Dr. Guadalupe X. “Suchi” Ayala was appointed as associate director for research at San Diego State University Graduate School of Public Health. She is a professor in the Division of Health Promotion and Behavioral Science, and director of the Institute for Behavioral and Community (IBACH) and SDSU HealthLINK. The latter is an endowment funded by the National Institute of Minority Health and Health Disparities to support SDSU’s infrastructure for the use of technology and big data in population health and health disparities research.
Dr. Ayala noted, “I am excited to serve in this role at SDSU. The GSPH has a strong history for acquiring extramural funding from the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and numerous other local, state, and national organizations. With this funding, GSPH faculty have led innovative research that seeks to improve lives and the conditions in which we live.” GSPH faculty and students are engaged in a wide variety of research, from promoting access to safe drinking water and public parks for exercise, to using mhealth strategies to prevent and control substance abuse, teen pregnancy, and HIV. She looks forward supporting and promoting the success of these faculty and students, and welcomes the opportunity to share experiences and lessons learned with others who share similar roles in other schools of public health.
Dr. Susan M. Kiene was appointed as associate director for academic affairs. Dr. Kiene is a professor of global health in the division of epidemiology and biostatistics. She joined the SDSU faculty in 2015. Dr. Kiene studies methods for improving access to health care in vulnerable populations in developing countries. She focuses primarily on infectious diseases including HIV and Tuberculosis as well the interaction of these diseases with substance use. Her research has been funded by the NIH since 2004. She currently serves on SDSU’s Graduate Council and the Graduate Council Curriculum Committee. Dr. Kiene previously served as the interim co-director for the Doctoral Program in Global Health which is a joint program between SDSU and the University of California San Diego. In her new role as Associate Director for Academic Affairs, Dr. Kiene looks forward to expanding students’ educational opportunities locally, nationally, and internationally.