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Kristen Kucera 2016-resize

Kristen L. Kucera, PhD, MSPH, ATC, LAT

Assistant Professor – Exerciser and Sport Science
Director, National Center for Catastrophic Sports Injury Research

Department of Exercise and Sport Science
University of North Carolina Chapel Hill
209 Fetzer Hall, CB# 8700
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-8700
Office: 123 Fetzer Hall
(919) 962-6228


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Dr. Kucera is an assistant professor in the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the incoming Director of the National Center for Catastrophic Sport Injury Research (  She currently teaches the undergraduate Research Methods in Exercise and Sport Science course (EXSS 273). Dr. Kucera also serves as Affiliate Faculty at the UNC Injury Prevention Research Center ( providing expertise in the focus area of Traumatic Brain Injury.  She joined the faculty in 2013 after serving as an assistant professor in the Division of Occupational and Environmental Medicine at Duke University Medical Center.  Kristen received her undergraduate degree (BS, 1994) in Athletic Training at Linfield College (McMinnville, OR).  She completed her master’s (MSPH, 2002) and doctoral (PhD, 2006) degrees in the Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  An epidemiologist and certified athletic trainer, Kristen’s research interests include sport and occupational injury epidemiology with an emphasis in musculoskeletal disorders, ergonomics, and return to work.  Her research projects have addressed problems in commercial fishermen, carpenters, youth and collegiate soccer athletes, certified athletic trainers, military cadets, and university hospital employees.  Evaluation and improved surveillance for sports and work-related injuries are another area of current and future focus.  Kristen currently has a study funded by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) examining predictors of patient lift equipment use among hospital nursing staff.