International Health Researcher Joins HBHE Faculty

May 04, 2005
After a lengthy search, Suzanne Maman will be joining HBHE this fall as a tenure-track assistant professor. Suzanne earned her MHS (1995) and PhD (2000) from the Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health, where she is currently an assistant professor in their Department of International Health. A social and behavioral scientist, Suzanne’s research interests include HIV prevention (especially in the area of HIV counseling and testing), gender-based violence mitigation, and international research ethics.HBHE professor Alan Steckler, who chaired the committee that is bringing Suzanne to the department, talked briefly about some of the many strengths she will bring. “We have needed someone with expertise in international health for quite some time. Many of our students come to the department with backgrounds and experiences in international health, and they want to deepen their understanding of this area. Even though the HBHE curriculum offers skills and knowledge that are ‘portable’ to virtually any setting, many international health issues present their own challenges and need to be studied and addressed on their own terms. With her extensive research and teaching background in these areas, Suzanne will be a great boon to our students.”

Professor and chair Jo Anne Earp seconded this opinion. “Suzanne is very impressive. Even at this early point in her career, she has made a name for herself as an international health researcher. Specifically, based on work she carried out in Tanzania as part of her dissertation, she was able to show that HIV-positive women are much more likely to have experienced a history of violence than HIV-negative women. Researchers the world over immediately recognized the significance of this finding: it got published in AJPH; the WHO asked Suzanne to develop a policy document outlining the relationship between HIV serostatus disclosure and gender-based violence; and her work was cited in the closing session of the 2000 International AIDS Conference as a breakthrough study on HIV and violence among HIV-infected women. What is more, Suzanne is building on this early work in exciting ways. Right now, for example, she is conducting a series of studies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on the intersections of HIV and gender-based violence.”

Suzanne is also a seasoned classroom instructor and mentor and promises to add much to the department’s teaching program. At Johns Hopkins, she regularly teaches an International Research Ethics Fellows seminar as well as a required course in formative research for behavioral and community interventions. “With her thoughtfulness, the exciting nature of her work, and what I am sure will be her compelling teaching style, I have no doubt that students and colleagues will soon be clamoring at Suzanne’s door for an opportunity to work with her,” said Jo Anne.

Suzanne expressed equal enthusiasm about joining the HBHE faculty. “I look forward to working with such an impressive group of HBHE faculty members and such a dynamic student body. As someone working in international health, this is an exciting time to be coming to UNC. The development of the global health curriculum and the growing number of international research projects indicates that there is a commitment to bringing a stronger global health focus to campus. The emphasis placed on the quality of the teaching and mentoring in HBHE was a major draw for me as well. I am excited to work with students in HBHE who have interests in pursuing careers in international health. The warmth and support that I have already received from faculty and students at UNC is a very good sign.”

For further information please contact Catherine Vorick either by phone at 919-966-3918 or by email at