Academic all-star and peer mentor Noah Zazanis pursues research into LGBT health disparities

Noah Zazanis
B.A., Psychology
Summa Cum Laude
Hometown: Germantown, Maryland
Plans: Researcher, Quiton Lab, UMBC

UMBC has given me amazing opportunities for research that have helped prepare me for graduate school and my career and furthered my development as a student and scholar. The mentorship I’ve experienced at UMBC Shady Grove and on main campus has been life-changing.

As an undergraduate researcher, Noah Zazanis is already making waves through a groundbreaking study of the biophysical factors that affect pain perception. Zazanis has been able to pursue their interest in LGBT health psychology through work in the lab of Raimi Quiton, assistant professor of psychology, focusing on the biopsychosocial influences of pain and pain management, including how social environments and social inequality affect health.

“There is not a lot of research in LGBTQIA+ health disparities,” says Zazanis. “UMBC is impressive with the depth of undergraduate research opportunities, and encouraged me to actually spearhead research projects unique to my interests.”

Zazanis presenting at URCAD 2017. Photo courtesy of Zazanis.

Zazanis’s academic excellence and work in the Quiton lab has already earned them the psychology department’s Distinguished Achievement Award, as well as an academic achievement award from UMBC’s psychology program at the Universities at Shady Grove. They’ve also presented research twice at UMBC’s Undergraduate Research and Achievement Day. Beyond academic and research achievement, and advocacy for health equity, Zazanis also supports fellow students through tutoring in statistics, writing, and research methods.

Zazanis will begin work this summer on a new research project at the Quiton lab focused on pain perception among transgender people, with the hope of improving their health care services. With excitement to move forward in the research, they share, “I have developed strong clinical research skills well-suited for a future in the interdisciplinary field of health sciences.”

Portrait by Marlayna Demond ‘11 for UMBC.