Where are they now?

Roland J. Thorpe, Jr., PhD

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Roland J. Thorpe, Jr., PhD

Roland J. Thorpe, Jr., PhD is an Associate Scientist in the Department of Health Policy and Management at The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Core Faculty of the Hopkins Center for Health Disparities Solutions.  Dr. Thorpe is a gerontologist and epidemiologist whose research agenda focuses on the association of race, socioeconomic status, and segregation with health and functional outcomes among middle- to old–age adults.

Roland earned a PhD in veterinary pathobiology, with a concentration in epidemiology and a minor in gerontology, in 2004. While here at Purdue, Thorpe was a leader among the gerontology students.  We asked a few questions about his graduate studies at Purdue.

What do you remember best about your time in the Gerontology Program?

I remember the one-on-one interaction I had with the faculty and their willingness to work with the students.

Who were your mentors?

Regina Kreisle, Kenneth Ferraro, George McCabe, Larry Glickman

How did you get interested in gerontology?

I was introduced to gerontology while working as a research assistant in Ken Ferraro’s lab. After learning about gerontology I decided to join the Gerontology Program.  Because my dissertation already focused on older adults joining the program was very easy.  In fact, joining the Gerontology Program was one of the best academic decisions I made.

What research experiences did you have at Purdue that helped form your current agenda?

All of the research experiences that I had at Purdue helped form my current research agenda.  Working with Ken Ferraro helped me begin to understand the complexities of race differences across the life course. This information along with the statistical methods I learned during my graduate career has provided me with the fundamental skills necessary for my current position.

Anything else you would like to add?

I am very thankful to all the people in the gerontology program and at Purdue who have assisted me.  I will do everything possible to make them proud.