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Student & Alumni Achievements

Student & Alumni Achievements

Arizona: ASPPH Fellowship & CPH Alum Receives the Hispanic Alumni Outstanding Graduate Student Award

Dr. Omar A. Contreras at the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health has been recognized with the 2019 University of Arizona Hispanic Alumni Club (UAHA) Outstanding Graduate Student Award. The UAHA recognizes an outstanding graduating senior and an outstanding graduate/professional student each year, who have demonstrated academic excellence, leadership and dedicated community service, with an interest and commitment to the Latinx community.

Dr. Contreras has dedicated his career as a public health practitioner in advancing the health of the public, with a focus on reducing racial/ethnic disparities in communities of the Southwest and the U.S.-Mexico Border. Dr. Contreras successfully defended his dissertation this past April where he examined the legislative decision-making process for evidence-based diabetes prevention policies in Arizona. “Observing the health challenges my family endured, where health care as a human right was not an option, catalyzed my passion for advancing the public health of my community through a policy lens.”

Dr. Contreras gives much gratitude to his mentor, dissertation chair and award nominator; professor and associate dean, Dr. Cecilia Rosales. As his nominator, “I am fortunate to have witnessed Omar’s evolution and passion for public health over the course of 12 years. Omar has demonstrated selflessness, superb leadership roles, and dedication to his community and roots.” Dr. Contreras will be presented with the award at the Guerrero Student Center Graduation Convocation on May 8, 2019.