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CDC researcher—and Philly native—joins SBS faculty

After 10 years at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention, Carolyn Parks joins the College of Public Health faculty this fall as an associate professor of instruction in the Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences.

Parks will primarily teach undergraduate public health courses, including program planning and Introduction to Public Health. She hopes to also work on collaborative community-based research projects working on health issues that impact African Americans and various low-income and vulnerable populations. 

“I knew I was ready to return to teaching, and of the universities I explored, Temple seemed to provide the best fit for my teaching interests and expertise,” said Parks, who came to the CDC with almost 20 years of university teaching, research, and practice experience as a community health education specialist. “I also am looking forward to returning to the free and critical thinking, professional creativity and innovation, and progressive ideas and projects that the university offers.”

A specialist in the development, implementation, and evaluation of grassroots health promotion and disease prevention strategies for African-Americans, vulnerable populations, and other groups of color, Parks served on the three major CDC-funded HIV and AIDS interventions for African American women, developing capacity-building training evaluation for more than 350 community-based organizations nationwide. She has also published numerous articles and given presentations on HIV and AIDS in the African-American community and the role of faith communities in HIV prevention. In 2012 Parks completed a four-month assignment in Nairobi, Kenya, working with CDC staff on HIV and AIDS interventions for women and youth.

Parks earned a PhD in health education from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, an MS in health education from Western Illinois University, and a BS in biology from Wheaton College in Illinois.

Coming to Temple holds personal meaning for Parks as well, as she returns to her native city after a 30-year absence. “It’s definitely a homecoming for me,” Parks said. “I'm greatly looking forward to reuniting with family and friends in the City of Brotherly Love!”

Posted:  October 20, 2017