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Nicolaus (Nick) R. Espitia

PhD Student. Social Work/Sociology Candidate

Nicolaus (Nick) R. Espitia

Nicolaus Espitia, MSW'11, MA 2014, is a PhD candidate in the Joint Social Work and Sociology doctoral program. His research focuses on the political participation of undocumented Latinx immigrants. Additionally, Nicolaus has a background in community organizing, policy advocacy and program evaluation. He currently works with several immigrant advocacy groups within the state of Michigan. Previously, Nicolaus has worked as a policy consultant for a federally qualified health care clinic in Detroit, MI and as a communications specialist for the Michigan State Senate.

Research Interests/Focus

Race, Ethnicity, and Immigration, Civic Engagement, Community Organizing, Social Movements, Social Policy, and Political Participation.

Contact Information



Year Degree   School
2014 MA University of Michigan
2011 MSW University of Michigan
2006 BA University of Michigan

Richards-Schuster, K, Espitia, N. & Rodems, R. (2019). Exploring values and actions: Definitions of social justice and the civic engagement of undergraduate students. Journal of Social Work Values and Ethics, 16, 1.

Spencer, M. S. Kieffer, E., Sinco, B. R., Piatt, G., Palsimano, G., Hawkins, J., Tang, T., Lebron, A., Espitia, N., Nicklett, E. J., & Heisler, M. (2018). Outcomes at 18 months from a community health worker and peer leader diabetes self-management program for Latino adults. Diabetes Care.

Hawkins, J., Watkins, D. C., Kieffer, E., Spencer, M., Nicklett, E. J., Piatt, G., Espitia, N. R., Lebron, A., & Palmisano, G. (2017). An exploratory study of the impact of gender on health behavior among African American and Latino men with type 2 diabetes. American Journal of Men’s Health, 11(2), 344-356.

Hawkins, J., Watkins, D. C., Kieffer, E., Spenscer, M., Espitia, N., Sinco, B., & Anderson, M. (2015). Structural and psychosocial factors that influence health care use and self-management for African American and Latino men with type 2 diabetes: An exploratory study. Journal of Men's Studies, 23(2), 161-176.

Spencer, M., Hawkins, J., Espitia, N., Sinco, B., Jennings, T., Lewis, C., Palmisano, G., & Kieffer, E. (2013). Influence of a diabetes lifestyle intervention on mental health outcomes among low-income Latino and African American adults with Type 2 diabetes. Race and Social Problems, 5(2), 137-146.

Wooley, A., Valerio M., Kieffer, E., Spencer M., Sinco, B., Rosland, A., Hawkins, J., Espitia, N., & Palmisano, G. (2013). Everyday racial/ethnic discrimination, depression, and diabetes-related distress among African Americans and Latinos with diabetes. Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health.

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