New College faculty to study health and wellness in communities of color and slavery in the United States



New faculty members at the College of Arts and Sciences will work across disciplines to study health and wellness in communities of color.

Six teachers are part of the Health and Wellness in Communities of Color recruiting group. A cluster hire is a creative approach involving the hiring of diverse faculty in multiple departments who will conduct interdisciplinary research on a broad topic.

In addition, two faculties will focus on issues of slavery in the United States and will work closely with the Faculty of Health and Welfare.

The new faculties are:

  • Malia Blue (Fall 21, Health and Wellness), Department of Exercise and Sport Sciences.
  • Lisa Calvente (fall ’21, health and wellness), communication department.
  • Shannon González (fall 21, health and well-being), department of sociology.
  • Brandi brimmer (Fall ’21, US slavery), Department of African, African-American and Diaspora Studies.
  • Sophie McCoy (Spring 22, Health and Wellness), Department of Biology.
  • Desire Kedagni (summer ’22, health and wellness), department of economics.

Research for an additional psychology and neuroscience faculty member studying health and wellness, and a history faculty member studying slavery in the United States will continue next year.

“We are delighted that these new faculty with diverse talents, backgrounds, research interests and backgrounds are joining our Carolina community, and we look forward to facilitating their ability to work together in all disciplines,” said Dean Terry Rhodes. “We will also connect these new faculty members with other academics across the College and across campus to help create appropriate interdisciplinary synergies. “

Rhodes said that after reviewing thoughtful feedback from the College community and in keeping with the goal of enriching diversity, she and her leadership team determined that this cluster hiring was the right direction to prioritize hiring. for the College.

“These new professors are carrying out innovative, high-impact work that will diversify and improve the College’s research, teaching and public awareness missions,” she added.

Faculty members hired by the group have held informal monthly meetings since August, moderated by Karla Slocum, Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the College. The gatherings will help them get to know each other, discuss their work and form a community. The goal is also to connect and orient new faculty to a range of teaching, research, community and leadership resources particularly relevant to their area of ​​work to ensure support for their career at Carolina.

Learn more about new faculty members:

Blue, an assistant professor of exercise and sport science, earned a bachelor’s degree in exercise and sport science, a master’s degree in exercise physiology and a doctorate. in Human Movement Sciences from UNC-Chapel Hill. His research focuses on the components of cardiometabolic health with particular interest in racial and ethnic minority populations. The Well recently shed light on his work.

Calvente, Assistant Professor of Communication, received a BA from City University of New York at Brooklyn College and an MA and PhD. in Communication Studies from UNC-Chapel Hill. His main areas of research are Black Diaspora and African American Culture, Latinx Culture, Performance Studies, and Media Studies.

Gonzalez, an assistant professor of sociology, received a BA in English from Tougaloo College, an MA in Nonprofit and NGO Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania, and a PhD. in Sociology from the University of Texas at Austin. She studies black feminist theory, criminology, police / police violence, community and urban sociology, as well as race, gender and class.

Brimmer, associate professor of African, African-American, and Diaspora studies, received a bachelor’s degree in history from Spelman College, a master’s degree in African-American studies, and a doctorate. in American History from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her research focuses on the history of slave and free blacks in the southern United States, emancipation, reconstruction, black women’s political thought, and African American marriage and family.

McCoy will join the UNC Biology Department at Florida State University. She received an undergraduate degree in chemistry from Brown University and a doctorate. in Ecology and Evolution from the University of Chicago. She studies community and functional ecology in a changing world.

Kedagni will join the Department of Economics at UNC at Iowa State University. Kedagni obtained undergraduate degrees in economics and statistics from the University of Abomey-Calavi in ​​Benin, a master’s degree in statistics and applied economics from ISSEA, Yaoundé in Cameroon and a master’s degree in economics from the University of Montreal. , with a doctorate. in Economics from Pennsylvania State University. Kedagni’s research interests are in econometrics, causal inference and development economics and also include the economics of labor and the economics of education.


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