Jessica P Cerdena, PhD
Research & Publications
With insights from biological and sociocultural anthropology, Jes studies the intersection of adversity and health. Her dissertation research centered the experiences of women who migrated from Latin America to build lives for themselves and their children in southern Connecticut. This research will be published as a book by the University of California Press entitled Pressing Onward: The Imperative Resilience of Latina Migrant Mothers in May 2023. In the book, Jes describes how migrant mothers enact "imperative resilience," or cognitive and social strategies that enable women to press onward, or seguir adelante, despite traumatic histories and ongoing oppression. She emphasizes the need for more supportive policy environments to help migrant mothers to live more fully.
Jes has enjoyed funding support from the National Science Foundation, the Wenner-Gren Foundation, and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Recently, Jes received recognition through the Pisacano Leadership Program in Family Medicine, the P.E.O. Scholars Award, and the American Academy of Family Physicians Foundation Emerging Leaders Program.
Jes enrolled in the MD/PhD program in 2014 after graduating magna cum laude from Washington University in St. Louis with an A.B. in International Studies and Spanish. She plans to apply her training as a family physician-anthropologist and health policy advocate.
Education & Training
- PhDYale University, Anthropology (2021)
- MPhilYale University, Anthropology (2018)
Honors & Recognition
|P.E.O. Scholar Award||P.E.O. International||2022|
|American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) Foundation Emerging Leader||American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) Foundation Emerging Leader||2022|
|Edward A. Bouchet National Graduate Honor Society Member||Edward A. Bouchet National Graduate Honor Society||2022|
|Society for Medical Anthropology Charles Hughes Graduate Student Paper Prize||American Anthropological Association||2022|
|Pisacano Scholar||Pisacano Leadership Foundation||2022|
|Sam Dubal Memorial Award for Anti-Colonialism and Racial Justice in Anthropology||American Anthropological Association||2022|
|Health Policy Research Scholars Outstanding Policy Memo||Robert Wood Johnson Foundation||2018|
|Marguerite-Rush Lerner Creative Writing Award||Program for the Humanities in Medicine||2015|
|Victor H. Farwell Student Leadership Award||Washington University in St. Louis||2014|