Rebecca Cheezum, MPH, PhD

Assistant Professor, Public Health
Director, Master of Public Health
Office: 3150 Human Health Building
Phone: (248) 364-8681
Fax: (248) 364-8657


Curriculum Vitae

My research explores the way social and structural factors impact health among vulnerable populations, including low-income communities of color, youth of color, immigrants, and those who have experienced chronic homelessness.  I am interested in how marginalized communities can advocate for policy change in order to improve their health.  I use a community-based participatory research approach for much of my research, engaging communities in my research throughout the research process.  My professional background includes community-based youth development and HIV prevention work in Boston, Maine, and the West Indies.

I strongly believe in the importance of doing the things that you love to do.  I am lucky in that I truly love my work, but I also take the time to explore my other interests, including biking, running, cooking, exploring new cities, and learning about different cultures.  I also have an interest in positive psychology and life coaching, and I incorporate these concepts into my teaching and mentorship of students.


Doctorate of Philosophy, 2012
Health Behavior and Health Education
University of Michigan

Master of Public Health, 2003
Social Behavioral Sciences
Boston University

Bachelors of Arts, 1997
Bates College

Cheezum, R. R., Israel, B. A., Coombe, C. M., McGranaghan, R. J., O’Toole, A., Grant, S., Burris, A., Anderson, M.  Building Community Capacity to Advocate for Policy Change:  An Impact Evaluation of the Neighborhoods Working in Partnership Project.  Journal of Community Practice, in press.

Cheezum, R. R., Parker, E. A., Sampson, N., O’Toole, A., Patton, J., Lewis, T. C., Robins, T. G., Keirns, C. C.  (2013) Sleep Disruption of Caregivers of Children with Asthma.  Journal of Asthma and Allergy Educators.  (DOI: 10.1177/2150129713478635)

Sampson, N., Parker, E. A., Cheezum, R. R., O’Toole, A., Patton, J., Lewis, T. C., Robins, T. G., Keirns, C. C. (2013).  Stress and health among caregivers of children with asthma in Detroit.  Family and community health, 36(1), 51-62.

Sampson, N., Parker, E. A., Cheezum, R. R., O’Toole, A., Patton, J., Lewis, T. C., Robins, T. G., Keirns, C. C.  (2013) “I wouldn’t look at it as stress”: Conceptualizations of caregiver stress among low-income families of children with asthma.  Journal of health care for the poor and underserved, 24(1), 275-288.

Israel, B. A., Coombe, C. M., Cheezum, R. R., Schulz, A. J., McGranaghan, R. J., Lichtenstein, R., et al. (2010). Community-based participatory research: A capacity-building approach for policy advocacy aimed at eliminating health disparities. American Journal of Public Health, 100(11), 2094-2102.