Skip to content

Recruiting Doctoral Student in Sociology at the University of Utah (Fall 2024)

We are seeking to recruit one doctoral student in sociology to work on a collaborative NIH NIA R01 research grant entitled: Area-level Socio-economic Conditions and Individual-level Health and Mortality: Exploring Place-Based Mechanisms and Individual-level Psychosocial Processes.  The student will work under the direction of Dr. Sara Grineski in Sociology at the University of Utah, alongside a research team that includes Dr. David Curtis, Dr. Dennis Wei and Dr. Yue Zhang (all at University of Utah), Dr. Ming Wen at Hong King University, and other RAs and post-docs at both institutions. They will also be an affiliate with the Center for Natural and Technological Hazards at the University of Utah.

The selected student will gain quantitative data analysis skills as well as content knowledge in place-effects on health, health disparities, and environmental correlates of health. They will have the opportunity to coauthor journal articles and conference presentations with the team, as well as develop and complete an individual project to meet graduation requirements (e.g., dissertation).

The goal of the project is to systematically document how place-based factors (including air pollution, extreme summer heat, greenspace, and built environment) drive midlife health and mortality disparities and provide valuable insights into the complex and dynamic relationships within systems of people and places. This holistic research effort will produce novel evidence to support the development of effective place-based interventions.


The ideal applicant will be curious; motivated; team-oriented; passionate about health equity and environmental justice; eager to learn about contextual effects on health; and interested in using quantitative and spatial methods to analyze data. Prior quantitative research experience is preferred.


Students admitted to the sociology Ph.D. program are typically offered departmental funding in the form of stipends, tuition waivers, and subsidized health insurance in exchange for their service as research assistants and/or teaching assistants. Doctoral students are eligible to receive up to 5 years of funding during fall and spring semesters (limited to 4 years for those who have completed a previous graduate degree), assuming they make satisfactory progress in their academic requirements each year, as well as perform the expected duties and obligations of their assigned job.

How to apply:

First, contact Sara Grineski ( via e-mail by no later than December 1, 2023, to express interest in working on this project as a research assistant. You will then apply for admission to the Sociology PhD program after interacting with Dr. Grineski. The deadline for applying to the PhD program in Sociology is December 15, 2023, and the application can be found here. This program accepts students with Bachelor’s or Master’s degrees. Please indicate your interest in this project in your Statement of Purpose and send Dr. Grineski an e-mail once you have submitted your application.

If you have questions:  

Contact Sara Grineski:

Share this article:


Last Updated: 12/5/23