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Project L/EARN News and Events

Project L/EARN 25th Anniversary Conference info
The Project L/EARN 25th Anniversary Conference is a chance to showcase and celebrate the accomplishments of our nearly 200 alumni at panel presentations and poster sessions. The conference will be held from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm on Monday, May 23, 2016 in the Clinical Academic Building, 125 Paterson Street in downtown New Brunswick.

New: To give everyone a chance to relax and chat after an invigorating day, we’ll be holding a reception at the Institute for Health Care Policy and Aging Research (112 Paterson Street) from 4:30 to 6:00 pm.

Agenda

Information for poster presenters

Poster templates

postertemplate w instructions
PosterTemplate B
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Posters you want us to print for you to pick up at the conference are due Monday, May 16 Email your proofread poster as a PPT file to: Plearn-info@ifh.rutgers.edu


Driving directions and parking instructions

Questions: Contact us at Email: Plearn-info@ifh.rutgers.edu
Voicemail: (848) 932-1876 Prior to event
Voicemail: (848) 932-8415 Day of event
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Research Internships Video Project L/Earn


Article on Project L/EARN mentoring - thoughts from interns and mentors
October 2014
In this post, interns and mentors share their insights on the value of mentoring in general, and on Project L/EARN in particular.

Theresa Yera receives 2014 Guarnaccia Award
August 2014
The 2014 Project L/EARN “Intern of the Year” Award was given to Theresa Yera, an anthropology major and pharmacology and toxicology minor at the University of Buffalo. Ms. Yera worked under the guidance of faculty mentors Dr. Emily Greenfield and Dr. Jane Miller to write a paper about “Does Experience with Caregiving, Informal Helping, and Family Health Predict Who Volunteers in Healthcare?” After completing her bachelor's degree, Ms. Yera plans to apply for doctoral programs in sociology or anthropology.

Two Project L/EARN mentors honored for services to the program
August 2014
Project L/EARN presented service awards to two faculty mentors for their longstanding contributions and dedication, providing quality mentoring and research experiences to help prepare the next generation of health researchers.

Project L/EARN Alum and Baltimore Native David Fakunle Vows to Help Urban Youth
July 2014
David Fakunle grew up in the massive shadow of Johns Hopkins’ sprawling East Baltimore campus. He knew that he wanted to focus on the criminological aspect of society, specifically why people “graduate” to criminal behavior. A colleague suggested that he talk to Deborah Furr-Holden, PhD, associate professor in Mental Health Johns Hopkins University. After one meeting, he knew that public health was his calling, and vowed to apply what he learned to help prevent the transition to criminal behavior among youths in his hometown.

Project L/EARN alum named to inaugural cohort of Woodrow Wilson New Jersey Teaching Fellows
June 2014
A-Nam Nguyen, Project L/EARN class of 2013, was selected to be a member of the first New Jersey cohort of Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellows. The Fellows receive a stipend to complete a specially-designed training program at The College of New Jersey, Montclair State, Rowan, Rutgers-Camden, and then commit to teach for three years in New Jersey schools from districts in need of science or mathematics teachers. A cell biology and neuroscience major at Rutgers, Ms. Nguyen worked in a cancer research lab as a senior. Her Project L/EARN paper under the guidance of mentor Dr. Sharon Bzostek investigated Differences in Child’s Self-Rated Health by Race/Ethnicity.

Project L/EARN alumnus Mike Alvarez awarded Soros Fellowship
April 2014
Project L/EARN alum Mike Alvarez (cohort of 2005) was awarded a Soros Fellowship for New Americans are granted to doctoral students who are committed to addressing critical social needs, will advance his interests in mental health issues through graduate study at the University of Massachusetts. In Project L/EARN, he worked under the guidance of faculty mentor Dr. Kathleen Pottick on a project titled “Correlates of Medication Use among Transition-Age Patients with Severe Emotional Disturbances in Outpatient Care Settings.”

Project L/EARN alumna Aneesah McClinton selected as Humanism Scholar
Aneesah McClinton (L/EARN 2010) was selected to be a Humanism Scholar at the Rutgers New Jersey Medical School (NJMS), where she is in the class of 2016, pursuing an MD/MPH degree. Humanism scholars are affiliated with the Center for Humanism and Medicine at NJMS, which aims to create a network of caring physicians through ethics training, research and community service projects. Hear Aneesah talk about the Humanism Scholars program here . In Project L/EARN, Aneesah worked with faculty mentor Dr. Shawna Hudson at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey on a project about "Treating Diabetes and the Use of Health Models."

Project L/EARN alumna Annik Sorhaindo produces evidence base for health policy
April 2014
Annik Sorhaindo, MSc., a senior program researcher with the Population Council’s Reproductive Health Program in Mexico, conducts research to provide the evidence base to inform health policy. Ms. Sorhaindo is a 1997 alumna of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation-funded Project L/EARN training program. She has overseen research internships for several recent L/EARN alumni.

Project L/EARN alumna Dr. Nicole Jarrett works to reduce recidivism through support and treatment
March 2014
Nicole Jarrett, PhD, a senior policy analyst with the Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center studies adults with behavioral health needs in the criminal just corrections system to identify strategies for reducing recidivism and promoting recovery. Dr. Jarrett is a 1994 graduate of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF)-funded Project L/EARN research training program. Read this profile from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s newsroom.

Project L/EARN alumna Dr. Zupenda Davis wins award for AIDS prevention work
December 2013
Zupenda Davis, MPH, DrPH, was recently awarded the Red Ribbon Community Leader Award from the Community Advisory Board of the University of Pennsylvania’s Penn Center for AIDS Research. She was honored for her leadership in HIV/AIDS education and advocacy. Read about her work in this article from the Philadelphia Tribune. Dr. Davis is a 1994 graduate of the Project L/EARN research training program. She is an assistant professor and director of the bachelor of science of public health program at La Salle University.

L/EARN alumnus David Fakunle (cohort of 2008) participated in the Robert Wood Johnson Foundations interview project on "A Culture of Health."
June 2013
As an undergraduate at the University of Maryland, Mr. Fakunle was referred to Project L/EARN by Dr. Yamalis Diaz (L/EARN cohort of 1999), who was his psychology course instructor there. In L/EARN, he conducted an analysis of how tobacco outlet density related to neighborhood demographic composition, working under the supervision of faculty mentor Dr. N. Andrew Peterson of the Rutgers School of Social Work. Mr. Fakunle recently entered the PhD program in Drug Dependency and Epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, the first black male participant in the over 20-year history of that program. His doctoral study is supported by full funding from the National Institute of Drug Abuse.

Lorena Garcia receives 2013 Guarnaccia Award
August 2013
The 2013 Peter J. Guarnaccia “Project L/EARN Intern of the Year” Award goes to Lorena Garcia, an Applied Kinesiology major at Rutgers University. Ms. Garcia worked under the guidance of faculty mentor Dr. Susan Brownlee of the Center for State Health Policy to write a paper about “Physician Rejection of Health Insurance by Insurance Type and Patient Characteristics.” She is applying to physical therapy doctoral programs for next fall.

Project L/EARN Alumna States that the Program Spurred her to Pursue an Advanced Nursing Degree
June 2013
Imani Baker, a member of the Project L/EARN cohort of 2012, describes her journey through the summer training program as “life changing.” Working with Dr. Lucas and Project L/EARN, she learned that the field needs more nurses “crunching numbers,” reading scientific literature, and learning and understanding the language of statistics so they can contribute to the evidence base that informs nursing practice. Ms. Baker graduated from Rutgers in May 2013 with a B.S. in public health, and recently began her studies in the BSN-to-MSN program at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.

Imani Baker receives 2012 Guarnaccia Award
August 2012
The 2012 Project L/EARN “Intern of the Year” Award was given to Imani Baker, a public health and pre-nursing major at Rutgers University. Ms. Baker worked under the guidance of faculty mentor Dr. Judith Lucas to write a paper about “The Association between Nursing Home Culture Change and Quality Indicators: Deficiency Citations and Antipsychotic Medication Use.” She is applying to BSN/MSN programs for next fall.

2012 Project L/EARN interns on the RWJF Human Capital Blog -1
2012 Project L/EARN interns on the RWJF Human Capital Blog -2
2012 Project L/EARN interns on the RWJF Human Capital Blog -3
August 2012
Members of the 2012 Project L/EARN cohort discuss their experiences with the program on the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Human Capital Blog.

Faculty Director interviewed about Project L/EARN
July 2012
Faculty Director Professor Jane Miller answers questions about what makes Project L/EARN unique, the origin of its name, and other questions.

2011 Project L/EARN intern earns research award at the National Institute of Science conference
March 2012
Kimele Gray (L/EARN 2011) received a research award at the 69th Annual Joint Meeting of the National Institute of Science – Beta Kappa Chi conference, hosted by Tennessee State University and Fisk University in Nashville.

Faculty Chat: Prof. Dawne Mouzon on the race paradox
December 2011
Faculty Chat: Prof. Dawne Mouzon on the race paradox in mental health Newly hired as an Assistant Professor at the E.J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers, Dawne Mouzon (L/EARN 1998, Ph.D., Rutgers 2010) discusses her research on the race paradox in mental health.

Project L/EARN alumna Danielle Wright blogs on how L/EARN helped show her the way to medical school
November 2011


Danielle Wright, a 2005 alumna of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Project L/EARN program, is now working toward her MD and MPH. Here she offers her perspective on the need to help a diverse range of students succeed in medical school.

Intern of the Year PJG Award 2011
August 2011
The 2011 “Intern of the Year” Award was given to Femi Betiku, an exercise science major at Rutgers University. Mr. Betiku worked under the guidance of Dr. Shalonda Kelly of the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology to write a paper about “The Effects of Racial Identity, Stereotypical Black Masculinity & Socioeconomic Status on the Psychological and Somatic Health of African American Men.” He is currently applying to doctoral programs in Physical Therapy.

NCHEC Announces the Certification of Zupenda M. Davis, MCHES
April 2011
Zupenda M. Davis is among the first group to earn the certification as a Master Certified Health Education Specialist (MCHES). Davis, a 1994 alumna of Project L/EARN and 1996 graduate of Rutgers University, earned her MPH from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey. She is currently in the DrPH program at Drexel University.

Project L/EARN presents to member of President Obama’s Council
February 2011
Dr. Sylvester James Gates, Jr. – a member of President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology – paid a visit to Rutgers to provide feedback on the University’s efforts to diversify the sciences.

2010 Project L/EARN intern wins student poster Award
February 2011
Dany Fanfan, a summer 2010 Project L/EARN intern, presented her research on acculturation, marianismo beliefs, body weight and physical activity among Latina immigrants at the 2011 Conference of the Southern Nursing Research Society.

Theresa Simpson receives Matilda White Riley Term Paper Award
September 2010
Project L/EARN course instructor Theresa Simpson was given a Departmental Writing Award from the Rutgers Department of Sociology. She received the 2010 Matilda White Riley Term Paper Award for the most outstanding term paper for her paper entitled "Parents’ Valuation of Children’s Achievement in Organized Activities." Simpson is a doctoral student in sociology.

Project L/EARN receives Innovative Program Model Award
September 2010
Project L/EARN received an Innovative Program Model Award from the National Association of Minority Medical Educators (NAMME). Program Director Deedee Davis gave a plenary presentation at the NAMME Annual Conference in Richmond Virginia, describing the unique features that make the Project L/EARN training program so effective at preparing students from under-represented groups for careers in various health fields.

Musunga Mulenga receives 2010 Guarnaccia Award
August 2010
The 2010 “Intern of the Year” Award was given to intern Musunga Mulenga, a public health and pre-medical major at Rutgers University. Ms. Mulenga worked under the guidance of Dr. Derek DeLia of the Center for State Health Policy on a paper analyzing hospital readmission for congestive heart failure.

Two L/EARN course instructors share Alington Memorial Award
August 2010
A new award named after Project L/EARN founder Dr. Diane Alington was created to honor those who have made exemplary contributions to the development of Project L/EARN. In August, the inaugural Alington Memorial Founders Award was given at the Project L/EARN 20th Anniversary Conference to Project L/EARN alumni and course instructors Dawne Mouzon and Theresa Simpson, for their many longstanding and fundamental contributions to the design and implementation of the summer training curriculum. They modified reading lists, developed new ways of teaching and reviewing statistical and research methods material, implemented the practice of interns giving several short oral presentations during the summer to help them become comfortable with public speaking, gave detailed written feedback to interns on drafts of their summer research papers, and coordinated the curriculum with Project L/EARN Faculty Director Dr. Jane Miller, who teaches the summer writing workshops.

Two Project L/EARN mentors honored
August 2010
At its recent 20th Anniversary Conference, Project L/EARN presented service awards to two faculty mentors for years of stellar contributions to the program.

Project L/EARN 20th Conference a smashing success!
Project L/EARN featured on the Rutgers University Research Highlight web site. The article describes how the Project L/EARN summer training program enables sophomores and juniors from underrepresented populations to explore graduate training and career opportunities in health, mental health and health policy research.

Natasha Ramsey chosen for a Voorhees Fellowship in Public Service


Natasha Ramsey, L/EARN class of 2009 has been selected for the Ralph Voorhees Fellowship Program in Public Service at the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers. She is majoring in Public Health with a minor in biological sciences, and is preparing to apply to medical school. A graduate of the New Brunswick Health Sciences and Technology High School, she has been the recipient of several scholarships including the James Dickinson Carr and Edward J. Bloustein Scholars. Ms. Ramsey has been active in varied communities including Diamonds, a mentoring program for girls at the First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens, and the Paul Robeson Special Interest Section (a living community at Rutgers).

Call for abstracts – Project L/EARN 20th Anniversary Conference and Reunion Friday, August 6, 2010 New Brunswick NJ

Email abstracts to plearn-info@ifh.rutgers.edu by Friday, January 29, 2010 along with a completed cover page.
Click here for instructions and cover sheet.


!!! Save the date: Project L/EARN 20th Anniversary Conference !!!
Friday, Aug. 6 2010, New Brunswick, New Jersey

Project L/EARN featured on the Rutgers University Research Highlight
Project L/EARN featured on the Rutgers University Research Highlight web site. The article describes how the Project L/EARN summer training program enables sophomores and juniors from underrepresented populations to explore graduate training and career opportunities in health, mental health and health policy research.

Dawne Mouzon wins graduate student paper award
Dawne Mouzon a doctoral student in medical sociology and long-time Project L/EARN instructor, was the 1st place winner of the Mental Health Division’s Student Paper Competition at the annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Social Problems. She presented her award-winning paper “Marriage and Mental Health: Exploring Potential Race/Gender Variations” on August 9 in San Francisco. Dawne’s graduate study at Rutgers is funded by a Minority Fellowship from the American Sociological Association.

Karen Hidalgo receives Guarnaccia “Intern of the Year” Award


Karen Hidalgo is the 2009 recipient of the Peter J. Guarnaccia Intern of the Year Award from Project L/EARN. She was chosen by vote of her peers in terms of dedication, passion, tenacity and work ethic – characteristics that Dr. Guarnaccia brought to the program and modeled to the interns in his role as director, guest lecturer, writing workshop teacher, and mentor.

Project L/EARN students meet with former U.S. Surgeon General
October 2008: Three Project L/EARN alumni were among six undergraduate Rutgers students from health fields who had an opportunity to present their research to former Surgeon General of the United States, Dr. C. Everett Koop during his recent visit to Rutgers for a conference on Biology and Biomaterials.


From left to right: Jacqueline Palmer (L/EARN ’08, Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy; faculty mentor: Dr. Derek DeLia), Jennifer Lugris (L/EARN ‘07, sociology major; faculty mentor: Dr. Helene White), Dr. Koop, and Datrell Ward (L/EARN ’07, biology major; faculty mentor: Dr. Howard Leventhal).


New “Intern of the Year Award” named for Peter Guarnaccia
August 2008: To honor Dr. Peter Guarnaccia for his dedication to developing and overseeing Project L/EARN, a new award for best intern of the year has been created. The Peter J. Guarnaccia Award recipient will be chosen annually from that summer’s cohort of Project L/EARN interns by vote of his/her peers in terms of dedication, passion, tenacity and work ethic – characteristics that Dr. Guarnaccia has brought to the program and modeled to the interns in his role as director, guest lecturer, writing workshop teacher, and mentor. Fittingly, the first recipient was 2008 Project L/EARN intern Samia Ortiz-Hernandez – Dr. Guarnaccia’s intern – who hails from the University of Puerto Rico.


Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Awards Rutgers’ Institute for Health Research $2.95 Million to Increase Diversity among Future Health Researchers
April 2008: The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) has awarded a six-year, $2.95 million grant to continue support for Project L/EARN, an intensive summer research training internship for undergraduate students that is housed at Rutgers Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and Aging Research (IHHCPAR). Under RWJF funding, Professor Jane Miller will assume the Faculty Directorship from Professor Peter Guarnaccia who has led Project L/Earn for the past 12 years under funding from the National Institutes of Mental Health (NIMH). Miller – a research professor at IHHCPAR and the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy – will co-direct the program with long-time Program Director Diane (Deedee) Davis.

 
A project of the Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and Aging Research, and Rutgers University


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