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 Scholarship Awards

2020 Forum Scholarship Winners



Health Equity Scholarship Winners

 Lucki Word, MA - Wayne State University School of Medicine 

Lucki Word is a first year medical student at Wayne State University School of Medicine, in Detroit, Michigan. As a native Detroiter, Lucki intends to use her medical training to provide care to those in directly in her community. Lucki is interested in pursuing a career as Internal Medicine physician, specializing in Infectious Disease.

Jamie Warner, AA - University of South Florida

My name is Jamie Warner, and I am a rising third year Biomedical Sciences student from the University of South Florida, receiving a minor in Public Health. I became interested in end of life/ hospice research when my father passed in February of 2019. I was taking an Ethics at the End of Life course, and learning about the idea of a "good death." Seeing hospice providers cater to my father and offer him the option of a death with dignity pushed me to join a research team at the USF Department of Communication under Brianna Cusanno, M.A. and her advisors Patrice Buzzanell, PhD and Lori Roscoe, PhD. studying resilience building in hospice caregivers. My life goal is to become a physician, and the wisdom that I have learned from my wonderful research team and the hospice providers who were interviewed have taught me to bring empathy, compassion, and kindness to each of my (future) patient interactions. I am so grateful for this opportunity and so excited to present our research! Thank you.


Jia Xin Huang, MD - UC Davis Medical Center

My name is Jia Xin Huang and I go by Jess Huang. I was born in Fuzhou, China and moved to New York, USA at the age of six. I attended Brooklyn College at the City University of New York with a major in Physics and minor in Spanish. I worked at the National Institutes of Health for two years before I moved to Burlington, Vermont to attend medical school at the University of Vermont. I am completing my last year of pediatrics residency at UC Davis in Sacramento, California. I will be one of the two chief residents for the academic year 2020 – 2021.

Growing up in New York City, I was fortunate to have constant interactions with very diverse individuals and was exposed to a plethora of different cultures and languages. I became trilingual in Chinese, Spanish, and English and benefited from the ability to communicate with different communities. Through my personal experiences of taking care of my grandmother when she was battling Alzheimer's disease, serving as an interpreter for my parents, and frequently being in hospital settings, I learned first-hand the complexity of conveying information correctly with appropriate cultural context. I saw how difficult it was to find providers who could communicate with my grandmother in our regional dialect, which added to the challenge of understanding her needs. It became clear to me that those who were less fluent in English were less likely to advocate for their own needs. All of these experiences motivated me to become a physician who will be an advocate for all patients and families, and to be more cognizant of individuals who may be voiceless due to language and cultural barriers. I am thankful to be able to attend the ACH Research Forum to learn from individuals with similar interests whose expertise can help me further develop those skills.




Humanities and Social Science Scholarship Winners

Delaney Tyson - University of Pittsburgh

Delaney Tyson is a senior at the University of Pittsburgh earning a BA in Linguistics. She is currently doing research on certain linguistic aspects of clinician-patient conversations regarding Intimate Partner Violence with UMPC, and hopes to continue to contribute to this growing body of research in the future.




Megha Sidhpura, MS - The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda


Yen-Ming Huang, PhD - South Dakota State University

Dr. Huang is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Allied and Population Health in College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Professions at South Dakota State University (SDSU). He received his Ph.D. in Social and Administrative Sciences in Pharmacy and a minor in Educational Psychology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. For his PhD degree, Dr. Huang investigated the barriers and facilitators of medication adherence in people with type 2 diabetes across different health literacy levels. His research interest concentrates on the medication adherence of people with chronic illnesses, with a specific focus on the way health literacy and psychosocial factors influence patients’ medication-taking. For his teaching at SDSU, Dr. Huang addresses health literacy and cultural competence to pharmacy students so that they can get early exposure to these individual’s factors and facilitate their thoughts about how to provide tailored services to the diverse population.



Student Scholarship Winners

Danielle Schubbe, BA - Radboudumc

Danielle joined the Coproduction Laboratory at Dartmouth College in September 2017. She received her BA in Psychology from Southern Methodist University, and she is currently pursuing her PhD in Health Services Research as an external candidate at Radboudumc in Nijmegen, Netherlands. Her research interests are patient engagement, shared decision making, implementation and sustainability of shared decision making, using pictures and visual elements in health communication, health literacy, and reducing health disparities.”




Karen Elizabeth Schlag, MA - The University of Texas at Austin

Karen is a doctoral candidate in interpersonal communication at the Moody College of Communication, where some of her primary areas of research include supportive communication, caregiving, stigma and family communication. Her dissertation will examine perceived stigma and support-seeking tactics by family caregivers of individuals diagnosed with dementia. Karen is a member of a research team led by Dr. Jung Kwak from the University of Texas School of Nursing studying end-of-life decision-making by dementia family caregivers. Karen has also served on a research team partially funded by a Communication for Health, Empathy, and Resilience (CHER) grant from the Center for Health Communication (CHC) that examines the influence of regulatory focus tailoring on health messaging for individuals at risk for type 2 diabetes. Karen additionally is working on an interdisciplinary project studying family structures and maintenance between individuals deported from the U.S. and their children and partners who remain in the U.S. Karen earned a Master of Arts in media studies from Pennsylvania State University and taught a various communication courses at the University of Houston – Downtown before attending the University of Texas at Austin.


Samuel Wilson, BSc - University of Ottawa

Sam is a third-year medical student from the University of Ottawa. His interests include healthcare communication, ultrasound, and medical teaching. Outside of medical school, Sam works as an Infographic Editor for the CanadiEM Emergency Medicine website and blog.

Rachael McCormick, BA - University of South Florida

As a graduate student in medical anthropology at the University of South Florida, my research focuses on nutrition, food security and community health. I am also a research coordinator at Moffitt Cancer Center, where I work on studies exploring caregiver experience and clinical participation, young adult patients’ (and their caregivers’) social networks and support needs, and health disparities. At this year’s virtual conference, I will be presenting a poster titled “When cancer discriminates: A comparison of demographic, psychosocial and health-behavior variables among racial and ethnic minorities and white non-Hispanics in central Florida.”


Adati Tarfa, PharmD - University of Wisconsin-Madison

Adati Tarfa is a third-year Ph.D. graduate student of Health Services and Policy Research at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Pharmacy. Adati’s research vision is to improve access to and retention in care for marginalized populations living with chronic illnesses such as HIV. Adati uses patient-centered conceptual models to investigate gaps in patient care, as well as inter collaborative partnership between pharmacists, social workers, nurses, physicians, and other healthcare professionals to address those gaps in care.

Adati also utilizes narrative medicine as a powerful means of deepening her self-awareness of the experiences she faces as a Black woman navigating the healthcare system. Communicating her experiences to stakeholders empowers other patients to take an active role in their chronic disease management. Sharing these narratives with caregivers encourages them to become more emphatic towards patients which leads to better patient health outcomes.