Postdoctoral Fellow with a focus on structural racial discrimination and AD/RD

Maryland, United States
Salary Not Specified
Jan 14, 2021
Employment Type
Full Time

The grant entitled: Reducing racial disparities in AD/ADRD: Addressing structural discrimination and resilience at the Johns Hopkins University announces an opening for a Postdoctoral Fellow with a focus on structural racial discrimination and AD/RD

The long-term vision our work is to erase racial disparities in Alzheimer’s disease and Alzheimer’s disease related dementias (AD/ADRD) burden. The objectives in this DP1 are to (1) develop a measure of structural discrimination and resilience (focusing specifically on African Americans), (2) disseminate the novel instrument to NIH-funded studies for data collection, and (3) develop tailored interventions with feedback from all stakeholders to reduce racial disparities in AD/ADRD prevalence and burden.


African Americans are more than twice as likely to have AD/ADRD as Whites.1 Not attributed to genes, this is a preventable gap in one of humans’ most feared diseases. Systemic inequality caused by deeply rooted factors like structural racial discrimination shape the distribution of resources and our individual habits like smoking, and diet. AD/ADRD prevention research often focuses on individual habits rather than underlying structural factors. We aim to change the focus of AD/ADRD prevention and experience to address structural factors but there is currently no way to measure structural racial discrimination or the structural resilience that could help individuals, families and communities compensate.

The Johns Hopkins University provides a rich interdisciplinary environment with a wide variety of community partnerships, and offer an abundance of seminars, invited lectures, and opportunities for collaboration with faculty across disciplines and departments.

Under the direction of Sarah L. Szanton, PhD, ANP and Roland J Thorpe, Jr. PhD, the postdoctoral fellow will have ample opportunities to write publications and grants to advance the science of structural racial discrimination. S/he will help lead publications examining the role of both interpersonal “everyday” discrimination (available currently in data sets) and develop concepts and measurement around structural discrimination.

The primary responsibility of the postdoctoral fellow will be to collaborate with investigators and PhD students on this team to carry out an array of activities, including using existing data bases, working on qualitative projects on structural discrimination and resilience, developing strategies to insert new discrimination measures into existing studies. The Postdoctoral Fellow will provide technical assistance and support as needed. S/he will also gain leadership through data management and analysis; preparation of manuscripts, grant proposals, and conference presentations; and collaborating and engaging with interdisciplinary research groups.

The Postdoctoral fellow will have access to exceptional resources to facilitate the conduct of their own research including multiple opportunities to publish and assistance with grant-writing or project planning for the next stage of their research careers. The postdoctoral fellow will receive individualized mentoring and training to develop the skills and competencies needed to become successful independent investigators, advance the health of populations, and to design, implement, and evaluate innovative policy interventions.

The initial appointment will be for one year, with the potential for funding to be extended an additional year. Decisions regarding Fellowship extensions will be based on scholarly productivity, mid-year and year-end progress reports. The position provides salary and benefits consistent with NIH postdoctoral fellows.

A PhD in nursing, gerontology, public health, implementation science, psychology, behavioral sciences or related field is required. Fellowships are open to eligible US citizens and international applicants. Women, racial/ethnic minorities, sexual/gender minorities, and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.

Due Date: March 1, 2021. Decisions and notification regarding selection will be made by April 1, 2021. Start date is negotiable.

The Johns Hopkins University is committed to equal opportunity for its faculty, staff, and students. To that end, the university does not discriminate on the basis of sex, gender, marital status, pregnancy, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, age, disability, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, veteran status or other legally protected characteristic. The university is committed to providing qualified individuals access to all academic and employment programs, benefits and activities on the basis of demonstrated ability, performance and merit without regard to personal factors that are irrelevant to the program involved.

The successful candidate(s) for this position will be subject to a pre-employment background check.

If you are interested in applying for employment with The Johns Hopkins University and require special assistance or accommodation during any part of the pre-employment process, please contact the HR Business Services Office at For TTY users, call via Maryland Relay or dial 711.

The following additional provisions may apply depending on which campus you will work. Your recruiter will advise accordingly.

During the Influenza ("the flu") season, as a condition of employment, The Johns Hopkins Institutions require all employees who provide ongoing services to patients or work in patient care or clinical care areas to have an annual influenza vaccination or possess an approved medical or religious exception. Failure to meet this requirement may result in termination of employment.

The pre-employment physical for positions in clinical areas, laboratories, working with research subjects, or involving community contact requires documentation of immune status against Rubella (German measles), Rubeola (Measles), Mumps, Varicella (chickenpox), Hepatitis B and documentation of having received the Tdap (Tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis) vaccination. This may include documentation of having two (2) MMR vaccines; two (2) Varicella vaccines; or antibody status to these diseases from laboratory testing. Blood tests for immunities to these diseases are ordinarily included in the pre-employment physical exam except for those employees who provide results of blood tests or immunization documentation from their own health care providers. Any vaccinations required for these diseases will be given at no cost in our Occupational Health office.

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