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Episode #108 Interview with Dr. Karen Mancera-Cuevas, Collaborative Research Scientist



Dr. Karen Mancera-Cuevas on Her Journey in Public Health & Her Advice to Future Public Health Practitioners

In this episode, I am speaking with Dr. Karen Mancera-Cuevas on her experience in public health care as a researcher and practitioner. She talks about her current programs at Northwestern University and how her first job in high school led her to a career in Public Health. Listen to hear her priceless advice for future graduates on ways of obtaining a great position after college.


Public Health Researcher Dedicated to Underserved Populations

Dr. Karen Mancera-Cuevas is the Associate Director of Research Projects for the Lupus Research Group at Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine, Division of Rheumatology. Her professional background includes primarily working in academic centers emphasizing clinical, public health, and community-based participatory research at the University of Illinois at Chicago and Northwestern University. Dr. Mancera-Cuevas has helped develop programs that address chronic disease health disparities in communities of color that specifically targeting women and children at the community-level. Her professional goal is to continue expanding her work in public health research by addressing the unmet needs of communities impacted by social determinants of health.


Dr. Mancera-Cuevas Shares Her Journey into Public Health

When she was a senior in high school, Dr. Mancera-Cuevas interned most summers at an adolescent teen pregnancy program. It was during this time that she was inspired to begin working in community health. Upon her graduation from high school, she enrolled at the University of Maryland in their Community Health Education Program. Since finishing school, Dr. Mancera-Cuevas has held several positions throughout the public health sphere. Many of those positions were obtained through mentoring faculty members in her universities programs. Her most recent work is centered around chronic disease and the intersectionality of health equity topics.


Dr. Mancera-Cuevas shares advice and tips for students of public health:

  • Be passionate and interested in the subspecialty area that your work leads you to

  • Tap into mentorship opportunities throughout your career.

  • The field has a lot of challenges, but is also very rewarding through often intangible experiences.

Her advice to public health graduates:

  • Find mentors and build relationships with them during your internships & mentorships.

  • Attend job fairs & professional conferences.

  • Volunteer or intern. Don’t be afraid to use volunteer opportunities to show off your skills.

Connect with Dr. Karen Mancera-Cuevas


Click here to send her an email.

LinkedIn: Karen Mancera-Cuevas DrPH, MS, MPH, CHES

Twitter: @karenmcuevas


This episode is brought to you by


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