June 7, 2023
The Office of Research, Innovation and Global Solutions at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health has announced the awardees of a Schoolwide pilot program that will explore the role of place (geography) in health outcomes across North Carolina.
The concept of “place” comprises social and health behaviors; work and personal residences over time; health policy; the natural and built environments; and more. The goal of the grant program is to assist researchers in developing pilot data that will lead to future external funding.
“Where a person lives can greatly affect health, both at the individual and community level,” said Alexia Kelley, PhD, assistant dean for research at the Gillings School. “This timely topic is of interest to researchers across all the departments at the School, so we are excited to fund six novel projects that will catalyze new research and build collaborations.”
The six projects that will receive funding support are:
Developing and testing a novel spatial model of drinking water exposure to PFAS in NC
The principal investigator is Anne Starling, PhD, assistant professor of epidemiology. The co-investigators are Kun Lu, PhD, associate professor of environmental sciences and engineering; and Emily Ciccone, MD, assistant professor with the UNC School of Medicine.
Identifying NC communities at risk for climate change stressors and socioeconomic/disease vulnerabilities
The principal investigator is Julia Rager, PhD, assistant professor of environmental sciences and engineering. The co-investigator is Lauren Eaves, PhD, IBCLC, research scientist with the Institute for Environmental Health Solutions.
Understanding place-based structural racism for equitable birth outcomes in NC
The principal investigators are Chantel Martin, PhD, assistant professor of epidemiology; and Arrianna Planey, PhD, assistant professor of health policy and management. The co-investigator is Rebekah Israel Cross, PhD, Carolina postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Health Behavior and the Department of Maternal and Child Health; the collaborator is Tom Luben, PhD, with the Environmental Protection Agency.
Building infrastructure to investigate community concerns about the disparate impacts of extreme weather-related disasters on health care access in NC
The principal investigator is Jenny Lund, PhD, associate professor of epidemiology. The co-investigators are Chris Baggett PhD, assistant professor of epidemiology; John Wallace, PhD, senior data adviser with the North Carolina Institute for Public Health; Arrianna Planey, PhD, assistant professor of health policy and management; Eboneé Butler, PhD, assistant professor of epidemiology; and Paul Delamater, PhD, assistant professor with the UNC Department of Geography; the community partner is Hetal Patel, partnership manager with MDC’s Rural Forward program.
This award is co-funded by the Center for Environmental Health and Susceptibility.
Mapping chronic disease risk of the NC retail environment
The principal investigator is Shelley Golden, PhD, associate professor of health behavior. The co-investigators are Melissa Cox, PhD, assistant professor of health behavior; Marissa Hall, PhD, assistant professor of health behavior; and Paul Delamater, PhD, assistant professor with the UNC Department of Geography.
Application of wastewater-based epidemiology to improve precision health mapping of enteric illness in NC
The principal investigator is Joe Brown, PhD, PE, associate professor of environmental sciences and engineering.
Contact the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health communications team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
March 4, 2024 James Swenberg, DVM, DACVP, PhD, Kenan Distinguished Professor at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health in the Department of Environmental Sciences and Engineering, died October 5, 2023. There will be a Scientific Symposium to honor him and his work on March 22 from 3–5 p.m. in 133 Rosenau Hall at the Gillings School.