Wei: 2020 Distinguished Alumni Award for Research


Chongyi Wei received a DrPH from Pitt Public Health in 2009, graduating with an Outstanding Student Award. He has subsequently held faculty positions at Pitt Public Health and the University of California – San Francisco, and is currently an associate professor in the Department of Health Behavior, Society, and Policy at Rutgers University School of Public Health.

Trained as a behavioral scientist, Wei's primary research focuses on reducing disparities in HIV infections and co-morbidities (e.g., substance use, mental health) among sexual and gender minority populations, particularly in China and other parts of Southeast Asia. In the past decade, his work has included conducting extensive HIV behavioral epidemiology studies, examining acceptability and feasibility of innovative prevention strategies, and developing and evaluating individual- and community-based intervention trials among sexual minority men in China and other parts of Asia. Wei was among the first and few U.S. investigators working in the Asian Region and his research has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health.

Wei has published over 100 articles in well-respected scientific journals. In addition to research, he is committed to mentoring and teaching. He has served as faculty mentor on NIH training grants and mentored over 20 graduate students, visiting scholars, medical students, and post-doctoral fellows. At Rutgers, he is one of the founding faculty members of the nation’s first MPH in LGBTQ Health. 

Wei attributes his research and teaching interests to his time spent at Pitt Public Health. "I entered the doctoral program without an MPH and Pitt Public Health cultivated my deep appreciation for the field of public health, in particular its principle of social justice. I was fortunate enough to have some of the best advisors and mentors, who helped me establish a vision for my research and career and also cared for me on a personal level." 

His favorite part? Seeing research come to fruition. "...[To] become a funded project and then be able to work with a team of colleagues who bring different perspectives and insights to the work. Probably more importantly, I'm doing something meaningful for the community that I belong to." 


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