Gabriela Leon-Perez

Gabriela León-Pérez, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor
Founders Hall Room 215


2018 Ph.D. in Sociology, Vanderbilt University

2015 M.A. in Sociology, Vanderbilt University

2012 M.A. in Sociology, Texas A&M International University

Teaching Areas

Research Methods, Immigration, Health Disparities

Research Interests

International Migration, Internal Migration, Mexico-US Migration, Immigrant Health, Health Disparities


Gabriela León-Pérez is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology at Virginia Commonwealth University. ​Her research focuses on Mexican internal and international migration, the experiences of immigrants in the United States, and health disparities. 

The underlying goal of her research agenda is to clarify the role of social, structural, and contextual factors in creating health and social inequalities, as well as to identify resources that improve the outcomes of immigrants and other marginalized populations. In her most recent project, she investigated the health trajectories of return US migrants, internal migrants, and indigenous migrants from Mexico. Other on-going projects focus on Mexican skilled migration to the US and the effects of stress, legal status, and state immigrant policies on the health and well-being of immigrants. You can read more about her current work on her personal website.

Select Publications

León-Pérez, Gabriela. 2019. “Internal Migration and the Health of Indigenous Mexicans: A Longitudinal Study.” SSM-Population Health 8(August).

Donato, Katharine M., Gabriela León-Pérez, Kenneth A. Wallston, and Sunil Kripalani. 2018. “Something Old, Something New: When Gender Matters in the Relationship Between Social Support and Health.” Journal of Health and Social Behavior 59(3):352-370.

Young, Maria-Elena, Gabriela León-Pérez, Christine R. Wells, and Steven P. Wallace. 2018. “More Inclusive States, Less Poverty Among Immigrants? An Examination of Poverty, Citizenship Stratification, and State Immigrant Policies.” Population Research and Policy Review 37(2):205-228.

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