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Faculty Mentor(s): Heather Farmer, Ph.D.
Hours/Week: 5-7

The study focuses on how day-to-day exposure to discrimination influences racial disparities in blood pressure over the life course. Discrimination is major a source of stress disproportionately affecting Black adults in the United States and is hypothesized to be a key mechanism contributing to racial disparities in BP. This project will use nationally-representative data from the Health and Retirement Study to understand the relationship between discrimination and BP. The overall objectives of this project are to examine the age-related associations between discrimination and BP among White and Black U.S. adults; and to understand the factors associated with trajectories of discrimination and BP.


The research assistant will assist in the preparation for and achievement of research goals which may include the following and/or other duties specific to the objectives of the project:

  • Meet weekly with faculty supervisor on a regular basis to maintain ongoing communication regarding the RA’s performance
  • Conduct literature searches and maintain a database of relevant literature
  • Prepare data for analysis (e.g., coding)
  • Assist with preparation of abstract, manuscript, and national conference presentations

Required Skills

This is an ideal position for an undergraduate student looking to learn more about research, gain experience in a research lab, and/or has plans to attend graduate/medical/professional school. Training will be provided, but students should be able to learn and work independently. The desired qualifications in a RA include:

  • Familiarity with Mendeley or other reference management software highly desired
  • Detail-oriented
  • Conscientious
  • Time management skills
  • Organizational skills
  • Interpersonal and written communication skills