Isaiah Mason is a junior from Norfolk, Virginia majoring in International Comparative Studies, with a concentration in Europe, and double minoring in Medical Sociology and Global Health. He primarily studies the influence of sociocultural factors on health experiences for marginalized communities with an interest in equity work. Additionally, Isaiah has a passion for Italian language and culture, having studied Italian throughout his time at Duke and participated in the Duke in Bologna (Summer ’19) study abroad program. At Duke, Isaiah is a David M. Rubenstein Scholar (DMRS) and Gates Scholarship Scholar, both merit scholarships for FGLI students, and serves on the executive boards of the Global Health Majors Union and the Duke Men’s Project, a program under the Women’s Center. In addition, Isaiah is an undergraduate researcher for the “Closing the Gap on Treatment Outcomes and Health Disparities in Hypertension” Bass Connections team, working with black men in Durham on self-management strategies during the pandemic. 

This project, “Crossing the Cultural Divide: Healthcare Access for African Migrants in Northern and Southern Italy,” aims to investigate the barriers and facilitators to accessing the public healthcare system throughout Italy. As an ethnography, the project will incorporate participant stories as data to understand the degree of healthcare access that exist, and potential resources needs within communities. Additionally, the project will investigate the concept of community organization for African migrants to develop a better understanding of migratory patterns and integration into Italian society. The primary output for the project will be an honors thesis with the expectation that the results can be useful for designing policy options to meet identified resource needs.”