Sam Mendez

About Sam Mendez

Sam is a researcher and animated filmmaker. His films focus on cities and experimental documentary techniques; his research focuses on health equity. Sam wants to use collaborative methods and documentary techniques to improve research partnerships. How do we align people in partnership between universities and community groups? How do we center underserved communities in this work? Sam aims to find answers by working with MIT’s Open Doc Lab and public health researchers. Sam did his undergrad at Harvard, where his thesis was an animated documentary about a bodega. His inspiration came from community-based participatory research at Harvard's Viswanath Lab. In his time there, Sam worked on public health communication research. After graduation, he focused on video projects. This included a wheelchair travel series he directed in Ho Chi Minh City. More recently, he worked on public health research at Northwestern's Simon Lab. There, he focused on community engagement for a collaborative U54 grant. He also led the user-centered design process for a web resource about clinical trials. In his free time, Sam likes to learn more about web accessibility and performance art. Thesis: Health Equity Rituals: A Case for the Ritual View of Communication in an Era of Precision Medicine