Welcome to the Division of Epidemiology

The Epidemiology is a multifaceted division of the Institute for Health and Equity at the Medical College of Wisconsin. Created in 2011, there are now four faculty members, two fellows and seven staff members with primary appointments in the Division. Members of the Division engage in research and education activities which includes collaborations with various departments within the Medical College of Wisconsin. Read more about the Division of Epidemiology.


What's New?

Dr. Matthew Dellinger is a 2017 recipient of the Community of Innovators Award

In recognition of his outstanding leadership as a community academic partner and commitment to improving Native American Health.

Dr. Laura Cassidy was chosen as a 2017-2018 ELAM Fellow

The Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) program prepares senior women faculty for leadership at academic health centers. Dr. Cassidy is the third MCW ELAM Fellow from MCW to hold the Doctor of Philosophy degree.

Dr. Cassidy is an experienced epidemiologist and population science researcher.  She joined MCW in 2006 as Associate Professor of Surgery, leading the pediatric research team. In 2007, she received a secondary appointment in the Institute for Health and Society and became Assistant Director of Outcomes at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin.  In November 2011, Dr. Cassidy was named Director of the PhD Program in Public and Community Health.  Within a five-year period, she has recruited faculty to develop six new courses, redesigned the dissertation-qualifying exam and the dissertation format, and implemented a part-time program for working professionals.  Also in 2011, Dr. Cassidy established a Division of Epidemiology within the Institute for Health and Equity. Dr. Cassidy has worked with multiple groups across MCW and at other institutions and industries, and is focused on increasing diversity within the PhD program in Public and Community Health by recruiting students with diverse backgrounds and experiences – with an emphasis on underrepresented minorities and students from disadvantaged backgrounds. 

ELAM is a core program of the Institute for Women’s Health and Leadership at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia.  The one-year curriculum combines traditional MBA training – such as finance and organizational theory – which is oriented toward the academic health center environment.  It also incorporates activities that enhance personal and professional development around leadership, career advancement, communication, and the use of information and learning technologies.

Dr. Kirsten Beyer was awarded an R01 from the NCI titled Racism, Residential Racial Segregation, and Breast Cancer Survival Disparities among Black, Hispanic and non-Hispanic White Women.

Racial and ethnic disparities in breast cancer survival are significant and persistent, and the size of these disparities varies geographically across the United States. Racism and racial residential segregation are widely considered to contribute to health disparities, and may partially explain geographical variation in the size of breast cancer survival disparities. Dr. Beyer proposes to undertake a national study of segregation and breast cancer survival among Black, Hispanic, and non-Hispanic women, by constructing and comparing segregation measures, determining whether segregation is associated with survival and via which pathways, and exploring the ways in which Black and Hispanic breast cancer survivors in a highly segregated metropolitan area navigate cancer survivorship in the context of segregation.

Dr. Beyer is a health geographer interested in human-environment interaction as it relates to public health. Her work includes disease mapping, socio-spatial epidemiology, and mixed methods approaches that aim to identify spatial patterns of disease and understand the human-environment processes that create them. Her work is informed by the objectives of translational research, emphasizing the important role for community engagement in a research program that seeks to move scientific knowledge into improvements in population health. In addition, she recognizes the importance of context in shaping individual health outcomes, and the interconnected influence of socio-demographic characteristics and geographical setting in shaping risk. This dual focus on the influence of place and the role for community engagement is designed to improve the targeting of prevention/intervention programming and policy changes that seek to improve population health.

Open Positions:
The Division of Epidemiology has an open Postdoctoral Fellow Position. The Beyer research group focuses on: a) Identifying spatial patterns of health behaviors and outcomes, with a focus on health disparities; b) Examining relationships between environments and human health behaviors and outcomes using both quantitative and qualitative methods; and c) Intervening to improve health and reduce disparities. Current foci are a) cancer disparities, b) institutional racism and racial segregation, c) health promoting environmental features (e.g. greenspace), d) interventions to increase time spent outdoors in natural environments to improve physical and mental health, and e) global health. We emphasize the importance of community engagement and participation in research, and work is very often accomplished in partnership with community organization.

We welcome applications from talented and committed candidates with a recent PhD in Geography, Statistics, Biostatistics, Epidemiology, or related fields. Interested candidates should submit a CV, a brief statement of research interests in a cover letter, and three references.

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