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2007 SUMR Scholars

Kristen Buxton
Xavier University of Louisiana, Class of 2008
Major: Biology, Pre-Medicine

Buxton

Kristen is passionate about preventative medicine, especially nutrition, and believes that if the healthcare system focused more on the prevention of diseases, then long-term quality of life would be much improved. During SUMR, Kristen worked with LDI Senior Fellow Therese Richmond, Ph.D., FAAN, CRNP on many aspects of the "Philadelphia Collaborative Violence Prevention Center Project," which aims to identify and understand the risks and assets of the West and Southwest Philadelphia communities in order to implement a sustainable violence intervention program. On that project Kristen collaborated with fellow SUMR scholars Ana Chireno, Kim Franklin, Stephanie Tan-Torres and Shani Taylor. She also worked with Charlene Compher, Ph.D., RD, FADA, CNSD on a bariatric surgery and obesity study, "Does attendance at postoperative office visits with the surgeon impact weight loss after gastric bypass surgery?"

Kristen was accepted to UMDNJ and is studying Medicine.

Final Presentation:
Obesity and Surgery


Living Healthy in Philadelphia

Ana M. Chireno
State University of New York at Stony Brook, Class of 2008
Major: Sociology and Philosophy Minor: International Studies

Chireno

Ana is interested in the socioeconomic determinants of health and how disparaging health outcomes concentrated in segments of the population both propagate and sustain apparent inequality. While studying at St. Anthony's at Oxford University, she became interested in the intersection of social policy and global health. During SUMR, Ana worked with LDI Senior Fellow Carmen Guerra, M.D. of the Center for Population Health and Health Disparities on a project that profiles cancer screening recipients among the Medicare population. She also worked with LDI Senior Fellow Therese Richmond, Ph.D., FAAN, CRNP on her project "Living Healthy in Philadelphia," which seeks to lessen the negative effects of violence through from a health-oriented perspective. On that project Ana collaborated with fellow SUMR scholars Kristen Buxton, Kim Franklin, Stephanie Tan-Torres and Shani Taylor.

Ana plans to pursue a M.P.H. in Global Health and a Ph.D. in Sociology.

Final Presentation:
CRC Screening in the “Old Old”: Medicare Policy and Ageism

Living Healthy in Philadelphia

Thomas Crowder
University of California at Berkeley, Class of 2008
Major: Sociology Minor: City and Regional Planning

Crowder

Thomas’ career goal is to discover and implement cost effective initiatives and financial incentives that significantly reduce health disparities. His educational goals are to research the social, economic, and environmental determinants of major medical disorders in economically depressed communities. He ultimately plans to employ his research to influence efficacious health policy development and decisions at the municipal, state, and federal levels. California Children Services in San Francisco awarded Thomas an internship to conduct case management research. He participated in research investigating the medical conditions of chronically ill children from low income families statewide to determine the most effective treatment and services. Thomas assisted in researching and analyzing a wide array of treatments and services including hospital, doctor, and clinical services, as well as diagnostic tests, various therapies, and medical equipment. This summer, During SUMR, Thomas worked with LDI Senior Fellow Jim Guevara, M.D., M.P.H. on a research project titled, "Caregivers with Depression Symptoms and Pediatric Asthma Management." The project investigated if the mental health of asthma patient caregivers was a major determinant of effectively caring for the asthmatic child. Thomas plans a multi-disciplinary career combining land use and effective community health service.

Thomas was accepted to the University of Sheffield’s Masters in Commercial Property Program.

Final Presentation:
Caregivers with Depression Symptoms and Pediatric Asthma Management

Mardieh Dennis
University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2009
Major: Health & Societies (Concentration: International Health)

Dennis

Mardieh is very interested in the study of health disparities through examination of the social, environmental, and economic determinants of health. She hopes to embark on a career path that will allow her to help improve the quality of healthcare in impoverished nations. Mardieh worked on two projects during SUMR, providing her with experience in different types of health services research. She studied racial disparities in the diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, and dementia with her mentor, RWJ Clinical Scholar Nabila Dahodwala, M.D. Mardieh also worked with LDI Senior Fellow Peter Groeneveld, M.D., M.S. on a project entitled "The Impact of Advanced Medical Devices and Procedures on Cardiovascular Diseases."

Mardieh was accepted into Johns Hopkins University’s Masters in International Health Program. In June 2010, Mardieh worked in Zambia for six months at a Health Care Consulting Firm.

Final Presentation:
The Value of Drug Eluting Coronary Stents: Quality of Life Benefit of Avoided Revascularizations

Sunita M. Desai
University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2009
Major: Economics Minor: Math

Desai

Sunita is interested in the US health care system and the complexities involved in creating a practical health care system that is both affordable and effective for a large and diverse population. While working at the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America, she became increasingly aware of the struggles many patients continually face as they try to deal with chronic conditions while carrying on with every day life. As an Economics major, Sunita is especially eager to apply ideas that lay at the core of the economics discipline to the health care sector in order to improve outcomes, patient compliance, and more. During SUMR, she worked with LDI Senior Fellow Kevin Volpp, M.D., Ph.D. on a study entitled, "Testing Strategies for Weight Loss," a randomized controlled trial testing the effectiveness of the use of financial incentives to encourage weight loss. Sunita also worked on a project with LDI Senior Fellow Jalpa Doshi, PhD, examining adherence among various populations to biological agents that have complex dosing schedules.

Sunita was accepted into The University of Pennsylvania’s Health Care Management PhD Program.

Final Presentation:
Testing Strategies for Weight Loss


Kimberly L. Franklin
University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2009
Major: Economics Minor: Math

Franklin

Kim is interested in health care policy. Specifically, she wants to develop programs and devise methods to combat the expanding health disparities that affect the African American community. In the summer of 2006 she helped design a fitness program for adolescents to help battle the obesity epidemic, which heavily impacts the African American community. Focusing on creating programs targeted at today’s youths, Kim hopes to conduct interdisciplinary research to explore the stressors of violence among youths at the Philadelphia Collaborative Violence Prevention Center. After graduation Kim plans to pursue a master’s degree in public health. During SUMR, Kimberly worked with LDI Senior Fellow Therese Richmond, Ph.D., FAAN, CRNP, on "The Philadelphia Collaborative Violence Prevention Center Project." On that project Kim collaborated with fellow SUMR scholars Ana Chireno, Kristen Buxton, Stephanie Tan-Torres and Shani Taylor. Kim also worked with Dawn Alley, Ph.D., an RWJ Scholar researching the effects of the duration of obesity, weight cycling and weight fluctuation in adult and elderly populations. Under the guidance of Dr. Alley, Kim is researching how fertility is a factor in early weight gain in African American women.

Kim works as a Health Policy Analyst with the NIH Office of Biotechnology Activities and Clinical Research Policy Analysis and Coordination Program.

Final Presentation:
Living Healthy in Philadelphia

Jessica Y. Ho
University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2009
Major: Economics and Health & Societies

Ho

Jessica has had a longtime interest in infectious diseases and global health disparities. She currently hopes to pursue a doctoral degree in Demography. During SUMR, Jessica's mentor was LDI Senior Fellow Arthur Caplan, Ph.D., and her project was entitled "Ethics of Vaccines." She worked on compiling resources for a volume on vaccine ethics and a comprehensive bibliography on the current literature available on vaccine development, policy, and legislation. Jessica also had the opportunity to conduct in-depth research on and write about the ethical, logistical, economic, and social issues involved in conducting clinical trials of HIV candidate vaccines in developing countries.

Jessica was accepted to the University of Pennsylvania’s Demography PhD Program.

Final Presentation:
Ethical Issues in the Development of an HIV Vaccine

 

Dara D. Holder
University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2008
Major: Biochemistry and Health & Societies

Holder

Dara's mentor was LDI Senior Fellow Michael Blank, Ph.D., M.P.H. Originally from Guyana in South America, Dara spent a gap year prior to college volunteering as a teaching assistant in a primary school. The lessons she learned there triggered her interest in education and social issues. For her SUMR project, Dara examined "HIV Prevention Among Substance Abusing SMI." Dara helped conduct a Rapid Assessment Test and gauge the effectiveness of the PATH intervention, a recently implemented HIV intervention program that targeted serious mentally ill patients in the Philadelphia health care system. The project presented Dara with her first opportunity to work in the social realm of medicine. She now hopes to pursue a medical career, focusing on global medicine.

Dara was accepted to Columbia University’s School of Medicine.

Final Presentation:
HIV/AIDS and Assumptions


Jeffrey Lawi
University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2008
Major: Economics

Lawi

After interning at the Hawaii Health Information Corporation and volunteering at a free health clinic, Jeff developed a passion for addressing health inequality. He became acutely aware of the diversity of people and the health needs of both individuals and populations. A student of economics, Jeff hopes to pursue a career in dental medicine while devoting time to analyze the rapidly changing landscape of health care, specifically in terms of its social component and increasing access. His SUMR projects included an investigation of the determinants of child safety seat usage in Mississippi under mentors LDI Senior Fellows Tanguy Brachet, Ph.D., and Guy David, Ph.D., as well as a comparison of the cost of obesity domestically and abroad under the guidance of LDI Senior Fellow Henry Glick, Ph.D.

After graduating, Jeffrey worked at IMS consulting. In 2010, he began working for the Clinton Health Access Initiative in Lesotho.

Final Presentation:
The association between child safety seat use and injury outcomes/An international review of cost of obesity studies

Sudha Meghan
University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2010
Major: Life Sciences & Management Program (Concentration: Neuroscience and Health Care Management)

Meghan

Sudha's research project for the summer was with her mentor, LDI Senior Fellow Mark V. Pauly, Ph.D. Her project was geared toward determining the potential for introducing health insurance in developing countries. Sudha’s interest in the health care field was sparked during her volunteer experience with the non-profit group, Comprehensive Trauma Consortium (CTC), in Bangalore, India. Her projects with CTC focused on improving Bangalore’s emergency care system, as well as working with local schools to draft a Contingency Policy for School Emergencies. Having experienced the medical arena in a developing nation, Sudha is driven to improve the accessibility and financing of health care around the world. In the future, she plans to further her education in Medicine and Management.

Sudha is working at Deloit Life Sciences.

Derek A. Ornelas
University of Norte Dame, Class of 2008
Major: Life Sciences & Management Program (Concentration: Neuroscience and Health Care Management)

Ornelas

Derek first took an interest in health policy and health services research during his time volunteering at hospitals and homeless shelters near the University of Notre Dame. It gave him an opportunity to see the need to address the health issues of the underserved in the U.S. During SUMR, Derek worked with mentors LDI Senior Fellows Ron Keren, M.D., M.P.H. and Alexander G. Fiks, M.D. His two summer projects included a study on "Community–Acquired Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus and Its Incidence in Skin and Soft Tissue Infections," and also a study on "Elective Aortic Reconstruction of the Hemi Arch and the Efficacy of Cerebral Profusion." Derek's career plans are to attend medical school and later specialize in cardiac surgery.

Derek was accepted to the University of Cincinnati School of Medicine.

Final Presentation:
Antibiotic Treatment for Non Non‐‐drainable Skin and Soft Tissue Infections

Victoria Perez
University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2008
Major: Economics and Political Science

Perez

Victoria began her research in the healthcare field as a research assistant to Julia Lynch, PhD She began researching perceived inequalities in the Spanish healthcare system. Currently, she works with Professor Lynch and LDI Senior Fellow, Annice Kim, PhD, MPH, on a project relating to elite attention to healthcare disparities. As a SUMR scholar, Victoria worked with LDI Senior Fellow Guy David, PhD, on "The Effect of Ownership Mix on utilization and Scope of Service: Market Dynamics of Addiction treatment Centers in the U.S.” Victoria's future plans are to attend graduate school.

Victoria was accepted to the University of Pennsylvania’s Health Care Management PhD Program.

Final Presentation:
Drug Addiction Treatment Centers: Market Determinants of Ownership Status

Charles A. Robinson
University of Pennsylvania, Class of 2008
Major: English with Pre-Med intent

Robinson

During SUMR, Charles explored the fields of health care management and economics, focusing on the supply side of the health care system. He worked with LDI Senior Fellow Lawton R. Burns, Ph.D. and Wharton Health Care Systems PhD candidate Michael Housman on a project examining the factors which contribute to the success or failure of medical device manufacturing firms. Charles compiled a database of companies that was used for the analysis of company performance and behavior. Focusing on measurable factors relating to firm exit, Charles and his mentors explored the relationships between specific firm characteristics and positive or negative outcomes for the firm.

Charles is working for the Advisory Board in Washington, DC.

Final Presentation:
Predictors of Liquidity Events in U.S. Medical Device Companies

Stephanie A. Tan-Torres
Brown University, Class of 2008
Major: Anthropology and English

Tan-Torres

During SUMR, Stephanie worked with LDI Senior Fellow Therese Richmond, Ph.D., FAAN, CRNP on the "Living Healthy in Philadelphia" project through the Philadelphia Collaborative Violence Prevention Center. She helped create an organizational assessment to identify possible intervention sites in the West and Southwest Philadelphia communities for youth violence prevention programs. On that project Stephanie collaborated with fellow SUMR scholars Ana Chireno, Kim Franklin, Kristen Buxton and Shani Taylor. With LDI Senior Fellow Arnold Rosoff, J.D, Stephanie worked on his book on universal healthcare. Stephanie is interested in healthcare as it pertains to improving the quality of life within developing communities. As a student of anthropology, she has conducted ethnographic work in places such as New Orleans and Philadelphia, studying the social, economic, and political issues that characterize these dynamic areas.

Final Presentation:
Living Healthy in Philadelphia

Shani C. Taylor
Duke University, Class of 2008
Major: Psychology Minor: African & American Studies

Shani Taylor

Shani's interest in medicine is augmented by her interest in health care disparities and the social determinants, among other factors, that are at work in perpetuating such differences and inequalities. She recently wrote a research paper examining the longitudinal outcomes of low birth weight infants among black women. During SUMR, Shani worked on two projects. With LDI Senior Fellow Therese Richmond, Ph.D., FAAN, CRNP, Shani worked on a project entitled "Living Healthy in Philadelphia," a collaborative intervention project aimed at reducing injury in the youth population throughout West and Southwest Philadelphia. On that project Shani collaborated with fellow SUMR scholars Ana Chireno, Kristen Buxton, Stephanie Tan-Torres and Kristen Buxton. With RWJ Health & Society Scholar Annice Kim, Ph.D., Shani worked on "The Coverage and Framing of Health Disparities in the Public Discourse." Shani's career goals include going to medical school to obtain an MD/MPH, continuing research on health disparities and to eventually apply her knowledge and expertise to affect health policy and community outreach with the hopes of reducing and possibly eliminating health disparities.

After graduating in 2008, Shani worked at the National Institutes of Health. She is now working on her Masters in Health Disparities and Inequalities at Johns Hopkins University.

Final Presentation:
Racial Health Disparities Framed in the New York Times: An Analysis of Photo Images


Living Healthy in Philadelphia

 


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