Hello! My name is Sirry Alang (she/her). I am a Health Services Researcher and a Medical Sociologist. I obtained a PhD from the Division of Health Policy & Management at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health. I was also trained at Lehigh University, Bethlehem PA, and at the University of Buea, Cameroon. I am a tenured Associate Professor of Black Communities and the Social Determinants of Health, in the Department of Health and Human Development at the University of Pittsburgh School of Education. Prior to joining Pitt, I was a tenured Associate Professor of Sociology and Health, Medicine and Society at Lehigh University, a founding co-director of the Institute of Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, and chair of the Health Justice Collaborative.
~Activist scholarship because I have to pick a side if I am truly about justice and equity~
My research is about figuring out how to dismantle systems of oppression that lead to poor health outcomes among populations marginalized by structural inequalities.
My research explores the role of social structures and institutions in creating inequities in health status and health outcomes across the globe. I am interested in how racism and other structures and mechanisms of exclusion shape health over the life course.
I also examine and strive to address racism within my field and discipline.
In my research, I apply a range of methodologies including focus groups, ethnography, policy analyses, and quantitative analyses of complex surveys.
I am frequently invited to speak at a variety of events to a variety of audience. In addition to speaking, I train, develop curricula, and consult on issues around antiracism, racial justice, and equity, and on culturally responsive and radically inclusive practices.
Here are some organizations / institutions that I have worked with:
- Office of Minority Health Resource Center
- Hennepin County Ryan White Program
- Lehigh Valley Health Network
- National Council of Faculty Senates
- University of Minnesota Human Rights Lab and the Center for Global Health and Social Responsibility
- Nativity Cathedral, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
- NextGen America
- Bridging the Gaps
- Public Agenda
- Minneapolis Urban League
My work is about addressing the social determinants of health, using health justice as a framework. More precisely, I study the social production of health and disease; how structures and institutions heal and harm us. I am interested in health outcomes such as unmet need for health care, access to care, experiences of care, mental health and mental illnesses, and assessments and outcomes of treatment.
You can see some of my academic publications here.
I work with communities to strengthen partnerships necessary to understand and eliminate health inequities using a community-based participatory action research approach.
I teach at the graduate and undergraduate levels. Courses I have taught include Introduction to Public Health; Social Epidemiology; Racism and Health Inequities; Health Promotion Program Translation and Sustainability; HIV/AIDS and Society; Globalization and Health; Gender and Health, and Statistics for Sociological Inquiry. Teaching is the most exciting part of my job.
I earned my Ph.D. in Health Services Research, Policy and Administration from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health in 2015. I focused on the Sociology of Health, Illness, and Health Care, and also obtained a graduate minor in from the Department of Sociology in the College of Liberal Arts. I have an M.A. in Sociology from Lehigh University and a B.Sc. in Sociology and Anthropology from the University of Buea in Cameroon.