Sandra Echeverria, Ph.D., MPH

Promoting Health, Engaging Communities, Changing Lives

Sandra Echeverria, Ph.D., MPH





Department of Public Health Education

School of Health and Human Sciences

University of North Carolina at Greensboro

P.O. Box 26170

Greensboro, NC 27402-6170

(336) 334-5532 (office)

Office Location: 437-F Mary Channing Coleman Building


Education and Training

Ph.D., Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health, Department of Epidemiology

M.P.H., Columbia University, School of Public Health, Sociomedical Sciences,

B.A., Rutgers University, Rutgers College, Major: Latin American Studies/ Pre-Medical Curriculum, with a minor in Archaeology

Curriculum Vitae



I attended Rutgers College, Rutgers University where I began as a Biology major and later switched to Latin American Studies/ History, with a certificate of completion of all requirements for medical school admission (pre-med curriculum) and a minor in Archaeology. As the first person in my family to attend college, I associated being a good student and liking science with attending medical school. It was not until my senior year in college that I discovered public health and I was hooked! I subsequently went on to earn my Masters of Public Health degree from Columbia University, Mailman School of Public Health, where I had the great fortune of having outstanding mentors who gave me the tools to connect scientific thinking and practice with public health advocacy. After completing my M.P.H., I worked for many years in global health providing technical assistance in program evaluation throughout the Latin America and Caribbean region visiting over 15 countries. I eventually returned to Columbia University to complete my Ph.D. in Epidemiology where I specialized in Social Epidemiology and cardiovascular health disparities.

Research Interests

My area of research centers on understanding social inequalities in cardiovascular risk and cardiovascular health behaviors, particularly physical inactivity, diabetes, and smoking. As a social epidemiologist, I use an interdisciplinary lens to understand the complex social processes that produce health inequalities for Latinos and other racially/ethnically diverse groups living in the United States. My epidemiologic work specifically examines how immigrant status, neighborhood contexts, and socioeconomic disadvantage are associated with cardiovascular risk factors. I have an interest in applying varying analytic approaches to disentangle the relative contribution of both structural determinants and cultural (‘acculturation’) explanations in immigrant health generally and Latino health more specifically. Additionally, I have dedicated much of my research career to finding ways to directly alleviate health inequalities through translational, community-engaged research. I have worked with community partners in the design, implementation and evaluation of interventions that reduce cardiovascular risk via increased physical activity adoption. Much of my research interest stems from my own experience growing up as an immigrant child raised in a working-class home and being the first to graduate from college in my family.


Courses Taught

  • HEA 604 Public Health Statistics