Congratulations to Dr. Carmela Alcántara for Receiving Tenure at Columbia University

March 20, 2020 @ 2:20 pm
By Communications Office

An exceptionally productive scholar, Alcántara has developed a research program that advances health equity on behalf of Latinx immigrants and other underserved populations.

The School of Social Work congratulates Associate Professor Carmela Alcántara for receiving tenure at Columbia University.

A licensed clinical psychologist with expertise in public health and behavioral medicine, Alcántara’s multidisciplinary research integrates psychology, public health, social work, and medicine to understand how structural and social factors affect sleep, mental health, and cardiovascular health, particularly in marginalized communities.

“Dr. Alcántara is a remarkably talented scholar and mentor whose research has had an enormous impact in the area of health disparities,” said Dean Melissa Begg. “She has worked with colleagues across Columbia University to explore the link between sleep patterns and physical health and to identify the conditions that prevent underserved populations from achieving good sleep hygiene while also looking for ways to provide the necessary resources and supports to reduce such disparities. In addition to her innovative research program, Dr. Alcántara has played a leadership role in the development of a social justice curriculum at our School and in serving as the chair of our doctoral program. Her presence at CSSW has greatly enhanced our educational and research missions, and we are lucky to have her.”

Alcántara joined the School of Social Work in 2015, after spending three years as a research scientist in the Department of Medicine at the Columbia University Medical Center. She is currently the director of the Sleep, Mind, and Health Research Program at the School of Social Work, as well as a faculty affiliate of the Social Intervention Group and the Columbia Population Research Center.

“Associate Professor Alcántara has established herself as one of the most influential scholars in health disparities research,” said University Professor Nabila El-Bassel, the founding director of the Social Intervention Group and one of Alcántara’s faculty mentors. “Her unique research contributions have made clear on the importance of multidisciplinary approaches. She is a tremendous asset to the school and to the University. It will be wonderful to have her as a tenured colleague.”

Alcántara’s current research projects examine the ecological relationship between sleep, self-regulation, and health behaviors in Latinx adults; barriers and facilitators to Latinx surveillance health data disaggregation; and the use of e-health to expand access to evidence-based psychological interventions for insomnia in racial, ethnic, and immigrant communities.

Alcántara has authored or co-authored more than 50 papers and book chapters. Her work has been supported by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; the National Institute of Mental Health; the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services; the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation; the W.K. Kellogg Foundation; the Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research at Columbia University; and the Office of the Provost at Columbia University.

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