Laura Kubzansky, MPH '97, promoted to tenure
Please join the HSPH community in warmly congratulating Laura Kubzansky on her promotion to professor of social and behavioral sciences.
Over the course of her career, Dr. Kubzansky’s interests have evolved from the effect of emotions on performance—the subject of her doctoral studies, reflecting her background in music—to the role of stress and emotion in cardiovascular disease and healthy aging. Her ground-breaking research rests at the intersection of epidemiology, psychology, and health, and she has provided some of the strongest evidence to date that stress and emotion contribute to disease development and should be considered viable targets for interventions. Further, she has provided novel approaches to assessing the extent to which stress and other psychological factors can explain social disparities in health. More recently, her work has emphasized the molecular processes that underlie the link between social and emotional factors and health, uniquely bridging experimental and observational research within the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences. In addition, Dr. Kubzansky has conducted innovative work that seeks to understand protective factors that promote resilience and thus reduce the risk of chronic disease. Widely recognized as a leading scholar in this area, she serves as an advisor to organizations like the Centers for Disease Control and the American Heart Association in monitoring and assessing the impact of resilience and positive psychological functioning on physical health. Her ongoing work also examines the role of early childhood in setting up trajectories of risk or resilience and the interplay between social stress and toxic environmental exposures.
After receiving her PhD in social psychology from the University of Michigan in 1995, Dr. Kubzansky came to HSPH to carry out postdoctoral work on the psychosocial determinants of health. During this time, she also earned an MPH in public management and community health. In 1998, she became an instructor of health and social behavior and the associate director of the Harvard Center for Society and Health. Since joining the faculty in 2000, she has distinguished herself not only as an accomplished and innovative researcher, but as an exceptional teacher and mentor. Her talent for teaching and mentoring has been recognized by students, who selected her for the 2010 Roger L. Nichols Excellence in Teaching Award, as well as postdoctoral fellows, who presented her with the 2011 Outstanding Mentor Award.
On behalf of the school and the faculty, I am pleased to congratulate Dr. Kubzansky on her promotion and wish her continued success in her career at HSPH.
Dean for Academic Affairs