who were attempting to reintegrate into the community after being recruited by gang members in various areas of Lagos through a church organization in Nigeria. Most recently, Ade has collaborated with Dr. Theresa Betancourt’s team at Boston College utilizing a longitudinal dataset based on war-affected youth from Sierra Leone.
Ade's research interests include understanding how societal structures contribute to violence, and the implications for the biopsychosocial development of war-affected youths and their families. Specifically, she is interested in understanding the psychological effects of Africa's violent and corrupt political systems on the youth and their families. She is also interested in examining the link between political violence and the indoctrination of youth into gangs as a safe haven as well as examining how societal structures such as cultural norms, institutional policies, and practices limit the opportunities, mental health, and wellbeing of young people.
Adedoyin is a Richard and Peggy Notebaert Premier Fellow.