Program to Increase Diversity in Behavioral Medicine & Sleep Disorders Research Summer Institute | NYU Langone Health

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Center for Healthful Behavior Change Education & Training Program to Increase Diversity in Behavioral Medicine & Sleep Disorders Research Summer Institute

Program to Increase Diversity in Behavioral Medicine & Sleep Disorders Research Summer Institute

The Program to Increase Diversity in Behavioral Medicine and Sleep Disorders Research (PRIDE) Summer Institute in NYU Langone’s Center for Healthful Behavior Change empowers qualified minority scientists to launch careers in the field of behavioral medicine and sleep disorders research. Our Summer Institute offers intensive, multidisciplinary research training and mentorship to junior-level faculty members and other scientists who come from underrepresented racial and ethnic minority groups or who have a disability. After graduating from the program, many trainees continue on to tenure-track academic positions or to leadership roles in nonprofits and healthcare companies.

As a trainee during this two-week summer program, you develop the skills needed to apply for independent research grants in behavioral medicine and sleep disorders. You receive intensive, individualized training in the fundamentals of health disparities research, grant writing, and peer review. This includes guidance by staff at the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH’s) National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute and close mentorship by recognized faculty experts in cardiovascular health, behavioral medicine, and sleep disorders.

Trainee Backgrounds

Our trainees come to us from a variety of backgrounds and with diverse experiences and research interests. Many of our trainees are assistant professors, but we have also had research associates and medical directors enroll in the program. The following is a sampling of the research interests of some of our past trainees:

  • behavioral, sleep and cardiovascular, and metabolic conditions in patients with epilepsy and cerebral palsy
  • chronic pain and associated symptoms, such as sleep disturbances
  • effects of participation in physical activity on sleep patterns in children and the effects of sleep on weight status in pediatric populations
  • health effects of disturbances to sleep and circadian rhythms caused by chronic light, noise, and environmental pollutants
  • potential effects of sleep quality in children and possible mechanisms in inflammation
  • relation of sleep characteristics, quality, and disorders to health in underrepresented minority populations, particularly African Americans
  • sleep hygiene in community weight loss and weight management interventions
  • social determinants of suboptimal diet and sleep health as modifiable contributors to racial and ethnic and socioeconomic chronic disease disparities


Our Summer Institute provides funding to support travel and accommodations for up to 12 trainees each summer. The program is open to junior-level faculty members or scientists who are U.S. citizens or permanent U.S. residents and of a race or ethnicity that is underrepresented in the biomedical sciences, or who have a disability. Postdocs are not eligible for this program.

Applications are now closed. Please check back for information about the next application period.

Faculty and Staff

Olugbenga G. Ogedegbe, MD, MPH
Director, Program to Increase Diversity in Behavioral Medicine and Sleep Disorders Research
Director, Institute for Excellence in Health Equity
The Dr. Adolf and Margaret Berger Professor of Medicine and Population Health
Research interests: health disparities and minority health; cardiovascular risk reduction in minority and low-income populations; dissemination and implementation of evidence-based behavioral interventions in management of chronic disease

David Rapoport, MD
Professor of Medicine, Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Research interests: physiology of obstructive sleep apnea

Indu Ayappa, PhD
Associate Professor of Medicine, Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
Research interests: developing new techniques for the diagnosis and treatment of sleep apnea; physiology of the upper airway; the relationship between sleep-disordered breathing and daytime function

Ferdinand Zizi, MBA
Program Manager for Research and Training Initiatives

Mr. Zizi oversees the Summer Institute program requirements, including implementation of the curriculum and mentoring program and supervising the training team. He engages key members of the community to ensure training programs are acceptable and sustainable and works with local and national institutions to promote the program and identify qualified junior scholars. Along with the directors, he identifies speakers and mentors for the program. Contact Mr. Zizi at

Presenters and Mentors

Faculty experts in cardiovascular health, behavioral medicine, and sleep disorders give presentations and closely mentor PRIDE trainees.

Collins O. Airhihenbuwa, PhD, MPH

Former Dean, Saint Louis University College for Public Health and Social Justice
Research interests: advancing research on culture, identity, and health

John Allegrante, PhD

Professor of Health Education, Teachers College, Columbia University
Research interests: health behavior and health outcomes in chronic disease

Carla Boutin-Foster, MD

Associate Dean, Office of Diversity Education, SUNY Downstate Medical Center
Research interests: root causes of health disparities in cardiovascular disease to guide community-based interventions

Scott Braithwaite, MD, MSc

Professor, Departments of Population Health and Medicine
Research interests: decision analytic modeling; evidence synthesis; comparative effectiveness research; cost-effectiveness analysis; informing public policy with mathematical models in multiple clinical domains

Learn more about Dr. Braithwaite.

Kenneth Bridges, MD

Program Evaluator, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Research interests: increasing the number of faculty from minority and historically disadvantaged backgrounds who can achieve senior rank in academic medicine

Orfeu M. Buxton, PhD

Associate Professor of Biobehavioral Health, Pennsylvania State University
Associate Neuroscientist, Division of Sleep and Circadian Disorders, Departments of Medicine and Neurology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital
Research interests: causes of chronic sleep deficiency in the workplace, home, and society; health consequences of chronic sleep deficiency, especially adverse cardiometabolic outcomes and the physiologic and social mechanisms from which they arise; sleep loss, aging, and insomnia; health disparities

Karina W. Davidson, PhD

Professor of Behavioral Medicine, Columbia University Irving Medical Center
Research interests: behavioral and psychological interventions for patients with cardiovascular disease; anger management and depression treatment in both hypertensive and post–myocardial infarction patients; improving compliance with medical recommendations in cardiovascular disease patients

Kevin A. Fiscella, MD, MPH

Professor of Family Medicine and Community and Preventive Medicine, University of Rochester Medical Center
Research interests: pragmatic strategies to improve equity within primary care related to cancer, cardiovascular disease prevention, and HIV

Robert Fullilove, EdD

Professor of Sociomedical Sciences, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health
Research interests: minority health in urban settings, such as substance abuse and addiction, and the prevention of sexually transmitted infections and HIV

James R. Gavin III, MD, PhD

External Member of the Advisory Committee
Clinical Professor of Medicine, Emory University School of Medicine
Clinical Professor of Medicine, Indiana University School of Medicine
Chief Medical Officer and Chief Executive Officer, Healing Our Village
Research interests: diabetes control; childhood obesity–related illnesses; policy and environmental influences that contribute to childhood obesity

Michael Grandner, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Arizona College of Medicine
Research interests: relation between sleep and sleep-related behaviors to longevity, mental health, obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease; home-based sleep assessments, polysomnography, and actigraphy; neurobehavioral performance and neuropsychological functioning; metabolic measurements, such as insulin resistance; dietary preferences, psychological health, and quality-of-life assessments

Lauren Hale, PhD

Professor of Family, Population, and Preventive Medicine, Stony Brook Medicine
Research interests: social determinants of sleep; health disparities; demography; maternal and child health; women’s health; health in retirement

Jared B. Jobe, PhD

Private Consultant and Former Research Scientist, National Cancer Institute
Research interests: clinical trials; mentoring; research funding for biomedical sciences

Kenneth L. Lichstein, PhD

Professor of Psychology, University of Alabama
Research interests: normal and disturbed sleep in different ethnic groups, including African Americans, Hispanics, and Asians

Samy McFarlane, MD, MPH, MBA

Professor of Medicine, Emergency Medicine, and Radiology, SUNY Downstate Medical Center
Research interests: diabetes; cardiovascular diseases; health disparities

Thomas A. Mellman, MD

Professor of Psychiatry, Howard University College of Medicine
Research interests: role of sleep in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the early aftermath of trauma; the psychobiology and treatment of PTSD; evidence-based practices in psychopharmacology; the role of stress in health disparities

Keith J. Micoli, PhD

Associate Dean for Postdoctoral Affairs
Research interests: postdoctoral training, including ethics, grant writing, lab management, and communication skills; career development programs for graduate students

Learn more about Dr. Micoli.

Vanessa Northington Gamble, MD, PhD

University Professor of Medical Humanities and Professor of American Studies, George Washington University
Research interests: medical history; Tuskegee Syphilis Study; African American healthcare

Kolawole S. Okuyemi, MD, MPH

Professor of Family and Preventive Medicine, University of Utah Health
Research interests: improving the health of racial and ethnic minorities and other socioeconomically disadvantaged individuals; addressing health disparities and equity; sociocultural and behavioral risk factors affecting health outcomes; professional development and mentoring

Sairam Parthasarathy, MD

Professor of Medicine, University of Arizona College of Medicine, Tucson
Research interests: mechanistic underpinnings of inflammation and sleep in critically ill patients receiving mechanical ventilation and in community-based populations; health services research with an emphasis on implementation science; promoting adherence to therapy in sleep and critical care medicine

Susan Redline, MD, MPH

The Peter C. Farrell Professor of Sleep Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Research interests: contribution of genetic, social, and environmental risk factors to sleep disorders; influences of sleep on health outcomes in children and adults; role of sleep interventions in improving outcomes

Katherine Seelman, PhD

Professor of Rehabilitation Science and Technology, University of Pittsburgh School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences
Research interests: science and technology research and development trends to enhance independence in people with disabilities and older adults; science, technology, and public policy; international rehabilitation

Scott E. Sherman, MD, MPH

Professor, Departments of Population Health, Medicine, and Psychiatry
Research interests: smoking cessation; alcohol misuse; health promotion; health services research; implementation research

Learn more about Dr. Sherman.

Bonnie J. Spring, PhD

Chief of Behavioral Medicine, Department of Preventive Medicine, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Research interests: behavioral risk factors such as obesity, poor-quality diet, physical inactivity, and tobacco use; developing technologies to support self-regulation and healthy behavior change; online learning tools to support skill mastery in evidence-based practice and team science

Lynn Marie Trotti, MD, MSc

Assistant Professor of Neurology, Emory University
Research interests: disorders of excessive daytime sleepiness; evaluating sleepiness and sleep inertia in patients with idiopathic hypersomnia and narcolepsy; clinical care and research evaluation of patients with idiopathic hypersomnia; use of clarithromycin in idiopathic hypersomnia

Andrea B. Troxel, ScD

Professor, Department of Population Health
Research interests: biostatistics; epidemiology; statistical methods; oncology; behavioral economics; clinical trials; longitudinal data; missing data

Learn more about Dr. Troxel.

Phyllis C. Zee, MD, PhD

Chief of Sleep Medicine, Department of Neurology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Research interests: understanding mechanisms that link alterations in sleep, circadian rhythms, and sleep disorders with neurological and cardiometabolic disorders; development of treatments for sleep and circadian-based disturbances in clinical populations

Contact Us

For inquiries, contact Mr. Zizi, program manager for research and training initiatives, at or 646-501-9803. Our fax number is 212-263-4201.