Track in Exposure Sciences and Environmental Epidemiology
In-person | Full-Time | 5 years
About This Track
The Exposure Sciences and Environmental Epidemiology (ESEE) track offers research and training opportunities in key topic areas relevant to environmental and occupational health. These include air, water, the food system, exposures across the life course, metals and synthetic chemicals, environmental microbiology, the built environment, global environmental health, molecular and integrated epidemiology, and the investigation of susceptibility factors and effective interventions. Graduates from the ESEE track work in academic research institutions, health agencies, health departments, public health advocacy organizations, and private industry organizations that are leaders in environmental and occupational health in the United States and around the world.
While the exact course sequence for each student is customized on an individual basis dependent on their background and research interests, coursework generally centers around one of several topic areas as illustrated below. This coursework is designed to achieve in depth and experiential training to complement the core instruction.
Exposure Sciences: Evaluating and preventing or minimizing exposure from airborne, waterborne or foodborne physical, chemical or biological pollutants, and promoting health and safety in occupational and non-occupational environments are major strategies to protect public health. Using principles of chemistry, biology, physics, engineering, epidemiology, risk assessment and mathematics, we develop innovative solutions to environmental contamination problems. We develop techniques to measure contaminants in various media, develop strategies and conduct studies to assess the levels of exposures in populations, evaluate the impact of a hazard, offer solutions on treatment or containment, promote regulations and policies to prevent human or environmental contamination, and perform quality control checks.
Environmental Epidemiology: Understanding the role of the environment in human health is critical to improve health and quality of life in human populations, especially among vulnerable and marginalized groups. Using an epidemiologic approach, we conduct population-based research that incorporates state-of-the art exposure and outcome assessment to evaluate the role of the environment in disease, disability, and other health outcomes and to develop strategies for health promotion and disease prevention and control. We engage with diverse populations nationally and internationally, employ classic and cutting-edge epidemiologic methods, and investigate a broad range of environmental exposures including the natural and built-environment.
Occupational Health: Protecting workers from disease and injury is vital nationally and internationally and is an important component of environmental health. We address work-related health problems and design solutions to control and prevent disease or injury caused by chemical, physical, psychosocial, and biological threats. Our goal is to promote and maintain the health of worker populations, particularly those who are most vulnerable, to ensure healthy and productive working lives. Our research includes occupational exposure assessment, industrial hygiene, occupational nursing, development and validation of sensors and biomarkers, epidemiology, population health management, health promotion, policy analysis, and intervention studies focused on disease prevention.
ESEE Track Faculty
Jessie Buckley, PhD; Environmental epidemiology, environmental exposures & child health
Meghan Davis, PhD, DVM; Environmental microbiology, one health, asthma
Shima Hamidi, PhD; Geospatial data, built environment, housing and transportation & health
Christopher Heaney, PhD, MS; Environmental epidemiology, water and health, community-based research
Kirsten Koehler, PhD, MA; Exposure assessment, aerosols, air quality
Keeve Nachman, PhD, MHS; Risk science, risk assessment, food systems
Roni Neff, PhD, ScM; Food system, agriculture, sustainability, health disparities
Carsten Prasse, PhD; Emerging contaminants, engineering processes, analytical detection methods
Lesliam Quiros-Alcala, PhD; impact of exposure to chemicals, EDCs, PPCPs on disease risks in vulnerable populations
Gurumurthy Ramachandran, PhD, CIH; Exposure assessment, nanoparticles, risk assessment for nanomaterials
Ana Rule, PhD; Air pollution, bioaerosols, metal speciation
Kellogg Schwab, PhD, MSPH; Water, sanitation and hygiene, environmental microbiology, microbial fate and transport
Brian Schwartz, MD, MS; Environmental epidemiology, sustainability, built environment, lead
Genee Smith, PhD, MSPH; Environmental epidemiology, health effects of climate change, infectious diseases
Tuition and Funding
All full-time PhD students will receive the following support for the first five years of the program: full tuition, stipend, individual health insurance, University Health Services clinic fee, vision insurance, and dental insurance.