Dr. Cassandra (Cassie) S. Diep is an Assistant Teaching Professor in the Kinesiology Department at Rice University. Dr. Diep joined the Rice faculty in 2017 and currently teaches Principles of Public and Community Health, Disparities in Health in America, and other Health Sciences courses. She also serves as a major advisor for Health Sciences.
Dr. Diep earned her Bachelor of Arts in Kinesiology (Health Sciences program) from Rice University, and her Master of Science and Doctor of Philosophy in Health Education from Texas A&M University. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in behavioral nutrition at the Children’s Nutrition Research Center at Baylor College of Medicine, where she led a series of studies on the role of acculturation in Asian American children’s diet, physical activity, and health outcomes. Afterwards, she became an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Disparities Research at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. She was part of the Center for Community-Engaged Translational Research, where she bridged her research expertise with community partnerships to develop, implement, and evaluate interventions to reduce obesity and cancer disparities in community and population-based settings.
Dr. Diep’s overall program of research focuses on understanding, preventing, and intervening on determinants (e.g., food-related parenting, acculturation, and policy) of obesity-related behaviors in at-risk populations. The majority of her work has focused on health disparities in diet and physical activity behaviors, childhood obesity prevention and intervention, and behavioral theory and health behaviors.
Dr. Diep has been active in national and international professional organizations, including The Obesity Society, Society of Behavioral Medicine, International Society of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, and Eta Sigma Gamma (a health education honorary). She is also active locally as a member of the Asian American Health Coalition. Dr. Diep has authored over 25 publications and 35 presentations locally, nationally, and internationally.