NYU Center for the Study of Asian American Health Pilot Project Program | NYU Langone Health

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Section for Health Equity Research Training NYU Center for the Study of Asian American Health Pilot Project Program

NYU Center for the Study of Asian American Health Pilot Project Program

The NYU Center for the Study of Asian American Health (CSAAH) offers two types of awards in its Pilot Project Program to support postdoctoral fellows, junior faculty, and early-stage investigators across the institution in performing pilot research and generating preliminary findings on health disparities in Asian American populations and other emerging communities.

The Postdoctoral Fellow Award totals up to $ 15,000, for direct costs, and the Junior Faculty and Early Stage Investigator Award totals up to $30,000, for direct costs. We have funded 45 projects to date over the last 6 award cycles.

About the Pilot Project Program

CSAAH’s Investigator Development Core, co-led by Lorna E. Thorpe, PhD, and Jiyuan Hu, PhD, with Stella S. Yi, PhD, MPH, as ID core director for cycles 3 to 5, is based in the Section for Health Equity, a part of the Division of Health and Behavior at NYU Langone’s Department of Population Health. Our program aims to increase the number of junior investigators conducting health disparities research inclusive of Asian Americans, and expand their capacity to improve health equity through rigorous, community-engaged transdisciplinary research.

The CSAAH Pilot Project Program is committed to allocating $150,000 per year to support postdoctoral fellows, junior faculty, and early-career investigators at NYU Grossman School of Medicine for pilot research. Funding is ultimately intended to pave the way for larger-scale research applications and scientific discovery. Our program funding has also generated approximately more than $12 million in annual direct costs of additional awards over the last 5 years, including National Institutes of Health (NIH) Research Career Development Awards, Research Project Grants, Administrative Supplements, and other award types through various sponsors including the American Gastroenterological Association, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and more.

Pilot Project Aims

Through funding pilot projects, our specific aims include the following:

  • to establish and sustain a network of well-trained junior investigators with an emphasis on health disparity and minority communities
  • to provide continuous mentorship and strong technical support to mentees in conducting their pilot projects and enhance their capacity to successfully compete for expanded funding nationally
  • to review and promote research products (manuscripts, proposals, community dissemination materials) to advance CSAAH scientific goals

Focus of Awards

CSAAH is guided by principles focused on achieving systemic change across multiple domains and levels of influence and stimulating action-oriented research to reduce health disparities. We have identified and established seven key strategies for advancing a transdisciplinary population health equity agenda that informs our research approach. We typically fund pilot awards that address one or more of these themes:

  • applying a social determinants of health approach
  • conducting research guided by multisectoral coalitions
  • engaging communities through community-based ethnic coalitions and pan-ethnic advisory groups
  • performing disaggregated data collection to better represent diverse populations
  • building human and social capital to highlight community strengths
  • fostering clinical practice and community linkages and access to care
  • strengthening organizational and community-based infrastructures through capacity-building activities

Additionally, we strive to eliminate health disparities and advance health equity among Asian American populations through the Section for Health Equity’s research tracks focused on cardiovascular health and diabetes, cancer, mental health, healthy aging and Alzheimer’s disease, and gender equity, and the Applied Research and Evaluation Unit. Applicants are encouraged to align their pilot project proposals with one or more of our research tracks. We also encourage applications utilizing elements of community-partnered research, systems science, mixed methods, and implementation science methodologies.

Previous Pilot Project Program Requests for Applications (RFA)

Cycle 6 RFA (2022–23)

Cycle 5 RFA (2021–22)

Sample Scoring Rubric

Awardees and Projects, 2022–23

Byoungjun Kim, PhD
Project title: Racial/ethnic residential segregation and type 2 diabetes mellitus/care among Asians: Role of ethnic neighborhoods

Hayley Belli, PhD, MS, and Rebecca Lassell, PhD
Project title: A green activity prescription program for Chinese Americans living with dementia

Hyungrok Do, PhD
Project title: Fair risk predictions for underrepresented Asian American populations using electronic health records

Madison N. LeCroy, PhD
Project title: Family relationships and dietary intake among Chinese American adolescents

Nicole Anzai, MD
Project title: Characterizing the relationship between vaping, eating disorder symptoms, and perceived discrimination among Asian American youth in outpatient psychiatric care

Sarah Lee, MD, MBA
Project title: Uptake of genetic testing and presence of germline and somatic mutations for Asian subpopulations with gynecologic cancers

Sugy Choi, PhD, MS
Project title: Improving quality of Asian American subgroup race-ethnicity data with a focus on patients with substance use disorder

Yaena Song, EdD
Project title: Designing pediatric oral health education for Chinese-American immigrant families in Brooklyn

Yousra Yusuf, PhD, MPH
Project title: Landscape analysis and participatory system dynamics modeling to explore the state of reproductive health education in American Muslim communities

Awardees and Projects, 2021–22

Natan Vega Potler, MD
Project title: Characterizing resilience, mental health needs, and service utilization among second-generation Chinese and Mexican American adolescents in Brooklyn

Jiyuan Hu, PhD
Project title: Developing a trans-ancestry polygenic risk score for the prediction of coronary artery calcification progression among multiple ethnic groups

Omar El Shahawy, MD, PhD, MPH
Project title: Developing an mHealth ecological momentary approach for comprehensive diabetes management among Chinese American adult smokers with type 2 diabetes

Alicia Chung, EdD, MPH
Project title: Exploring strategies to address social determinants of health needs of Chinese-American families in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, in a COVID-19 Era

Perla Chebli, PhD, MPH
Project title: Participatory concept mapping and implementation developmental evaluation for BRACE-CHW: A breast and cervical cancer community health worker intervention with Chinese and Arab communities in Brooklyn

Lan N. Đoàn PhD, MPH
Project title: Neighborhood environments and COVID-19 among Asian American subgroups in New York City

Andrea Titus, PhD
Project title: Trends and risk factors associated with pediatric asthma among Medicaid-enrolled non-Hispanic Asian American children in New York City

Vanessa Salcedo, MD, MPH
Project title: Examining sugar-sweeten beverage and 100 percent fruit juice consumption in young Latinx and Asian children

Awardees and Projects, 2020–21

Erin Rogers, DrPH, MPH
Project title: Estimating the prevalence of, and preferences for assistance with, comorbid tobacco use and food insecurity among racial and ethnic minority cancer survivors living in New York

Jeannette M. Beasley, PhD, MPH
Project title: Validating a dietary screener adapted for Asian Americans

Vanessa Rodriguez, EdD
Project title: Examining educators’ social emotional learning, competency, and mental health to inform wellness promotion strategies development: Reducing mental health disparities in Asian American educators

Paroma Mitra, MD, and Supriya Misra, ScD
Project title: Identifying structural and cultural influences on the experiences of U.S. South Asian with severe mental illnesses to promote recovery and reintegration

Chen Wang, PhD
Project title: Identifying the role of microbiome in health disparity in obesity by a novel microbial causal mediation analytic tool

Rebecca Anthopolos, DrPH
Project title: Identifying and charactering latent risk groups of cardiometabolic risk factors associated with type 2 diabetes mellitus among Asian Americans

Awardees and Projects, 2019–20

Ben Spoer, PhD, MPH
Project title: Geographic differences in health and social determinants of health among Asian Americans and Asian American subgroups in the 500 largest cities in the United States

Samrachana Adhikari, PhD
Project title: Machine learning to inform family and population-centered approach to mental health programming: Reducing mental health disparities in Asian American children

Pasquale E. Rummo, PhD, MPH
Project title: Online grocery shopping behaviors and attitudes among Asian Americans

Sara K. Chokshi, DrPH
Project title: Engaging patients in the user-centered design of a Chinese language patient portal

Carol Duh-Leong, MD, MPP
Project title: Using a social-behavioral framework to investigate infant feeding health literacy and social capital in immigrant Chinese American caregivers

Fen Wu, PhD
Project title: Ethnic disparities in the presentation and survival of patients with cervical cancer: An analysis using the National Cancer Database

Contact Us

For more information, including questions about future cycle key dates, proposal review criteria, submission requirements, or the full list of funded pilot projects, please contact Rebecca Lee, MPA, program manager, at rebecca.lee3@nyulangone.org.