The College of Health and Human Services is pleased to announce that Dr. Carolyn Drews-Botsch has joined the College as a professor and chair of the Department of Global and Community Health, effective August 24. Prior to coming to Mason, Drews-Botsch was a tenured professor at the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University where her administrative responsibilities included terms as vice chair of the Department of Epidemiology and associate dean in the Laney School of Graduate Studies.
Drews-Botsch’s body of research has focused on the epidemiology of pediatric conditions and the factors, particularly in the perinatal period, that contribute to their etiology. Specifically, Drews-Botsch’s research seeks to carefully apply modern epidemiologic methods to understand the causes and of these conditions. Her research program has included work in a variety of related fields including congenital cataracts, fetal growth restriction – particularly in relationship to placental development, intellectual disabilities and autism spectrum disorders.
Among her research discoveries are findings on the role of socioeconomic status with severe intellectual disabilities when there are no other underlying biological factors that impact cognitive development, the impact of vision impairment on children’s quality of life, and understanding and minimizing bias in epidemiologic studies of perinatal outcomes.
As Chair, Drews-Botsch will oversee the implementation of the newly approved PhD in Public Health and she will play an integral role in our ongoing transition to becoming an accredited college of public health. Drews-Botsch is involved in several active grants, including: The Infant Aphakia Study – Clinical Centers Grant for which she is the PI.
By matter of background, Drews-Botsch earned her PhD and MPH from University of California, Los Angeles. She received her BA University of California, San Diego.
The College is thankful to Dr. Larry Cheskin who was asked to serve as the interim chair of GCH shortly after his arrival in the College, while simultaneously chairing the Department of Nutrition and Food Studies and overseeing the Health Starts Here cohort study.