PSU & OHSU Research Learning Communities

Clinical Science RLCs

Jennifer Barton, M.D. 
Oregon Health & Science University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Jennifer L. Barton, MD, is an academic rheumatologist. Her research focus is on health communication and rheumatic diseases. She conducts research as a staff rheumatologist at the Portland VA Health Care System, and as an Associate Professor of Medicine at Oregon Health & Science University. Dr. Barton is currently the recipient of a K23 award from NIAMS to examine goal concordance between diverse populations with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and their rheumatologists. With her study team, Dr. Barton has developed a goal measure for patients and clinicians. The current phase of this project is a survey study to measure goal concordance and factors which may be associated with goal concordance. We are actively recruiting both English and Spanish-speaking adults with RA from the OHSU rheumatology clinics and Veterans with RA from the Portland VA. After recruitment for the survey study is completed (anticipate late 2017/early 2018), we will develop a tablet-based tool to facilitate conversation around patient goals for treatment of RA and do a pilot test of the tool in the clinics.  The overarching goal of Dr. Barton’s research is to develop, test, and implement interventions to improve communication between clinicians and patients from diverse populations and reduce health disparities. 

Zach Beitte - not accepting new scholars

Zach Beattie, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Work on the computer, Data analysis, Working with the community, and Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects) 

The Oregon Center for Aging & Technology (ORCATECH) is an innovative research center, supported primarily by the NIA and closely integrated with the Layton Aging & Alzheimer’s Disease Center at OHSU.  We use and develop technologies that can assess home-based activities, providing millions of hours of real-world and rea-time activity and health data.  We focus on translating that data in actionable health and wellness outcomes, improving the lives of those age independently at home.  ORCATECH consists of a very collaborative team of researchers including: programmers who develop and maintain the technologies used to collect and store the data; data scientists and analysts who ensure data integrity, develop algorithms using the data, and analyzing data for manuscripts and abstracts; study coordinators who interact with current participants, recruit new participants, and manage study protocols (e.g. maintain IRB compliance); clinical assessors who evaluate participant cognitive health via a collection of neuropsychological tests performed in the participant’s home on a yearly basis; and research technicians who install and maintain technologies placed in participant homes.  EXITO Scholars will have the opportunity to work and gain experience in one or all of these areas based on their individual interests. 

Nicole Bowles, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Stress is a challenge for almost every worker. Dr. Bowles’ research laboratory examines the role of cannabinoid signaling in the modulation of sleep and circadian rhythms and how these signaling patterns buffer the cardiometabolic responses to psychosocial and environmental stress. Her interdisciplinary research uses a community-based participatory research framework to study populations of shift workers including on-duty Oregon firefighters as well as community engaged methods to bring diverse populations into a laboratory environment where she is able to control the environment and behaviors to systematically measure sleep and circadian phase.  

Dr. Bowles’ current projects include:

  1. Effect of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) on sleep in humans: study includes in laboratory measurements as well as epidemiological work examining cannabis use before, during, and a year post COVID-19 “stay home” orders.
  2. Shift work in firefighters: field study to examine the association between work schedule and psychosocial determinants of sleep (ex. work-life conflict), sleep duration/quality, safety and cardiovascular risk.
  3. The role of the circadian system in endocannabinoidome: use of in laboratory circadian protocol to measure variation in endocannabinoids and related molecules in humans.
photo of Deanna Britton

Deanna Britton, PhD
Portland State University                      
Accepting New Scholars  

Beginning winter term 2016, Deanna Britton, PhD, CCC-SLP, BC-ANCDS, joined the SPHR Faculty as an Assistant Professor.  She is also an Affiliate Assistant Professor at Oregon Health & Sciences University (OHSU).  Prior to joining PSU, Dr. Britton was a Speech-Language Pathology Clinical Specialist at the University of Washington Medical Center (UWMC) and Lecturer in the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences at the University of Washington, Seattle.  She is Board Certified in Neurogenic Communication Disorders in Adults by the Academy of Neurological Communication Disorders and Sciences (ANCDS).  She has published and presented on topics related to dysphagia, dysarthria, respiratory support for speech and swallowing, motor neuron disease, and spinal cord injury.  Dr. Britton’s research interests include respiratory support for speech, swallowing and cough effectiveness.  See a list of current projects here.

 

 

Nancy Elder - Not accepting new scholars

Nancy Elder
Oregon Health & Science University 
Network Director/Prof, Provisional, Oregon Rural Practice Research Network 
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research activities: Working on the computer, data entry, contacting patients to invite them to the study, creating study packets, working with clinics to schedule projects.

Topic: Screening for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease

The CAPTURE project validates a screener for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in average-risk adults. COPD is the fourth leading cause of death in the U.S. More than 10% of Oregonians age 65 and older live with COPD. Early diagnosis of COPD is essential to manage patient symptoms. COPD is under-diagnosed in part due to the reliance on and inconsistent use of spirometry in primary care. By validating this instrument with spirometry, primary care practices will have a simple and useful questionnaire to help detect COPD earlier in patients with unrecognized symptoms. The CAPTURE study will enroll patients from California, Colorado, North Carolina, and Oregon. Our research involves prospective enrollment of patients coming to the primary care clinic for a scheduled visit.

photo of Erick Gallun

Erick Gallun, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, interviewing, taking to, or communicating with people

The Gallun Lab is developing portable automated tests of central auditory processing abilities. These tests, which have been developed in the laboratory on human patients, are sensitive to auditory disabilities common in older people, hearing impaired people, and people with brain injury. These tests are ready to be translated from the laboratory into clinical practice. The new versions run on a tablet computer and are at the stage where data needs to be collected on large numbers of healthy volunteers to establish normative values and patient groups to determine diagnostic efficacy. 

Melanie Gillingham, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Fatty acid oxidation, or the process of converting fat in food to energy, is an essential pathway that helps fuel exercise, fasting and normal cardiac and retinal function. This lab is investigating a group of rare diseases where people can not oxidize fat, the fatty acid oxidation disorders, examining potential novel treatments and how decreased fat oxidation is related to glucose and diabetes. 

photo of Bruce Goldberg

Bruce Goldberg, M.D. 
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Work on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, and Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

The Accountable Health Communities project is a collaboration across Oregon regions to understand social needs and create community-wide wraparound care for highest need residents. It is a 5-year grant funded by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), to answer the primary question “Does screening for social needs plus tailored navigation to health and social services lead to improved outcomes and reduced cost of care for Medicaid and Medicare beneficiaries?” The project goals are:

  • Screening for health-related social needs (housing, food, utilities, transportation & safety)
  • Connecting patients to community services (or understanding where resources are not available or sufficient to meet needs)
  • Providing information on available resources
  • Providing navigation (referral, care plan, follow up) for highest risk patients
  • Community integration activities to reduce barriers to information sharing across health and social service sectors, reduce duplication of effort, and lower patient barriers to obtaining services
photo of PRISM team

Akram Khan, MD (MBBS)
Oregon Health & Science University                                  
Accepting New Scholars

The Pulmonary and Critical Care & Sleep Medicine (PRISM) research team was established in 2008 by Akram Khan, MD (MBBS) as the principal investigator, to advance research to improve patient outcomes in critical illness and pulmonary hypertension. We have several ongoing clinical trials in both inpatient and outpatient settings. We are part of the Clinical Trials Network for the Prevention and Early Treatment of Acute Lung Injury (PETAL), a network funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) to develop and conduct randomized controlled clinical trials to prevent or treat Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) and Sepsis.  Our team always has opportunities for students and trainees at various levels to be involved in clinical research, learn about clinical trial design by helping with patient screening and enrollment in ongoing studies. Undergraduate students interested in healthcare careers can help with data abstraction from electronic health records(work on computer) and supporting research coordinators inpatient visits the PRISM volunteer program (interviewing, talking to patients/study subjects) in the intensive care unit, emergency department or the clinic. More information is available through our website: www.prismtrials.com or www.ohsu.edu/prism

Holly Hinson - not accepting new Scholars

Holly Hinson, MCR, M.D.                            
Oregon Health & Science University                                  
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people.

Holly E. Hinson, M.D., M.C.R. is an Assistant Professor of Neurocritical Care, Neurology, and Emergency Medicine at Oregon Health and Science University. She completed her MD at University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio in 2005 and her Neurology residency at the University of Maryland in 2009. She followed her residency with subspecialty training in Neurocritical Care at Johns Hopkins University, graduating from fellowship in 2011. She joined the faculty at Oregon Health Science center later that year.  As a clinician in the Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit, she strives to provide cutting-edge care for severely brain-injured patients. Her research involves the study of inflammation after traumatic brain injury (TBI). Her long-term career goal is to advance precision medical therapies in TBI, so that clinicians can provide the right therapy, to the right patient, at the right time. In 2013, she was awarded the Oregon Multidisciplinary Training Program for Emergency Medicine Clinical Research K12 grant for her projected entitled “Fever and Inflammation in Neurotrauma (FAINT)”. She earned an American Heart Association “Young Investigator” award for an abstract based on data from FAINT entitledDifferences in Inflammatory Dysregulation in TBI versus Major Trauma. Dr. Hinson has also been active in leadership at a national level. In 2015, she was selected to participate in the American Academy of Neurology’s “Emerging Leaders Forum”. This program is designed specifically to identify, orient, and cultivate talented, highly motivated individuals into future Academy leaders. Stemming from this experience, she founded the American Academy of Neurology’s LGBTQI section in 2017.

Hugo - not accepting new students

Cinda Hugos, M.D, PT
Oregon Health & Science University                                  
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research activities: work on the computer; survey administration; data analysis; working with the community, and interviewing, talking to or communicating with study subjects.

Topic: Exercise training in multiple sclerosis

Dr. Hugos’ research focuses on symptom management of people with multiple sclerosis. She has developed programs to deliver evidence-based treatment for the management of MS-related fatigue and spasticity and now studies these in veterans and others with MS. The current spasticity study teaches research participants how to do exercises to manage spasticity. Very little information exists on what exercises people are taught or what exercises they actually do. We will ask participants which exercises they chose from the selection of exercises offered and taught during the program intervention. We would like an EXITO student to help develop a survey that can be delivered to physical therapists who treat people with MS so we can compare what exercises therapists typically teach with what exercises patients actually do.

Maria Kapantzoglou, PhD

Maria Kapantzoglou, PhD
Portland State University                                     
Accepting New Scholars

Maria Kapantzoglou, Ph.D., is an assistant professor at Portland State University (PSU) and a certified trilingual speech-language pathologist. Her research focuses on the assessment of language skills in bilingual children with and without primary language impairment. She has a Master in Measurement, Statistics and Methodological Study, and she has worked in federally funded projects to develop culturally and linguistically appropriate assessment tools for Spanish-English speaking children. She has worked with bilingual children in four different countries and in three languages: English, Spanish and Greek. At PSU, she teaches courses on speech and language disorders and supervises graduate students in the bilingual concentration.

photo of Bory Kea

Bory Kea, M.D., MCR
Oregon Health & Science University                    
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis,  interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Dr. Kea is an Emergency Physician in the Center for Policy and Research in Emergency Medicine. Her research focuses on the development of evidence-based emergency care guidelines--specifically, for the management of cardiovascular conditions—such as atrial fibrillation, and translating these guidelines into practice using dissemination and implementation methods with a patient-centered focus. She is also interested in the transition of care from the Emergency Department to home, such as how we can safely and efficiently discharge patients home from the Emergency Department with potentially high-risk conditions. She uses a variety of methodologies from mixed-methods, large datasets, to chart review, to answer different questions.

photo of Marissa Kellogg

Marissa Kellogg, M.D., MPH
Oregon Health & Science University                    
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis,  interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Dr. Marissa Kellogg is a neurologist who specializes in treating adult patients with epilepsy and seizures.  She and her colleagues at the OHSU Comprehensive Epilepsy Center conduct clinical research to try to better understand risk factors for epilepsy and seizures, as well as how to achieve optimal patient outcomes.  Dr. Kellogg is particularly interested in co-morbidities in patients with epilepsy, a public health approach to epilepsy care, global epilepsy research, and the effect of stress on seizures.

photo of Sarah Key-DeLyria

Sarah Key-DeLyria, PhD
Portland State University          
Accepting New Scholars

Dr. Key-DeLyria's Neurolinguistics Lab in the Speech & Hearing Sciences Department examines how cognitive and linguistic processes work together to support communication in adults with and without traumatic brain injury history, aphasia, or other sources of cognitive impairments such as ADHD or learning disability. Our current projects are basic, translational, and clinical: tracking artificial grammar learning in aphasia, measuring a syntactic processing ERP (P600) in traumatic brain injury survivors, developing an executive function support program for PSU students with executive functioning impairments, supporting a friending program with a local brain injury non-profit, and learning about how adults process emojis. :) Our projects are currently supported by a small internal grant.

Students in the lab contribute to all phases of research including developing new ideas, designing studies, organizing background research, collecting data, analyzing data, and preparing presentations and manuscripts. Undergraduate, post-baccalaureate, and graduate students work together on the projects, and students benefit from the additional mentorship of other students further along in their education. The goals of the student research experience are to become more familiar with the process of research and identify as a researcher in creating new knowledge. Further goals depend on a student's specific career goals and the stage of projects in the lab.

Laurie King, PhD, PT

Laurie King, PhD, PT
Oregon Health & Science University          
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis

Laurie King PhD, PT is currently an Associate Professor in the Department of Neurology at Oregon Health & Sciences University and co-director of the Balance Disorders Laboratory. She received her Doctor of Philosophy degree from Medical College of Virginia in Richmond, Virginia, in Anatomy and Neurobiology. Prior to that, she graduated from Mayo School of Health Sciences in Rochester MN with a Masters in Physical Therapy. She has over 15 years clinical experience treating neurologically impaired patients. She has over 30 peer-reviewed publications and is currently funded by the NIH and the Department of Defense to study balance and gait and rehabilitation in people with neurologic disorders.

Current research interests include the study of gait and balance deficits in people with neurologic deficits including traumatic brain injury and Parkinson’s disease. Specifically, our lab studies emerging new technologies such as wearable sensors to detect deficits. We are also interested in rehabilitation techniques and improving best practices for rehabilitation after neurologic injury.

Todd-not taking new scholars

Todd Korthius, M.D., MPH
Oregon Health & Science University          
Not accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Dr. Korthuis’ research focuses on improving the integration of addiction treatment in diverse health care settings, including HIV clinics and rural primary care clinics. Currently funded research includes the CTN-0067 CHOICES trial of clinic-based extended-release naltrexone in North American HIV clinics, the BRAVO trial of clinic-based buprenorphine for opioid use disorder treatment in Vietnam HIV clinics, and the MARIPOHSA study of patient-provider communication about substance use in HIV clinics. 

 Nora Gray, PhD

Nora Gray, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on a computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples 

Aging, Dementia, & Technology: • Our lab uses cell culture and mouse model systems to investigate how potential therapeutic agents improve neuronal health and memory in the context of Alzheimer’s disease. Our goal is to identify the most promising therapies, as well as novel therapeutic targets, that can then go on to be tested in clinical trials.

Derek Lam, M.D.

Derek Lam, M.D.
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars 

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, Survey administration, data analysis, working with the community,  communicating with people

Dr. Lam is an otolaryngologist (Ear, Nose & Throat surgeon) who studies the diagnosis and treatment of obstructive sleep apnea in children. This is a condition characterized by heavy snoring and repetitive airway resulting in repeated arousals and disrupted sleep. He is interested in studying the utility and impact of different methods of diagnosis and evaluation including overnight sleep studies and drug-induced sleep endoscopy, as well as predicting the outcomes of surgery for this condition. Since many of our families are primarily Spanish speaking, ability to speak Spanish fluently is preferred though not required. 

Sunny Lin PhD, MS
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, working with the community, interviewing/talking to/or communicating with people

Dr. Lin’s research examines the data generation, analysis, and utilization process that facilitates healthcare and public health delivery in the US today. This work emphasizes the role of people, policy, and structures in generating, analyzing, and using data to improve health system performance, population health outcomes, and address health inequities. In addition to collecting primary data on the data generation process, Dr. Lin specializes in the use of secondary data to understand and evaluate patterns of healthcare utilization and information sharing.

 

Kristen Mackiewicz Seghete, PhD     

Kristen Mackiewicz Seghete, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University                           
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, working with the community, interviewing/talking to/or communicating with people

The Stress, Cognition, Affect, and Neuroimaging (SCAN) lab is focused on the continuum of translational research, from basic clinical science to the evaluation of preventive interventions for pregnant and postpartum people who are at increased risk for developing depression or substance use disorders due to biological predispositions, environmental factors, or individual or systemic experiences (i.e. early life adversity). Our work emphasizes neurobiological methods to identify cognitive and emotional processes that could be targets for change in behavioral interventions, particularly mindfulness-based interventions. We are passionate about understanding how we can work to prevent the emergence of postpartum mental health illnesses and support parenting. I am also a licensed clinical psychologist with extensive clinical expertise working in women’s mental health and conducting pediatric neuropsychological assessments.

Martina - not accepting new Scholars

Martina Mancini, PhD    
Oregon Health & Science University                           
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis

The Balance Disorders Laboratory (Horak, King, Mancini) examines how motor signals sent to muscles and sensory information about body position interact to maintain a person's balance while standing or walking. Diseases or injury that damage the motor or sensory (vestibular injury, multiple sclerosis, parkinsonism, concussion) pathways can disrupt balance. In addition to studying how balance control is disrupted, our laboratory is utilizing novel balance training interventions along with state-of-the-art brain imaging (e.g. MRI, fNIRS) to determine rehabilitation efficacy in clinical populations.

Andrew McHill, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Sleep, Chronobiology, and Health Laboratory, OHSU School of Nursing 

Our laboratory focuses on understanding why insufficient sleep and being awake during the night leads to poorer health and impaired cognitive performance. In particular, we study how eating when our body is promoting sleep and chronic short sleep influences energy expenditure, glucose metabolism, cardiovascular health, and overall body composition. With the invention of electrical lighting, humans have the ability to extend work and social activities far into the biological night, when the internal circadian timing system is promoting sleep. Wakefulness during this ‘circadian misalignment’ and disrupted sleep are associated with decreased mood and performance, impaired daytime sleep, excessive sleepiness, and a multitude of adverse health outcomes including metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and obesity. While recent evidence has begun to elucidate how eating during the night and disrupted sleep influences health, more information is needed about mechanisms and specifics of how diet, metabolism, and cardiometabolic health interact during circadian misalignment and short sleep. This is of particular importance in the shift-working population, as shift workers compose ~20% of the United States workforce, and the need for 24-hour operations is unavoidable. 

Current studies: We use both field and in-laboratory protocols to mechanisms by which shiftwork impair health and cognition. This includes working with local transportation industries and nurse professionals. We are also beginning to examine how common diets may play a role in how our internal clocks can adjust to new time zones.

Jessina McGregor

Jessina McGregor, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University            
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Dr. McGregor is a pharmacoepidemiologist who conducts clinical research primarily focused in the areas of prudent antimicrobial prescribing, multidrug-resistant infections, healthcare-
associated infections, and risk prediction. She is currently leading a study to develop of risk score to guide prudent antibiotic prescribing for uninary tract infections in primary care settings; and is engaged in work evaluating antibiotic utilization metrics. Secondary areas of research include evaluations of appropriate medications in other clinical areas, such as cardiovascular disease and pain management.

Bonnie Nagel, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University            
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, interview/talking to/or communicating with people

Dr. Nagel's research focuses on adolescent brain and cognitive development in healthy and at-risk populations. Her work has primarily focused on understanding the development of executive, emotional, and reward-based networks in the brain using neuroimaging and how perturbations to these systems may result in a heightened vulnerability for mental illness during the adolescent and young adult years. More specifically, her lab has been conducting longitudinal neuroimaging studies of Portland-area youth for the past 10 years, with aims toward identifying neurobiological markers of risk and resilience for psychopathology and hopes of ultimately informing more targeted intervention and prevention efforts.

Emily D. Quinn

Emily D. Quinn, PhD, CCC-SLP
Oregon Health & Science University            
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, working with the community, interview/talking to/or communicating with people

Emily D. Quinn, PhD, CCC-SLP is a certified speech-language pathologist and clinician-scientist. Her research is focused on optimizing language interventions for children with language impairments and neurodevelopmental disabilities.  She has expertise in caregiver-implemented interventions, telehealth and distance education, and augmentative and alternative communication (AAC).  All of the research projects connected to this RLC are related to language interventions for children with language impairments for children with neurodevelopmental disabilities. Current projects involve: delivering a language intervention via telehealth to children with Down Syndrome, providing a language intervention via telehealth to children and families living in rural communities, and developing a classroom-based augmentative and alternative communication intervention for children severe intellectual and developmental disabilities. This RLC would be appropriate for an EXITO scholar interested in speech-language pathology, child development, developmental psychology and neurodevelopmental disabilities.

Andrew Riley

Andrew Riley, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University                                  
Additional RLC Leader: Dave Wagner, PhD
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

Our research focuses on creating and evaluating behavioral health interventions for children and families across a spectrum of medical and social complexity. Dr.  Andrew Riley’s research focuses on the integration of behavioral services into pediatric primary and the dissemination of evidence-based parenting practices to promote population health. His current work focuses on developing a precision, family-centered approach to providing parents with behavioral guidance in primary care. Dr. David Wagner studies the impact of multi-system psychosocial interventions on health status and cost-effectiveness for children with chronic illnesses and highly complex social situations. He is currently evaluating the effectiveness of Novel Interventions in Children’s Healthcare (NICH), an intensive, multi-pronged intervention for children whose medical conditions are poorly controlled despite high-utilization of medical services.  Our research utilizes quantitative and mixed methods, secondary data analysis, and clinical trials. Students may contribute to the recruitment of participants, data collection, data analysis, medical record review, systematic literature reviews, local and national conference presentations, and manuscript preparation.

Jon Purnell - not accepting new Scholars

Jon Purnell, M.D.
Oregon Health & Science University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, data analysis of animal-based research 

Dr. Purnell's research focuses on the causes and consequences of obesity, with a focus on mechanisms of insulin resistance and diabetes.  Current studies include groups of patients who are undergoing normal pregnancy related weight gain and who have gestational diabetes, those who've undergone gastric bypass surgery, and patients with rare fatty acid oxidation disorders. A recent study also examined the effect of estrogen replacement therapy in menopausal primates on body composition changes, fat distribution, and insulin sensitivity. The findings from this study have particular relevance to women who are going through menopause, as it may provide evidence for the beneficial effect of estrogen replacement to prevent both Central obesity and onset of type 2 diabetes.

Lina Reiss, PhD
Associate Professor of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Surgery, School of Medicine
Associate Professor of Biomedical Engineering, School of Medicine
Neuroscience Graduate Program, School of Medicine
Accepting New Scholars

Short description: Study of the (1) basic science of hearing and (2) disparities in hearing related pathologies in latinx communities.

There are two laboratories: a human clinical research laboratory, and basic science laboratory. In the clinical lab, we study pitch and speech perception in children and adults with cochlear implants and/or hearing aids.  In the basic science lab, we are currently studying how to improve neural survival with cochlear implants, using various methods including electrophysiological measures and immunolabeling/microscopy.  Another project is conducting a survey to understand why there are disparities in outcomes with cochlear implants in children from Hispanic, Spanish-speaking families as compared to bilingual or English-speaking families. 

 

Dr. Martin Schreiber

Trauma Research Lab 
Principal Investigators:  Dr. Martin Schreiber and Dr. David Zonies                    
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples, working with the community, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

The Trauma Research Lab directs a laboratory and clinical trial group that studies early resuscitation after critical trauma. This includes ongoing studies of traumatic brain injury, acute blood loss and replacement, and blood clots in an effort to reduce death and disability after traumatic injury. This group works both with animal models as well as humans.

Steven Shea

Steven Shea, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, human clinical research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Clinical Physiology and Chronobiology Program (Includes PIs: Shea, Bowles, Thosar)

The severity of many diseases varies across the 24-hour period. For example, heart attacks occur most frequently in the morning, and asthma is generally worst at night. The focus of Dr. Shea's research is to understand the biological basis behind these changes in disease severity across the day and night, for instance, are they caused by the body clock (endogenous circadian pacemaker) or attributable to behaviors that occur on a regular daily basis, such as the sleep/wake cycle. Understanding the basis of these pathophysiological changes may provide insight into the underlying causes of disease and could lead to better therapy (e.g. appropriate timing of medication), and countermeasures to reduce the adverse health effects of shift work.

Current studies: Use in laboratory circadian protocols to separate contributions of the circadian system and behavior to examine 1) the mechanisms of non-dipping blood pressure (<10% decrease of blood pressure during the biological night) in white and black Americans; and 2) the potential differential beta adrenergic receptor activity in the heart (measured using positron emission tomography [PET]) in participants with and without obesity (body mass index ≥30).

Eric Simpson

Eric Simpson, M.D. M.C.R.
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

The Community-based Assessment of Skin Care, Allergies, and Eczema (CASCADE) study is an NIH-funded pragmatic, multi-site, randomized community based trial which aims to prevent atopic dermatitis (eczema), allergies, and asthma in infants. Dermatologist Dr. Eric Simpson, OHSU dermatologist, along with the Oregon Rural Practice-based Research Network (ORPRN) at OHSU, will enroll 1,250 pairs, each consisting of a parent/legal guardian and an infant age 0-2 months, from 25 community-based family medicine and pediatric clinics in Colorado, Oregon, North Carolina, and Wisconsin. This RLC is part of a collaboration with practice-based research networks in the four states; the EXITO student would be housed at the Oregon Rural Practice-based Research Network (ORPRN) at OHSU. This RLC opportunity would be a good fit for an EXITO scholar interested in research in the primary care setting, rural populations, and community health.

Alan Teo, M.D., M.S.

Alan Teo, M.D., M.S.
Oregon Health & Science University                                  
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

My research focuses on the role of social relationships in influencing mental health outcomes. Within this broad area, there are currently three aspects in three different populations that I focus on.

First, in partnership with colleagues in Japan, I study hikikomori, a form of social isolation typified by adolescents and young adults who withdraw from social contact with others. Our research has demonstrated hikikomori exists not only in Japan but all over the world. We are currently working on ways to better assess and measure hikikomori, as well as understand risk factors that may lead to hikikomori. Second, in older adults I study how social connectedness can help prevent major depressive disorder and reduce risk for suicide. Some of this work includes examining ways to reduce loneliness among military veterans, many of whom may be lonely and socially isolated. Finally, in younger military veterans I have been examining the potential for using social media platforms—particularly Facebook—as a way to promote help-seeking among those at-risk for psychiatric disorders or suicidal thoughts. The hope of these areas of work is to eventually design novel interventions that bolster social connectedness and promote suicide prevention. More information is available at DrAlanTeo.com.

The EXITO’s students role would likely be to assist with one of my projects in one of my three primary areas of work: 1) understanding hikikomori and social withdrawal, 2) studying loneliness in veterans with depression, or 3) developing online or social media-based approaches to enhance help-seeking for mental health problems. This could involve data that has already been collected and using computer-based software to help to prepare analysis of that data. Or it could involve preparation and collection of new data.

Saurabh Thosar, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Dr. Thosar’s current research program includes investigating the mechanisms by which common behaviors (e.g., physical in/activity, food intake, and sleep) and the circadian system affect cardiometabolic health in humans. We also study how common behaviors such as physical activity and sleep interact. The long-term goal of our group is to inform the development of improved preventative (e.g., physical activity), and remedial (e.g., timing of medications) countermeasures against cardiometabolic disease. 


Current projects include: 1) Understanding the effects of chronic sedentary behavior on cardiovascular function and sleep; 2) Understanding the effects of different habitual sleep durations on health; 3) Investigating circadian rhythms in coronary microvascular function; and 4) Identifying the determinants of blood pressure during sleep.

David Wagner

David Wagner, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University               
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

David V. Wagner is a clinician-scientist with a line of research emphasizing the evaluation and dissemination of evidence-based interventions for youth and families who are experiencing high social risk. He has expertise treating and studying highly vulnerable children, adolescents, and families, with a particular focus on youth living in poverty who are unresponsive to typical medical and behavioral health interventions. His first-hand experiences with providing home-and community-based services to at-risk families and observing the barriers they encounter have informed efforts to design and evaluate treatments that can address the limitations of the current standard of care to more effectively overcome the challenges encountered by this population. As the Research Director for the Novel Interventions in Children’s Healthcare (NICH) program, his research efforts specifically examine how multisystem interventions can improve adherence and reduce medical complications in socially vulnerable youth with chronic health conditions. Current research projects include evaluating the role of technology in improved self- management, prospectively identifying youth at risk for poor medical outcomes, and sustainably disseminating a multisystem intervention with fidelity to other healthcare systems (e.g., Central Oregon, Stanford Children’s Health).

Specifically, an EXITO student’s role in our research may include gaining the following experiences: conducting literature reviews, entering, organizing, and analyzing data into Excel/SPSS, and performing electronic medical chart reviews for research purposes. Depending on stage of learning and ongoing research opportunities, the student will likely also participate in one or more of the following: conducting mentored reviews of submitted articles, coding video interactions and/or articles, consenting and providing survey-based assessments to youth and their caregivers, assisting with writing of abstracts or manuscripts, leading individual projects with goal of creating presentations for conferences, and other research-related activities as approved by the IRB.

Anna Wilson

Anna Wilson, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University               
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Advancing Research in Pediatric Pain is led by Drs. Anna Wilson and Amy Holley, and focuses on the prevention of chronic pain and related poor health outcomes in children and adolescents. The lab integrates pain psychophysiology with developmental and pediatric psychology approaches to examine individual and familial risk and protective factors in youth at increased risk for chronic pain due to family history, acute pain experiences, and depression. The lab has a number of related projects examining prescription opioid misuse, physical activity, pain neuroimaging, and peri-operative pain and anxiety.

Biological Science RLCs

Anupriya Agarwal

Anupriya Agarwal, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on a computer,  working with biological samples

Dr. Argarwal studies the novel drivers of disease initiation, progression, and drug resistance in leukemia. The lab studies the interplay of genetic evens and the tumor microenvironment required to promote growth of leukemia cells and conferring drug resistance. The goal is to better understand the pathobiology and inform the development of novel therapies for patients. 

Daniel Ballhorn, PhD Portland State University  Accepting New Scholars  Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.  In the Ballhorn lab, we are interested in interactions between organisms of different trophic levels including plants, herbivores as well as pathogenic and mutualistic microbes (fungi and bacteria). Furthermore, we study the effects of abiotic factors on these complex interactions. In our research, we combine laboratory

Daniel Ballhorn, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

In the Ballhorn lab, we are interested in interactions between organisms of different trophic levels including plants, herbivores as well as pathogenic and mutualistic microbes (fungi and bacteria). Furthermore, we study the effects of abiotic factors on these complex interactions. In our research, we combine laboratory approaches and field experiments to obtain a deeper functional understanding of these interactions in nature. Lab Research Activities: Working on the computer. Data analysis. Working with chemicals. reagents, or biological samples.

Matthew Butler

Matthew Butler, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Work on the computer, Data analysis, Animal-based research, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples

We focus our research on biological clocks – both on how these clocks are set by daily environmental cues, and how the breakdown of clock timing in the body contributes to disease. To answer these questions, we conduct neuroendocrinology and behavior research in mouse models and epidemiological studies in human cohorts to inform our approaches.

Depending on the student’s interests, and the state of the research lab do to covid-19 related restrictions, student work may fall into two general areas. Mouse-related research. This would entail animal husbandry, observations and analysis of mouse behavior, and then in the lab, measuring protein and gene expression in brain slices. Analysis-related research. We have a number of epidemiological datasets and physiological measures that can support research projects in the health correlates of sleep, circadian timing, and pupil responses to light.  

Gillepse - not accepting new scholars

Peter Barr-Gillespie, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Data Analyses, Animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples

The Barr-Gillespie Lab studies mechanoelectrical transduction by hair cells, sensory cells of the inner ear. Hair-cell transduction is carried out by the hair bundle, a cluster of actin-rich stereocilia. The lab is particularly interested in the molecules that are used to construct the hair bundle and those that compose the transduction apparatus. While our approach is highly interdisciplinary, we have pioneered the use of mass spectrometry to detect and measure hair bundle proteins.

Michael Bartlett

Michael Bartlett, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Associate Professor Michael Bartlett joined the PSU Biology Department in 2002. He received a B.S. in Microbiology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (1990), and a PhD in Cellular and Molecular Biology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (1997). He was then an NIH Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of California-San Diego until 2002. Dr. Bartlett's research at PSU focuses on the eukaryotic-type transcription machinery found in the hyperthermophile archaeon Pyrococcus furiosus. By combining cross-linking and mutagenesis approaches in vitro, with genetic approaches in vivo, Dr. Bartlett and his students are defining the positions and roles of basal transcription factors in the transcription initiation mechanism and gene regulation

Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Mitch Cruzan

Mitch Cruzan, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities: Working on the computer. Data analysis. Working with chemicals. reagents, or biological samples.

EXITO scholars will study clonal evolution using the common monkeyflower (Mimulus guttatus) as an analogue for mammalian cancer. The Mimulus salt tolerance hydroponic system provides an easily manipulated and accessible system for student investigations in clonal evolution. Plant clones can be presented as a reasonable analogue of tumors as they display variation in success and rates of growth when challenged by stringent environmental conditions (salinity – analogous to drug treatments). Experiences and training for EXITO scholars will be enhanced by exposure to a range of broadly-applicable biological and bioinformatics methods including wet-lab procedures for RNA and DNA sample preparation, Illumuna library preparation, and bioinformatic methods for sequence alignment and the identification of SNPs. Undergraduates will have the benefit of mentoring from a graduate student who will work closely with them and who will be primarily responsible for the development and success of the project. This research will generate independent research projects for one or two EXITO scholars. 

Matthew Drake

Matthew Drake, M.D.
Oregon Health & Science University
Additional RLC Leaders:  Allison Fryer, Ph.D., David Jacoby, M.D.
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples

Focusing on the origins of lung disease, Drs. Jacoby, Fryer and Drake comprise a laboratory that studies asthma. They use viral infection, pesticides, air pollution and allergens in animals, organ tissues, and isolated cells to map nerves supplying he lung and learn how inflammation changes neural control of the lungs to cause asthma. 

estes - not accepting new scholars

Suzanne Estes, PhD
Portland State University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Dr. Estes' research focuses on the molecular and functional genetic underpinnings of both adaptive and maladaptive evolution.  Her lab uses techniques of experimental evolution in the tiny model nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans, combined with genetic and genomic tools to study a range of topics including the molecular genetic bases of sperm size evolution and the role of new mutation in fitness evolution.  Dr. Estes teaches Genetics, Evolution, and will begin teaching Evolutionary Genetics next year. Dr. Estes was featured in Science magazine, you can read about it here. 

Gerasimos Fergadiotis

Gerasimos Fergadiotis, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, Data analysis, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

Our line of research is focused on the development of psychometric applications for assessing people with communication disorders after a stroke. Our goal is to develop “smart” assessment tools that harvest the computational power of machines to assist in clinical decision making. For example, we are working on “training” algorithms to automatically recognize the speech patterns of people with communication disorders. We are also working on “training” machines to comprehend the meaning of words, identify when a speaker with a communication disorder inadvertently produces the wrong word, and guess what a person really wanted to say. Given the nature of our projects, our intradisciplinary team includes professionals from various fields such as speech language pathology, psychometrics, computational linguistics, statistics, and computer science. Students are invited to participate in all aspects of scientific inquiry and depending of each student’s unique profile, experiences, and aspirations, some students may be more heavily involved in the clinical or the technical aspect of our projects.

Angela Garinis

Angela Garinis, PhD, CCC-A  
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Work on the computer, work with the community, interview and talk to patients and their families who are interested in our research. The student will also consent patients who would like to participate in our studies. The student will have the opportunity to present at local, and when possible, national conferences. The EXITO student will play an active role in the entire research process from recruiting patients to preparing a presentation after data analyses. The goal of this research experience is to familiarize each student with the research process, and the complexities of running their own laboratory.  

My primary research interests involve improving non-invasive techniques for the diagnoses of middle-ear and/or cochlear dysfunction. I have a strong interest in the diagnoses and monitoring of ototoxic (drug-induced) hearing loss in patients receiving ototoxic treatments. My current NIH-NIDCD funding [R21DC016128-01A1] is focused on investigating the effects of ototoxic treatments on the cochlear and medial efferent auditory system in patients with cystic fibrosis. I have become deeply invested in educating patients with CF and their physicians about the risk of aminoglycoside-induced hearing loss, as well as assisting the Oregon Health & Science University CF centers with developing and mandating a standardized hearing screening protocol for patients. My research has extended to investigate the risks of ototoxic side effects from intravenous gentamicin treatments for sepsis in infants admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU).  Dr. Peter Steyger and I were recently awarded an NIH R01 to begin these studies. The outcome of this research is two-fold, in that, (i) we hope to better understand the mechanism of ototoxic damage in these vulnerable populations and (ii) we hope to determine if our current clinical hearing tests are adequate enough to monitor for drug-induced hearing loss.

Beth Habecker, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Work on a computer, data analysis, perform animal-based research, and work with chemicals, reagents, and biological samples

My lab is interested in understanding how nerves are affected by injury, and how neuronal changes impact target tissues. Our main focus is trying to understand the changes that occur in cardiac nerves after myocardial infarction (MI; aka heart attack). Alterations to sympathetic nerves within the heart after myocardial infarction can trigger arrhythmias and sudden cardiac death. These neuronal changes are not fully understood, but we know that nerves degenerate and then regrow within the heart, and we know that the types of substances released by nerves can change after MI. We are trying to understand the molecular basis for these changes in nerve distribution and function, and how they impact the heart. We use a variety of molecular, biochemical, and histological techniques to investigate the regulation of these proteins and genes, using cell lines, primary neuronal cultures, and whole animal studies.

jonker - not accepting new scholars

Sonnet Jonker, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Additional RLC Leaders: Natasha Chattergoon, Research Assistant Professor
Not Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities: Work on a computer, communicate with people, analyze data, perform animal based research, and work with chemicals, reagents and biological samples

Dr. Jonker focuses on cardiovascular health.  Her lab studies how the hormonal, hemodynamic and nutritional environments influence the growth, maturation and metabolism of the fetal heart. 

Lisa Karstens

Lisa Karstens, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities:  Work on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

The Karstens Lab broadly investigates how bacteria and other microbes- collectively referred to as the microbiome- contribute to human health, with a focus on bladder disorders and women’s health. To accomplish this goal, our lab focuses on developing computational approaches to extract and integrate information from biomedical big data  to identify different types of microbes and their functions.

EXITO students will have the opportunity to be involved with or shadow the many facets of interdisciplinary research (clinical, basic, and computational). The specific role the EXITO student will play in the lab is dependent on their career goals and the stage of projects in the lab. Examples are: Critically surveying and evaluating existing literature, defining a research question, reproducible research and data analysis for microbiome studies, basic laboratory methods to study the microbiome.  

Miranda Lim,

Miranda Lim, M.D., PhD          
Oregon Health & Science University
Additional RLC Leaders: Carolyn Jones, Ph.D.                    
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples, working with the community, interviewing/talking to/or communicating with people

Dr Lim focuses her research on sleep. The research goals of the Lim Laboratory are to discover how sleep modulates processes in the developing brain and in neurodegenerative disease. We study the sleep EEG in rodent models of TBI/PTSD, autism and Alzheimer's disorders, and directly translate our basic sleep research findings into the clinical practice of patients with these disorders.

Brooke Napier, PhD
Portland State University
Not Accepting New Scholars

What drives initiation and severity of sepsis? Sepsis is a deleterious immune response to infection that leads to life-threatening organ failure and is one of the leading causes of death in the intensive care unit (ICU). Though it has plagued humanity for thousands of years, sepsis is a complex biological scenario that makes it inherently difficult to study, and even more difficult to diagnose and treat in the clinic. The long-term goal of the Napier Lab is to identify and manipulate specific host factors that initiate and drive sepsis severity and mortality. We use our strong expertise in innate immunity, inflammation, and bacterial infections to probe host factors that may drive sepsis.

How does the Westernized diet influence immunity? Recent studies have shed light on the role of diet in regulating the immune system and associated inflammatory diseases. Specifically, the Western Diet, a diet that arose nearly 10,000 years ago during the Neolithic period that is low-fiber and high in saturated fats and sugars, is one of the most prevalent diets in Westernized nations and is associated with more severe inflammatory diseases. Our lab studies the effect of this diet on reprogramming the immune system and altering sepsis outcomes.

What genes regulate inflammatory cell death? Cell death and release of proinflammatory mediators contribute to mortality during infection and septic shock. Specifically, caspase-11-dependent cell death contributes to pathology and decreases in survival time in sepsis models and some infection models. We used a myriad of techniques, including CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing systems, to identify new proteins and pathways that contribute to caspase-11-dependent cell death during septic conditions and bacterial infection.

Angela Ozburn, PhD

Angela Ozburn, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities: Data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples

Research in Dr. Ozburn's laboratory is directed toward a better understanding of the molecular mechanisms that underlie addiction and improved treatment of substance use disorders.  The specific goals of her research are to: 1) identify mechanisms mediating circadian gene effects on drug- and mood-related behaviors, and 2) identify how altering specific brain activity can alter alcohol-related behaviors and identify transcriptional mechanisms that underlie lasting reductions in binge-like drinking.

Jason Podrabsky, PhD

Jason Podrabsky, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

On a basic research level, Dr. Podrabsky's aim is to understand how organisms (specifically fish) adjust or adapt their life history, behavior, physiology, biochemistry, and molecular biology in order to thrive in marginal or extreme environments.  Dr. Podrabsky's lab uses an integrative approach to our research that spans from organismal physiology and behavior to genomics (exploring the DNA sequence), transcriptomics (the part of the genome that is expressed at any given time), and metabolomics (the small molecules and metabolic intermediates that are present or active at any given time).  They hope to apply our knowledge to improve the human condition.  They believe that nature, through evolution, has already solved many problems that cause or contribute to human diseases. By studying organisms that have evolved to survive in conditions that challenge human physiology or cause damage to human tissues, we can better understand how to treat or prevent these diseases in humans. 

Todd Rosensteil

Todd Rosensteil PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Dr. Todd Rosenstiel is a member of the CLEE research faculty and the Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at PSU. The Center for Life in Extreme Environments (CLEE) is committed to fostering transformative science by expanding understanding of life as we know it, by promoting science education for future generations, and by sharing exciting discoveries of our world and beyond. Dr. Rosenstiel focuses his work on plant-functional biology, biosphere biology, and the interactions between the biosphere and atmosphere.

Rebecca Skalsky, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University                                
Not accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Basic molecular biology: working with chemicals, reagents, and biological samples, basic bioinformatic: working on the computer (sequence alignments)

Dr. Skalsky studies the molecular biology of host-pathogen interactions- specifically, post-transcriptional control of gene expression and RNA interference in the context of DNA tumor virus infection.  This lab is interested in how viruses manipulate the RNAi machinery and what role this plays in virus-associated cancers.

slayden - not accepting new scholars

Ov Slayden, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University                                
Not accepting New Scholars

Research activities:  Computer work, Data analysis, Animal-based research, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Ov Slayden, PhD, is an Associate Professor in the Division of Reproductive & Developmental Sciences at the Oregon National Primate Research Center and has joint appointments in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and in Physiology and Pharmacology in the School of Medicine, OHSU, Disorders affecting the reproductive tract including polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), miscarriage, endometriosis, and excessive uterine bleeding; as well as unplanned pregnancy, continue to levy a heavy burden on women's health. Our laboratory employs animal models to investigate factors that mediate the action of steroid hormones on the fallopian tubes, uterus cervix, and vagina.  We use techniques including cell culture, histology, immunohistochemistry, in situ hybridization, laser capture microdissection, quantitative real-time PCR and contrast-enhanced ultrasonography. Our work bridges the gap between bench research and clinical trials. We are keenly focused on understanding menstrual disorders and the relationship of heavy uterine bleeding and the etiology of endometriosis. Our broad premise is that a better understanding of disorders that underlie irregular and excessive menstrual bleeding can be leveraged to improve the outcome of endometriosis therapy. We have developed methods for creating endometriosis in disease-free animals in order to carry out experiments on the pathophysiological events during lesion establishment. We are undertaking studies to image and ablate endometriotic lesions during gynecologic surgery.

Ken Stedman, PhD

Ken Stedman, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Dr. Stedman's research focuses on viruses of the extremely thermophilic archaeon (also known as archaebacteria) Sulfolobus and other viruses in volcanic hot springs. These viruses are completely different, both in structure and sequence, from any other known viruses. They are interested in how these viruses and their hosts function at very high temperatures (80C = 176F) and high acidity (pH below 4). We use genetic, genomic, structural and biochemical tools to answer these questions.

Recently they discovered a completely new group of viruses in an acidic hot lake that appears to have formed by an unprecedented RNA-DNA recombination event.  They use bioinformatics, virology and biochemistry to analyze this recombination. 

While looking for virus fossils, they have discovered a way to reversibly inactivate viruses, which may revolutionize vaccine formulation, potentially saving millions of lives.  They are currently testing vaccines for stabilization.

Anne Thompson, PhD

Anne Thompson, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, working with microorganisms, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Phytoplankton in the open oceans are responsible for half of the oxygen in our atmosphere and have been important in shaping the atmosphere of Earth as we know it today. These abundant and ubiquitous populations of microorganisms are also the foundation of marine food webs and play important roles in the global carbon cycle. In our lab, we study the ecology of the very abundant cyanobacterium called Prochlorococcus, which is the most abundant photosynthetic cell on the planet Earth. Prochlorococcus is very diverse at the genetic level, but the consequences of this diversity to their role in global processes is poorly understood. In my lab, we study natural populations of Prochlorococcus in the open ocean to discover the relationship between genetic diversity and ecosystem function. 

Currently, it is thought that Prochlorococcus diversity is contained within twelve distinct “clades”, or lineages of similar genotypes. Using molecular tools to quantify different clades in field samples, we know that different clades have different distributions over gradients in light, temperature, and nutrients. However, these gradients have only been coarsely sampled. For example, we understand how Prochlorococcus diversity and abundance change at 100 mile intervals between the North Atlantic and South Atlantic but do not understand how Prochlorococcus responds to mesoscale (1-100 mile) physical features such as upwelling, convergence fronts, or eddies, which are common in the ocean. A large gap in our understanding lies in how Prochlorococcus diversity and abundance changes over mesoscale physical features. Some mesoscale features such convergence fronts are considered "hot spots" for biological activity, so could have a strong influence on productivity in the oceans. Prochlorococcus typically prefers nutrient poor waters, so it is unclear how this abundant cell would respond to the accumulation of nutrients and particles at open ocean fronts. Understanding how Prochlorococcus contributes to these hot spots would help assess the importance of Prochlorococcus on global scales and inform ecosystem models that aim to understand the dynamics of the Earth System.

Projects could involve techniques such as analyzed field samples from the open ocean, flow cytometry, molecular biology, microbiology, and bioinformatic analysis.

Jeff Tyner, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Not Accepting New Scholars

 Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

My research can be characterized by two primary interests: 1) identification of the genetic lesions and microenvironmental signals underlying cancer pathogenesis, and 2) identification of specific, gene-targeted therapies that can be individually tailored to cancer patients on the basis of these causative oncogenic lesions and signals. Towards this end, my group has developed functional screening strategies, taking advantage of RNAi, small-molecule inhibitor, and CRISPR/Cas sgRNA libraries to interrogate the genes and signaling pathways required for growth and viability of malignant cells. Over the past decade, we have applied these techniques directly to primary cells from hundreds of cancer patients to identify novel targets and drug combinations. In addition, my lab has integrated these functional data with exome and RNA-Seq performed on these same patient samples. Simultaneous application of functional and genomic screens has accelerated our understanding of the genes and pathways that contribute to neoplasia, such that cancer therapy can be individually tailored for each patient. One major finding from this platform has been the discovery of CSF3R mutations as drivers of chronic neutrophilic leukemia (CNL), which has had major implications for the diagnosis of this disease, our understanding of its etiology, and possible new therapeutic options for CNL patients.

randy - not accepting new scholars

Randy Woltjer, MD, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

The Oregon Brain Bank (OBB) is a collection of postmortem brain tissue that is collected from autopsies that are undertaken to establish the exact pathologic diagnosis of brain diseases.  The OBB also promotes brain disease research by providing tissue samples to scientists throughout the country to study in their laboratories.  In addition, research is also undertaken by undergraduate, graduate, and medical students and staff who participate in the collection and evaluation of brain tissue samples using existing and new methods. 

The activities of the lab are focused primarily on age-related brain diseases such as the common dementias of Alzheimer’s disease, Lewy body disease, and mixed or vascular-based dementia.  However, experience has shown that understanding these diseases is tremendously helped by studying non-dementing diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and younger-onset hereditary movement disorders.  All these diseases typically feature protein abnormalities that are diagnostically useful when detected in tissues, but tend to be poorly understood in terms of their damaging effects on the structure and function of the brain.  A major goal of the lab is to discover patterns in these protein abnormalities that suggest hypotheses about how brain diseases originate, spread, and ultimately become fatal.

Jing Xu, PhD

Jing Xu, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples

Applying three-dimensional follicle culture techniques to nonhuman primates, our current studies investigate the action and role of paracrine/autocrine factors, including TGF-ß family members and ovarian steroids, in regulating ovarian follicular development and oocyte maturation. Translational efforts are made on human follicle culture, which may offer a means to enhance fertility preservation options in women, including female cancer patients.

Chemistry, Physics, Engineering, and Environmental Science RLCS

David Burnett PHD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Dr. Burnett joined Portland State in 2020 as part of the Environmental Sensing and Monitoring focus leveraging his background in integrated circuit design and environmental sensing. During his Ph.D. at Berkeley he was an NDSEG fellow and designed crystal-free fully-integrated wireless sensor nodes, particularly focusing on challenges presented when designing crystal-free radios without inductors. His experience before PSU includes technical staff at Sandia National Labs researching sensors for intertidal physical security, teaching electrical engineering at Da Nang University of Technology in Vietnam, and fielding underwater vehicles at McMurdo Station, Antarctica.  He is a Senior Member of the IEEE.

Research Interest and Expertise:

  • RF, analog, and mixed-signal integrated circuit design
  • Crystal-free wireless communication
  • Wireless sensor mote miniaturization
  • Field-deployable sensor systems

Link to Research Archives: Google Scholar

Alida Cantor, PhD

Alida Cantor, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Dr. Cantor's research focuses on human-environment interactions and political ecology. In particular, her work focuses on understanding how we manage our water and other natural resources, and how we could manage resources better. Her work explores questions around environmental policy and law, environmental justice, and social and political dimensions of natural resource management and conflict throughout the Western United States. Her research methods include interviews, surveys, and archival methods.

​​​​​​​Andrea Goforth, PhD

​​​​​​​Andrea Goforth, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

The ability to study biological events on the cellular or molecular levels is important in understanding disease pathology and therapeutic efficacy, and the development of imaging agents targeted to specific biological structures or disease markers can help to elucidate the chemical processes occurring at various stages of treatment or disease. Thus, nanometer sized, inorganic particles with at least one imaging handle are attractive candidates for the study of cellular and sub-cellular processes because they are on the order of the physical dimensions of many biological structures including: DNA, oligonucleotides, and antibodies. They are also attractive candidates for imaging relative to small molecule reagents, due to the collective properties exhibited by a relatively large number of atoms. Research in the Goforth laboratory is directed toward the advancement of the field of bio-nanotechnology by the development of novel, nanometer sized inorganic imaging agents. The primary research efforts are three-fold: 1) optimization of the inorganic core structure for maximal imaging property (e.g., maximal quantum yield and suitable emission characteristics for fluorescence imaging, maximal magnetic moment for magnetic resonance imaging, or maximal X-ray scattering power for computed tomography X-ray imaging), 2) development of surface-tailored inorganic particles for specific targeting and imaging of biological processes, and 3) synthesis of less toxic imaging agents for non-invasive in vivo imaging. Current research efforts are focused on the development of fluorescent silicon nanoparticles and bimodal fluorescent/magnetic nanoparticle systems targeted to the cell surface protein 4 1 integrin, believed to be involved in cell-cell adhesion interactions in the formation of new blood vessels and in cancer metathesis.

melanie

Melanie Fried-Oken, PhD, CCC/Sp
Oregon Health & Science University                                       
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Dr. Fried-Oken is a speech-language pathologist who works on the design of communication technologies, evaluation protocols, treatment strategies for persons with congenital or acquired disabilities who cannot use speech or writing for communication. Currently, with four federally funded grants, her team (www.reknewprojects.org) conducts translational research where new communication technologies are tested by people with complex communication needs in the community. All research projects include people with disabilities on the team; all data collection is conducted in the community.

Elliott Gall

Elliott Gall, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Dr. Gall's research and teaching investigates phenomena in built environments that affect indoor and urban environmental quality. Research and teaching in Dr. Gall's group ultimately seeks to develop new approaches that improve building sustainability through an understanding of the intersection of building energy use, indoor air quality, and occupant well-being. Specific research areas include: i) fundamental laboratory and field studies of indoor air pollutant transport and transformation, ii) air pollution exposure assessment through modeling and personal exposure studies, and iii) evaluation of building technology and design with respect to indoor environmental quality.

Monica Hinds, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research (if desired, not required), working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (lab mates, researchers, collaborators; not patients)

Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death in the United States. The most prevalent causes of cardiovascular disease are atherosclerosis and thrombosis. The Hinds studies both the causes of atherosclerosis and thrombosis, as well as treatment strategies of anti-thrombotic pharmaceuticals and innovative biomaterials.  Atherosclerosis and thrombosis are mediated by the endothelial cells lining the vasculature, which control vascular homeostasis. Failure of the endothelial cells (ECs) to prevent atherosclerosis and thrombosis motivates our interest in studying this cell type. We are particularly interested in manipulating the cytoskeleton of ECs through fluid flow stimulation or micropatterning and studying a rare population of endothelial progenitor cell found in blood called endothelial outgrowth cells (EOCs).  Current biomaterials for cardiovascular applications remain inadequate to meet the rigorous demands of blood contacting devices. Biomaterials must have considerable mechanical integrity to support handling, implantation, and the functional demands of the cardiovascular system, while also integrating with the biology of the surrounding area to prevent thrombus formation and device failure. While tissue-engineered biologics or xenographs have been proposed or used, they remain an expensive and limited alternative. We aim to create devices with artificial or commercialized materials that can incorporate biologically into the native tissue.

Alex Hunt, PhD

Alex Hunt, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Interviewing

The Agile and Adaptive Robotics lab is interested in uncovering mechanisms of how animals achieve agile and adaptive control and applying these discoveries across a variety of fields. By studying and developing models and controllers that mimic the structure and function of animal abilities, we work to discover how the wide range of adaptability that is seen in animal locomotion and movement is achieved. These models and controllers have potentially significant impacts on physical therapy and rehabilitation, to diagnosis and treatment of diseases, to robotic and artificially controlled systems. Many of our projects involve collaboration with researchers at OHSU and the Portland VA.

Current projects in our lab include:
The design of a neural controller that will stabilize a model of an upright human. This model will provide insight into how the human nervous system produces robust, adaptive control of balance, and how different disorders can affect balance control and potentially be corrected.
The development of controllable human-like robotic legs for the purposes of understanding human motor control in balance, walking, and other activities. This project seeks to produce the most accurate model of human legs actuated by artificial muscles to date.

Developing a ‘prosthesis’ capable of assisting people with balance control problems. This device will monitor balance and provide cues to the wearer that will assist in their ability to maintain balance.
Understanding differences in balance control in people with Parkinson’s Disease vs those with a normally operating nervous system. This work involves collecting data of person’s undergoing challenging balance control situations and analyzing the results.

Dirk Iwata-Reuyl, PhD

Dirk Iwata-Reuyl, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Our research addresses diverse aspects of protein function, mechanism, structure, evolution, and design.We employ a multidisciplinary approach that includes enzymology, kinetics, molecular biology, and organic synthesis, and our close collaborations with other research groups allow us to further broaden the scope of our work to include structural biology, computational genomics, genetics, and physiology.

The inspiration for all of our research is post-transcriptional processing of RNA, specifically the phenomena of nucleoside modification in the maturation of transfer and ribosomal RNA. This process results in the generation of a rich mosaic of structurally modified nucleosides, and we're working to discover the biological roles of nucleoside modification, elucidate the biosynthetic pathways responsible for the formation of these fascinating molecules, and understand the biochemistry of the enzymes making up the pathways.

Jun Jiao, PhD

Jun Jiao, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Prof. Jiao’s bioengineering research focuses on building and testing nano-engineered materials to be used as cancer therapeutics. The goal of the project is to build a dendritic-cell based vaccine model. We are investigating the potential usage of alumina nanowire arrays as a miRNA delivery system to dendritic (immune) cells. This includes understanding interaction of biomaterials with cells, delivery efficiency as compared to current transfection methods, and cellular imaging with confocal microscopy.

The multi-disciplinary project is a collaborative effort between PSU and OHSU.

Erik Sanchez

Erik Sanchez
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.
Students will have the opportunity to work with lasers, vacuum systems, electronics and programming in order to assist in developing new forms of microscopes. These microscopes are based on ion, electron or optical designs. In addition, we have a long project working on novel energy forms. This research involves the development of particle and optical detectors in order to calibrate energy production in a novel reactor design.

Steve Reichow, PhD

Steve Reichow, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, animal-based research, working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Research in the Reichow Lab is inspired by the molecular mechanisms driving biology. Our research applies biochemical methods, coupled with high-resolution imaging and structure determination by electron cryo-microscopy (cryoEM) to describe the functional mechanisms of membrane proteins and cell-signaling complexes. We aim to understand membrane protein function, and what goes wrong in disease, by characterizing their mechanisms of action and modes of regulation at the molecular and atomic levels using cryoEM.

We are using cryoEM to describe the functional mechanisms of membrane proteins and cell-signaling complexes. Membrane proteins act as the gatekeepers for the cell, controlling the flow of chemical information across the barrier of a cell membrane. This class of proteins facilitate many complex biological phenomena – from producing the rhythm of our heart beat and transmitting the electro-chemical signals that form our thoughts, to detecting light, sound, touch, as well as our tastes and smells that provide our senses to the world around us. Because of their important biological functions, membrane proteins are among the most heavily targeted class of proteins for fighting disease. 

Amala Soumyanath, PhD and Doris Kretzschmar PhD
BENFRA Botanical Dietary Supplements Research Center
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, working with chemicals, reagents, biological samples or Drosophila melanogaster

The BENFRA Center at OHSU is one of three national Botanical Dietary Supplements Research Centers, funded by the NIH National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) and the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS). This Center investigates Botanicals Enhancing Neurological and Functional Resilience in Aging. The Center’s mission is to scientifically evaluate botanicals currently being sold as dietary supplements that are reputed to improve resilience to age-related changes in cognition, sleep or

mood. Two botanicals, Centella asiatica (gotu kola) and Withania somnifera (ashwagandha) are the focus of the BENFRA Center’s research.  Our goal is to obtain a firm understanding of the biological and chemical properties of these botanicals, to inform the design of future clinical trials. Projects available for EXITO students in Dr Soumyanath’s lab include preparation and chemical analysis  of Centella and ashwagandha extracts and fractions, and the development of methods to measure compounds from ashwagandha in mouse or human plasma. The extracts and fractions may also be tested for neurological activity in the Drosophila melanogaster (fruit fly) model in the laboratory of BENFRA Project Lead Dr Doris Kretzschmar. For more information about the center visit www.ohsu.edu/benfra-bdsrc .

Rajiv Sharma

Rajiv Sharma, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

Students will join a diverse and motivated research team of faculty and student researchers on a study initiated in 2013 and now in its 6th year of data collection. For three years we were funded by the National Institute of Health (NIH) and are currently seeking additional external funding (we currently have limited funding from internal sources). We study access to primary care physicians and how that is changing in the shifting healthcare landscape. We study the effects of different health policies on access at a federal and state level. Students will assist in measuring access to primary care physicians by calling a national random sample of doctors’ offices using a provided script. There is detailed training to ensure accurate and consistent data collection. Students will be exposed to the diverse and complicated healthcare system and to the complexities of healthcare research. Students will learn basic research methods and have the opportunity to work closely with several faculty members within the Department of Economics. 

photo of microchip

Raj Solanki, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Optoelectronic materials and devices. Electronic biosensors for low cost, fast detection of diseases and sensors for detection of heavy metals in water. Energy related projects include development of multivalent batteries as replacements for lithium ion battery and fuel cell technology for green energy generation.

Olyssa Starry, PhD

Olyssa Starry, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research in the Starry Lab investigates cities using a systems approach. Recently, her primary focus has been on urban stormwater management.  Dr. Starry's dissertation investigated the role of plants in the green roof water cycle; she is continuing this work at PSU, refining models that predict green roof performance based on, for example, parameters that influence rates of evapotranspiration. In order to validate this work, she is collaborating with researchers in different US climates to collect and share data on the green roof water cycle.  She is also currently involved in an international project to assess green roof biodiversity.  This project characterizes green roof insects that we collect in pitfall traps; current analysis is mostly limited to beetles, but they are hoping to expand to other orders and locations.  A third major research area of interest asks how different stormwater management strategies can influence the spatial configuration of low impact designs and ultimately ecosystem services provided by these systems. 

tufte

Kristin Tufte, PhD
Portland State University
Not Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Data is powerful. My work and research focuses on the human-centered usage of data and technology. My passion is using data and technology is in service of people, especially those in traditionally under-served communities. 
The effective use of data, especially open data, can help governments make better, more equitable decisions, can improve the transparency of those decisions to help build trust with the community and to provide opportunities for innovation. 
I'm involved in a variety of projects. Our use cases focus on equity, reslience (especially climate change) and safety.

Christof Teuscher

Christof Teuscher, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis

Molecular computing is a promising computational paradigm, in which computational functions are evaluated at the nanoscale, with potential applications in smart molecular diagnostics and therapeutics. However, despite recent advances in the field, prospects for direct application of these techniques to solve real-world problems are limited by the lack of robust interfaces between molecular computers and biological and chemical systems. The goal of this project is to model and simulate new molecular computing systems that are capable of adaptive, bio-inspired behavior, such as dynamic learning and adaptation.

Mark Woods, PhD

Mark Woods, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Working with chemicals, reagents, or biological samples.

Our research focuses on the development, study and use of gadolinium chelates as MRI contrast agents.  We are examining a diverse range of questions, such as: how safe is the use of contrast agents, especially during pregnancy?; how can contrast agents be used to measure the rate of water exchange across cell membranes and what can that tell us about cell proliferation in pathology?; how can biorthogonal chemistry be exploited to radically alter the function of a contrast agent, for example, can we visualize biomarker present below the limit of detection?; how can the chelate be modified to maximize its performance in molecular imaging applications?

Community Health & Social Sciences RLCS

Karlyn Adams-Wiggins, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Across all projects in the Identity in Sociohistorical Context (ISC@PDX) RLC, you will gain experience with sociocultural and sociohistorical psychology theory and methods. This RLC is best equipped to prepare scholars for developmental psychology, human development, educational psychology, and learning sciences doctoral research training, as well as careers related to education and human development. Typical activities for scholars include but are not limited to: qualitative data analysis (interviews, focus groups, videos, open-ended surveys), literature reviews, transcription and/or translation of audio or video recordings, reading key texts to ensure background on sociocultural theory. During data collection phases, activities also include liaising with prospective participants by phone, attending community partner meetings with the PI, conducting interviews face-to-face or via Zoom, and helping facilitate focus groups. Scholars will receive training in each task before being expected to be fully responsible for it.

Project 1: How do experiences with exclusion in small group collaborative learning inform early adolescent learners' identity in science? Dr. Adams-Wiggins examines small group interactions as a catalyst for identity processes in 7th grade science classrooms where inquiry-based science curricula are being implemented. This project involves qualitative analysis of classroom video and interviews, but may also include contributions to related research on motivation using achievement goal theory in similar 7th grade science classrooms. See Adams-Wiggins, 2020 or Adams-Wiggins, Myers, and Dancis, 2020 for example.

Project 2: How do sociohistorical and sociopolitical contexts inform how Black/African diaspora adolescents and early adults come to understand themselves and their relationship with the world? Dr. Adams-Wiggins conceptualizes identity as socially constructed and rooted in interpersonal interactions; regional history, regional politics, and the broader historical and political context of the USA are expected to play important roles.This project involves primarily qualitative analysis of interview and focus group data, but may also involve field work conducting interviews, facilitating focus groups, or developing participatory action research (PAR) projects. Perspectives from critical psychology and cultural-historical psychology are central to this project. See Adams-Wiggins and Taylor-Garcia, 2020 or request Adams-Wiggins, in press for example.

Project 3: What cultural resources and developmental assets do families use to prepare their pre-K children for kindergarten? Dr. Adams-Wiggins examines families’ navigation of the public education system and interactions with school professionals as a contributor to the positive development of Black and Latinx children. This project involves primarily qualitative analysis of interview and focus group data, but may also involve field work conducting interviews, facilitating focus groups, or developing participatory action research (PAR) projects. See Adams-Wiggins and El-Moslimany, 2020 for example.

 

Antonia Alvarez, LMSW, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Using arts and culture-based interventions, her work emphasizes healing and protection from suicidality. Antonia received her MSW from the University of Michigan School of Social Work and is a licensed social worker in Hawai`i. She has more than 12-years post-MSW experience working with communities, organizations and groups, and more than 20 years of facilitation and experiential education experience. She is a GLSEN-certified facilitator and a trained joker in the Theatre of the Oppressed.

 

Jennifer Blakeslee, PhD, M.P.H., MSW
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, survey administration, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects).

All of the research projects connected to this RLC are related to services to improve outcomes for youth in foster care, especially related to mental health and substance use, social development, and overall well-being. Current projects involve: youth support network mapping and analysis; analysis of focus group data about enhancing youth support networks; analysis of outcome data from a randomized control trial of an intensive mentoring program for foster youth; and activities connected to real-world evaluation with community-based service providers. This RLC would be appropriate for an EXITO Scholar interested in social work research in general, the child welfare/foster care system, or related social service systems (such as mental health treatment or juvenile justice) that serve youth in ways that are expected to impact youth health and development. This RLC is part of the consortium of Social Determinants of Health RLCs housed in the School of Social Work. 

​​​​​​​Raina Croff, PhD

Raina Croff, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Meeting participants in the community to assist with the walking project, creating walking routes using our computer program, assisting on focus group and qualitative data collection and data organizing, doing skype chats with participants for our social engagement component, helping us build the online health modules

The Sharing History through Active Reminiscence and Photo-imagery (SHARP) Pilot Program aims to increase social engagement and physical exercise in African Americans aged 55 and over in Portland, Oregon.  Participants walk one mile routes three times a week in Portland's historically Black neighborhoods and view historic neighborhood images to prompt conversation about their experiences living and working in the area  from the 1940s to 2010. Narratives are digitally recorded and will be used to engage the wider African American community in learning sessions about the importance of cognitive health and memory health as we age.  Students will gain understanding about building historical awareness and cultural relevance into minority health interventions; the value and methods of qualitative research, particularly through focus groups; the challenges of working with older populations, particularly around health-related technology; how to elicit personal health and history narratives; and how to integrate neighborhood setting and social engagement into cognitive health interventions for older populations.

photo of INSP team

Blaire Darney, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars
 
Research Activities:  Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects) , Working on the computer, Data analysis, Survey administration
 
Projects currently underway assess access to and utilization of reproductive health services, adolescent pregnancy, and maternal health in Mexico and the US. There are opportunities for students to work closely with researchers on literature review, data analysis, creating tables and graphics, and learning about the research process from development of a hypothesis to writing for publication. Current scholars are involved in research in collaboration with the Mexican Consulate of Portland focused on reproductive health and Latino/a access to healthcare. Student’s role in research will include working closely with a team member on a study; literature review to support research; contributing to manuscripts (as co-author if contributions warrant); using English skills to support Mexico team members; learning all phases of research process; learning cross-cultural collaboration skills; working with clinical sites to collect data; data analysis, participating in team meeting with Mexico research group, depending on interest.

davis not accepting new scholars

Melinda Davis, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University 
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, working with the community, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people.

Melinda Davis, PhD, is the Director of Community Engaged Research for the Oregon Rural Practice-based Research Network and co-lead of the Community Health Advocacy and Research Alliance. Dr. Davis is a national leader in the emerging field of participatory implementation science. Her lab works with patients, primary care practices, and health systems to address cancer disparities in rural and vulnerable populations. Current research initiatives focus on partnering with Oregon’s Coordinated Care Organizations (CCOs), rural primary care clinics, and patient/community stakeholders to increase
screening for colorectal cancer and the provision of evidence-based interventions for smoking cessation.
Scholars interested in medical careers and understanding the full spectrum of social ecological factors
(e.g. individual, organizational, community, political) on health and health care are encouraged to apply
for competitive positions in the Davis lab.

Exceptional candidates will display self-motivation, attention to detail, and systems thinking. Applicants
that display intellectual and emotional intelligence as well as the ability to work independently and on
an interdisciplinary team are encouraged to apply. Based on performance, EXITO scholars can expect
opportunities to engage in the full spectrum of research activities – from study conceptualization, to
data collection/implementation, to dissemination for regional and national audiences. Current
opportunities relate to: colorectal cancer screening, tobacco cessation, practice facilitation, and working
with rural/vulnerable populations.

Amy Donaldson, PhD

Amy Donaldson, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Survey administration, Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects) 

The Autism and Social Communication Laboratory (ASCL) in the Department of Speech & Hearing Sciences is committed to conducting clinical research to investigate the use of communication within social contexts and the influence of context on performance.  Our research focuses on examination of social communication and relationships.  We are particularly interested in social interaction and reciprocity, as well as intervention efficacy and pre- and post-professional development from a neurodiversity perspective.  To this end, we partner with the autistic community and colleagues across disciplines to examine the nature of social interactions and how individuals impact communication and engagement.  Student researchers are active participants in ASCL projects and have the opportunity to learn and contribute in many ways. They are involved in all aspects of research from ideation to dissemination and can develop skills in the following areas: literature search and review, grant development, transcription, observational coding of social communication behaviors, working directly with community partners, interviewing, data coding and analysis, and dissemination through poster and paper presentations. 

Tessa Dover, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Our lab’s research investigates the psychological, biological, and behavioral effects of group-based fairness and unfairness. Specifically, we investigate how members of advantaged and disadvantaged groups behave in unequal social systems, and the ways in which these unequal social systems shape health and well-being. Specific lines of research include:

  • How discrimination and beliefs about fairness influence the psychological and biological resiliency of those disadvantaged by unequal social systems.
  • The positive and unintended negative consequences of organizational diversity initiatives for under-represented groups.
  • The subtle strategies that members of advantaged groups use to avoid the discomfort of acknowledging their own privilege.

Our research utilizes several methodologies, including laboratory experiments, daily diary studies, and experimental work in applied legal and organizational settings. In the lab, we assesses an array of psychophysiological outcomes including cardiovascular, immunological, and hormonal functioning. 

 

Alex Foster, M.D., MPH

Alex Foster, M.D., MPH
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, Survey Administration, working with the community, Data analysis, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

Alex Foster, MD, MPH is an academic pediatrician at Oregon Health &amp; Science University. His research works to identify community-based solutions to address childhood obesity. He works clinically at Doernbecher Children’s Hospital and conducts the majority of his research in the community. Currently, Dr. Foster has a K23 award from the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases to examine the approach of positive deviance in developing an intervention for treating early childhood obesity in Latino populations. The largest current project is a randomized clinical trial of peer mentors
among a low-income, Latino population using a family-centered behavioral intervention. We are actively
recruiting English and Spanish-speaking parent-child pairs to participate in the study that is expected to
last through 2019. Additional aspects of this study include examining the dynamics of peer mentors, the
mediating role of allostatic load, and building resilience among families.

Melissa Haeffner, PhD

Melissa Haeffner, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Dr. Haeffner's research unifies several domains that contribute to the knowledge of local politics in watersheds and how they shape urban water infrastructure development in the past, in the present, and under future predictions. Her ongoing research and teaching commitments investigate water insecurity and justice within municipal water systems and the links between multi-scale policies, infrastructural and environmental conditions, and household behavior. Her work focuses on "just water" and how social, political, and biophysical factors structure access to water, using the concept of environmental justice to draw attention to issues of fairness and equality in the ways different social groups gain access to natural resources. 

Emily Henkle, PhD, MPH

Emily Henkle, PhD, MPH
Oregon Health & Science University
Additional RLC Leaders: Kevin Winthrop, MD, MPH and Luke Strnad, MD
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Work on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

My work has focused on understanding the epidemiology and natural history of chronic nontuberculous mycobacterial (NTM) infection and bronchiectasis, an inflammatory airway disease. We have taken a patient-centered approach to many of our projects, including patient stakeholders in study design and identification of research priorities. I have a current grant from the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute to design/evaluate patient-reported outcome measures of health-related quality of life during antibiotic treatment for NTM. Data for these and other analyses come from our own multi-site clinical trials and data repositories, U.S. Medicare data, and national and international registries. We have a large actively enrolling NTM biobank to look for biomarkers for disease progression and treatment response. A new area of collaboration is sickle cell disease, a rare blood disorder. The first steps include building OHSU’s capacity to participate in a sickle cell registry, identifying and engaging stakeholders, and improving access to quality care as patients transition from pediatric to adult clinics. The RLC may include Dr. Kevin Winthrop and Dr. Luke Strnad, depending on clinical research interests.

Student role: If you want to work with data or better understand clinical research come join us! Students will be able to work on recruitment and enrollment in the biobank, chart review and survey administration, descriptive analysis of population data, and other support for research studies. We have many opportunities for collaboration on conference abstracts and presentations and associated manuscripts.

 

Willi Horner-Johnson, PhD

Willi Horner-Johnson, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people. 

Dr. Horner-Johnson is the PhD Director for the Oregon Office on Disability Health.  The Oregon Office on Disability and Health (OODH) works to improve the health and quality of life of Oregonians living with disabilities through targeted health promotion programs, improved overall community access, and disability awareness and inclusion training. We use population-based survey data and administrative data to identify and track health status, health risks, and health care utilization of individuals with disabilities in Oregon. We also collect our own data as needed to inform our activities and to evaluate our programs.

We have opportunities for one or two EXITO students to work with us on one or more of the following projects:

Analyzing data from a series of six Disability and Health Listening Sessions that we conducted throughout Oregon for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and their service providers
Working with an IDD self-advocacy organization to pilot test and evaluate their Taking Charge of My Health Care guide for conducting workshops for their peers on how to best advocate for their health and health care
Analyzing state and national data on contraception use, pregnancies, and pregnancy outcomes among women with disabilities
We envision EXITO students working directly with our staff to: 1) analyze existing data; 2) develop evaluation surveys and collect and analyze program evaluation data for the Taking Charge of My Health Care workshops; and 3) participate in writing reports and developing presentations summarizing the findings. We anticipate that there will be at least one opportunity for the student(s) to present findings at a conference or community meeting.

Ericka Kimball, PhD, M.P.H., MSN
Portland State University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

Dr. Kimball's research is focused on the life-long effects of exposure to domestic violence in childhood. She uses mixed methods research to explore and expand the understanding of domestic violence. Current research projects include the integrated care in health care settings, fathers experiences of domestic violence in childhood and parenting, and procedural justice for cultural and linguistic minority populations. These studies are mixed methods or qualitative in nature with a focus on applied research to help inform resource and program development.  Student researchers are an active members of the research team with the opportunity to participate in multiple areas and develop skills in the following areas: literature search and review, Atlas.ti and/or SPSS data analysis software, data analysis, working with the community partners, Interviewing, talking to or communicating with study participants, and dissemination activities such as poster presentations and manuscript development. This research learning community is a part of the Social Determinants of Health Initiative Consortium.

Allison Lindauer, PhD

Allison Lindauer, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

The Layton Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease Center is one of 30 NIAfunded Alzheimer’s research centers in the nation. We conduct research pertaining to healthy aging, dementia diagnosis and treatment, and caregiver support. My research focuses on using technology to support caregivers. EXITO Scholars will work directly with me to design and develop a literature review (an essential component to any research project), recruit study participants for caregiver research, and enter and assess research data. They will learn about the telehealth research andhow to support families living with Alzheimer’s disease. Scholars will have a chance to be a co-author on a review paper and present findings at a regional or national conference.  The Scholar will be an integral member of the research team, and if they so desire, may partake in other activities, such as qualitative data analysis and IRB protocol development. This opportunity will be an excellent learning experience and will provide a strong foundation for any future researcher.

Eric Mankowski, PhD

Eric Mankowski, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

Eric Mankowski (Ph.D., University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) is a community and social psychologist, broadly interested in the relationship between individual, group, and community functioning, especially in area of mental health. In particular, he focuses on understanding how masculinity is socially constructed and its connection to violence, substance abuse and other health and social problems.

Lisa Marriott, PhD

Lisa Marriott, PhD
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people, working with the community, learning qualitative data analysis

This lab focuses on educational research and public health.  Learn more about the lab: https://sites.google.com/view/marriott-lab/home

1) START Development -- Building and testing an informatics tool for measuring student development in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math).  Our lab is funded by the National Institutes of Health to develop a tool for measuring STEM development of students (https://reporter.nih.gov/search/LaIdzwuxpEamMAR7P83zFQ/project-details/10000205).  In the coming year, we are doing focus groups to develop e-feedback for its modules, generating reports for presenting statistical comparisons across student populations, and starting to work with teachers on user needs for the tool.  This public-facing work integrates science education and research.  Scholars will help with the above items (qualitative and quantitative experience) and will learn about research ethics (IRB processes) for managing data and sharing permissions.  Our project will link with statewide data sources, so scholars will learn about merging datasets to answer specific research questions. Scholars will get experience in developing public-facing materials for a website.

2) Knight Scholars Program – Educational research on how to support cancer research training for high school students (https://reporter.nih.gov/search/FD7tf-gC5kW6SfzY-EXy9w/project-details/10003014). Scholars will statistically analyze data to understand what is working for specific sub-populations of students. Scholars will also be able to help plan and develop training programs for students in the program.  This project is great for a scholar who wants to learn about program evaluation and development of training programs in biomedical research.  Scholars will get experience in designing public and private website materials, statistical analysis, and how to design tailored approaches for working with students.

3)  Community health using Let’s Get Healthy! – Not accepting students to work with this project right now, but know that this is another area of our work.  The Let’s Get Healthy! program uses a web-based health information technology platform to assess individual health and provide immediate e-feedback about health results. Scholars in the past have helped to develop health modules for Let’s Get Healthy!, including its e-feedback and community-level reports that become automated to report change over time to communities and worksites. Let’s Get Healthy! is currently being used in the United States and in Thailand.  Current work is building data visualization platforms.

Larry Martinez, PhD

Larry Martinez, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Dr. Martinez's work is focused on inclusion, diversity, stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination in the workplace. In particular, his work has focused on the experiences of traditionally under-represented employees including cancer survivors, transgender individuals, individuals with disabilities, and sexual orientation minorities. Dr. Martinez uses multiple methodologies to examine these experiences including surveys; lab and field experiments; and interviews, focus groups, and other qualitative techniques. Dr. Martinez is particularly excited about new work focused on engaging non-stigmatized "ally" employees in diversity initiatives.

Megann McGill

Megann McGill, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis

The PSU Stuttering Lab investigates theoretical and practical topics related to stuttering across the lifespan. Specifically, our research is focused on: 1) investigating the use of telepractice for delivery of monolingual and bilingual speech-language pathology services and 2) exploring novel methods for reducing the stigma associated with stuttering. Projects related to telepractice include exploring the reliability and validity of using telepractice to assess stuttering. Projects related to best practices for assessment and treatment of persons who stutter currently include examining the use of self-disclosure statements and investigating the implementation of stigma reduction techniques in treatment by speech-language pathologists.

Lakindra Mitchell Dove, PhD, MSW
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Lakindra has over 15 years post-MSW practice experience, working primarily with children and families. She spent the last decade working as a medical social worker, specializing in child abuse and neglect. She also has experience in community-based mental health, child welfare, health care, and research and evaluation. Her scholarship is focused on the cultural needs of African American children and adolescents and racial/ethnic identity development. Her specific research interests include children’s mental health, racial equity and social justice, child abuse and neglect, and culturally responsive research methodologies.

 

Christina Nicolaidis, M.D., M.P.H.

Christina Nicolaidis, M.D., M.P.H.
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Scholar Activities: Working on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

Dr. Nicolaidis uses community-based participatory research (CBPR) to improve the health and healthcare of marginalized populations. She co-directs the Academic Autism Spectrum Partnership in Research and Education (AASPIRE), a long-standing research partnership with autistic adults. The Exito Scholar would primarily be involved with a new, large NIH-funded project to create a set of patient-centered outcome measures to be used in studies that evaluate services for autistic adults. We will work with autistic adults, service providers, and other researchers to decide what outcomes are most important to measure and then we will collaboratively adapt existing survey instruments to be more accessible to autistic adults. The Exito Scholar will also be involved in other AASPIRE projects. For example, we recently finished a series of studies about healthcare for autistic adults, but there is still lots of work to be done analyzing data and writing papers.

o'brien - not accepting new scholars

Kerth O'Brien, PhD
Portland State University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Scholar Activities:  Working on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects) 

Social psychologist Kerth O'Brien conducts research on social psychological aspects of healthcare situations, such as perceived discrimination as a social stressor in healthcare. She takes a social determinants of health perspective and uses multiple methods (e.g., quantitative methods, focus group methods, in-depth interviews) to address applied research questions. Undergraduate lab members will work on a computer with Zotero bibliographic software. This will also mean working with journal articles, and so, scholars can expect to encounter published social science literature on the research topics of this lab. Lab members will also work on a computer to read and summarize research articles, including articles for discussion at lab group meetings.

Oregon Healthy Workforce Center team

Oregon Healthy Workforce Center 
Oregon Health & Science University
Accepting New Scholars

Scholar Activities:  Working on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, working with chemicals, reagents and, or biological samples, and Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people.

The Oregon Healthy Workforce Center (OHWC) was funded in September 2011 as a NIOSH Total Worker Health Center of Excellence. OHWC faculty and staff come from various backgrounds and expertise in occupational health psychology, industrial-organizational psychology, industrial hygiene, physiology, public health, communications, and engineering. The mission of the Oregon Healthy Workforce Center is to improve the well-being of workers through Total Worker Health research, dissemination, outreach, and, education. Specifically, we design, develop, and evaluate the effectiveness of integrated programs that jointly address work-specific factors such as hazard reduction and work redesign along with employee-specific issues like chronic illness prevention and health improvement. We put our mission into action through:

  • Effectiveness research
  • Dissemination of evidence-based programs
  • Active interdisciplinary collaboration with partner organizations on research, outreach, and education
Roberto Orellana, PhD, M.P.H., MSN

Roberto Orellana, PhD, M.P.H., MSN
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities: Working on the computer, data analysis, survey administration, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects).

We conduct research and evaluation on the fields of mental health and substance abuse. Currently we are engaged in the following studies/projects:

  • HIV and drug use prevention among homeless youth
  • Prescription drug overdose prevention in Oregon
  • Suicide prevention among youth in Oregon
  • Global health: HIV and drug use among migrant populations in the Mexico/Guatemala border (field work completed. Opportunities for data analysis exist).
Mary Oschwald, PhD

Mary Oschwald, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis, Survey administration, Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

Our Lives: Safe and Strong Program provides access to a web-based gender specific abuse awareness tools – one for women, one for me – that is available at community centers that support adults with disabilities. The Our Lives Program provides information about abuse and works with agency staff who support people with disabilities who view the web-based abuse-awareness tools. Support is provided to the adults using a trauma-informed approach.  We are working with six different community centers located all over the United States. We provide training and support to their staff so they can best support people with disabilities in their own communities.   Our community partners are: Northern West Virginia Center for Independent Living (NWVCIL); Prairie Independent Living Resource Center (PILR) of Hutchinson, KS; REACH Center for Independent Living of Plano, TX; Disability Network Wayne County/ Detroit; Eastern Oregon Centers for Independent Living (EOCIL) of Ontario, OR; and, Living Independently in Northwest Kansas (LINK) of Hays, KS. 

Perry - Not accepting new scholars

Cynthia Perry, PhD, FNP-BC
Oregon Health & Science University
Not Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, working with the community, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

This lab focuses on nursing research and students could be involved in three research projects.  One is a community-based participatory research project working with a rural Latino community to adapt an evidence-based exercise and nutrition program and then test the effectiveness of the adapted program. Another is focused on working with community members and grantees of the Knight Community Partnership Program to understand how to identify,   adapt to local community situation, and evaluate evidence-based health promotion programs within their communities.  The third is focused on collecting data (both qualitative and quantitative)  to inform an implementation of an exercise program for breast cancer survivors within an academic health center.

Dora Raymaker, PhD

Dora Raymaker, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars  

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects)

Dr. Raymaker's RLC conducts community-based participatory research with disability communities. The lab develops and tests real-world social service programs to improve community health and wellbeing and reduce stigma. As a multidisciplinary lab, we can tailor the experience to meet a Scholar’s specific interests or goals. Our current projects are 1) developing a program to improve employment outcomes for autistic professionals, 2) adapting and testing health outcome measures for autistic adults, 3) completing an oral history of our lab and putting together a toolkit for others about community-based participatory research. Possible projects for Scholars could be data cleaning and statistical analysis, qualitative analysis, quantitative or qualitative data collection, working on aspects of scientific papers, video scripting and editing (using Adobe CC), providing direct support to community partners, and working on our website (Wordpress). Scholars will learn about and participate directly in human subjects and mixed-methods research using a community-based participatory approach. This is a good RLC for people interested in public health, social work, or systems science, or in collaborating with underserved and minority communities in research, especially Autistic and other neurodivergent communities. Learn more our lab at aaspire.org.

Dara Shifrer, PhD

Dara Shifrer, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities:  Working on the computer, Data analysis

This RLC is more broadly focused on how inequality outside of schools interacts with processes inside schools to shape educational outcomes. This RLC’s current main research focus is on increasing the participation of racial minorities, persons with disabilities, and persons with low socioeconomic status (SES) in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. Improving the STEM skills of our youth is important for the US’s innovation, economic growth, and national security. A diverse STEM workforce will increase creativity, decrease inequality, and strengthen social consensus. This project will use data on over 23,000 9th graders from the nationally representative High School Longitudinal Study of 2009 to answer these questions: 1) How do 9th graders’ STEM potential and STEM learning environments vary at the intersection of race, SES, and disability status? 2) Which student, classroom, and school characteristics contribute the most to disparities by race, SES, and disability status in STEM outcomes? 3) Which classroom and school characteristics improve STEM outcomes for students who began high school with similar levels of STEM potential? This RLC would be appropriate for an EXITO Scholar interested in quantitative data analysis, research design, education, and/or sociology.

Erin E. Shortlidge, PhD

Erin E. Shortlidge, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting New Scholars

Dr. Shortlidge's research interests are aimed at identifying and assessing the value of integrating novel pedagogical strategies into university level biology classrooms. These strategies include classroom based research experiences, student centered active learning  modules, and other methods predicted to increase student retention and success over traditional lecture driven content delivery. The assessment of these pedagogies may also provide some insight into addressing the unique challenges facing traditionally underrepresented students in biology education.

Martin Swobodzinski, PhD

Martin Swobodzinski, PhD
Portland State University 
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Survey administration, Data analysis, Working with the community, Interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people (study subjects).

In his research, Dr. Swobodzinski investigates the ways in which technology informs the reasoning and behavior of individual human beings. Dr. Swobodzinski comes from an applied computer science background and often grounds his work in spatial cognition, an interdisciplinary field of research concerned with the interaction of spatial knowledge and human decision making. Dr. Swobodzinski subscribes to the scientific method, with his work often being driven by empirical data collection and analysis. His research agenda currently revolves around experimentation on virtual-reality technology and human emotion and the study of electronic aids in the context of human wayfinding and visual impairment. EXITO Scholars joining Dr. Swobodzinski's research group may gain experience and skills related to communicating with study participants, the development and administration of experimental protocols, conducting collaborative research, literature reviews, statistical and/or spatial data analysis, the preparation of grants, and the dissemination of research findings. 

Carolyn Quam, PhD

Carolyn Quam, PhD
Portland State University 
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis

Carolyn Quam, Ph.D., joined the SPHR Faculty in Fall 2016 as an Assistant Professor.  At PSU, she runs a research lab, the Child Language Learning Center (CLLC) and teaches Speech and Language Development.

Dr. Quam earned her Ph.D. in Psychology from the University Pennsylvania in 2010 with a child language and psycholinguistics focus.  She then completed postdoctoral work at UC San Diego and the University of Arizona.  Dr. Quam's research interests include language acquisition in typically developing children and those with Specific Language Impairment; bilingualism; adult second-language learning; and the memory and learning systems that support language.  Dr. Quam's research utilizes eye-tracking and other behavioral methodologies.

Kerri Winters-Stone, PhD

Kerri Winters-Stone, PhD
Oregon Health and Science University
Accepting new Scholars 

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, working with the community, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Dr. Winters-Stone works with cancer survivors to understand what health challenges that they face after cancer treatment and how exercise might be used to restore the quality of life, avoid disability and other diseases, and reduce the risk of cancer recurrence. She also oversees a large community grants program and applies dissemination and implementation science to understand how communities can use evidence-based approaches to address their most pressing health issues, like cancer. 

Heyeoung Woo, PhD

Heyeoung Woo, PhD
Portland State University
Accepting new Scholars 

Research Activities: Working on the computer, Data analysis

Dr. Woo is interested in social determinants of health. Using information from a large survey data set, she looks at social attainments and family behaviors and examines how these social relations influence individual’s health and well-being, and whether or not and how the association between social relations and health varies across social groups. Currently, her projects focus on: (1) gender disparities in health across countries; and (2) marital status and its association to college completion among young adults in the US; and (3) the influence of parent’s marital status on children’s well-being in Korea

Katharine Zuckerman, M.D., F.A.A.P.

Katharine Zuckerman, M.D., F.A.A.P.
Oregon Health & Science University
Additional RLC Leaders: Louise Vaz, M.D., M.P.H.; Ben Sanders, M.D., M.S.P.H., M.S.
Accepting New Scholars

Research Activities: Working on the computer, survey administration, data analysis, working with the community, interviewing, talking to, or communicating with people

Our research focuses on health care disparities and access to care for children with chronic health conditions.  The goal of our research is to ensure that all children, and particularly children from disadvantaged settings, can access quality inpatient and outpatient pediatric care.  Dr. Zuckerman's areas of focus include: disparities in autism and developmental disabilities, Latino health, access to child development technologies.  Dr. Vaz focuses on social vulnerability risk factors and adverse events after hospitalization in children. Dr. Sanders focuses on digital health and informatics solutions to improve access to child development services.  Our research involves community-based intervention, quality improvement techniques, survey research, qualitative techniques, and large-scale secondary data analysis.  Students contribute to all phases of research including helping to design studies, conducting background research, designing scales and interventions, collecting data, assisting with data analysis, presenting data at local and national conferences, and authoring manuscripts.   Our lab has participated in EXITO since Cohort 1, and we work hard to support our students’ professional goals.  We students from all racial/ethnic, sexual/gender orientation, and disability backgrounds to participate in our diverse learning community.