The RWJF Health & Society Scholars program ended February 2017. The site will no longer be updated. More »


The final cohort for The University of Michigan completed the Program in August of 2014

The Health & Society Scholars Program at the University of Michigan emphasizes the importance of linking a multi-level array of causal factors in order to understand and improve population health and eliminate the great health divides within our society. By bringing together faculty across multiple disciplines (including  Epidemiology, Sociology, Health Behavior, Medicine, Genetics, History, Public Policy, Social Work, Health Policy, Neurosciences,  Biostatistics, Economics,  Urban Planning, Demography, Education,  and Ecology) the program creates an environment in which independent scholars can gain depth, breadth and a wide set of research opportunities in interdisciplinary approaches to population health.

The program is led by Director  Ana V. Diez Roux, M.D., Ph.D., Professor of Epidemiology and Director, Center for Social Epidemiology and Population Health and Co Directors  James S. House, Ph.D., Professor of Sociology and Public Policy and Research Professor, Institute for Social Research; Jeffrey Morenoff, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Sociology and Research Associate Professor, Population Studies Center, Institute for Social Research and Mark L. Wilson, Sc.D., Professor of Epidemiology and Professor, Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. The Directors and an interdisciplinary Steering Committee have published extensively on the core topics of the Health & Society Scholars Program. A broad range of other faculty members throughout the campus are committed to providing research opportunities and mentoring.

The program is designed to provide a fertile environment in which scholars and their mentors can fashion a highly individualized program of study and research. Scholars will have the opportunity to pursue an active research program and participate in a broad range of activities throughout the University of Michigan campus. Multiple mentors, representing the scholar’s home discipline, area of research involvement, and the interdisciplinary perspective of the program, will work with the scholar to provide a productive two-year experience.

Scholars determine their own research agenda, with the University’s unique resources providing extensive opportunities for scholars to gain experience in data collection or secondary data analysis. Program faculty are leaders of many exciting projects, including the Health and Retirement Study, the Americans’ Changing Lives Study, The Alameda County Study, the National Survey of African-American Mental Health, the Monitoring the Future Study, the Chicago Community Study of Adult Health, the MESA Neighborhood Study, the Panel Study of Income Dynamics, and many other population based studies throughout the United States as well as internationally. The University also has special centers that allow analyses of confidential data from the census and other sources.

We are committed as researchers and teachers to meeting the national need for increased training of future leaders and scholars who understand the links between society and health. We have exceptional faculty with considerable expertise in population health and related areas, a large and varied set of institutional and community resources, and an internationally recognized record of commitment to interdisciplinary training