Biostatistics Welcomes Mr. Zhengya Gao 

Please welcome Mr. Zhengya Gao as a Data Management Analyst II. Zhengya Gao joined the Children’s Oncology Group (COG) at UF. Zhengya received a Master of Science degree in Biostatistics from University of Florida in 2021. He also holds a Master’s degree in Chemical Biology from Fudan University.  Zhengya will be working with the COG faculty assisting in study design, data synthesis and analysis, and research publications.

(pictured: Mr. Zhengya Gao)

Submitted by Deana Nance

Biostatistics Award Winners for 2021

The department recognized the hard work of faculty, staff and students at a spring picnic held at Lake Wauburg. The 2021 award winners include:

2021 MS Outstanding Student – Yujie Wang
2021 MS Outstanding Student – Xinyang Liu

2021 Online MS Outstanding Student – Sara Ser
2021 Online MS Outstanding Student – Ashlyn Anderson
2021 Ph.D. Preliminary Exam – Meilin Jiang
2021 Outstanding Student Support – Dr. Babette Brumback
2021 Outstanding Teacher – Dr. Ji-Hyun Lee

(photo caption: Lake Wauburg)

Submitted by Deana Nance


UF is Now a Study Site for the Preventing Alzheimer’s with Cognitive Training (PACT) Study

Adam J. Woods, Ph.D., is the principal investigator for UF’s Preventing Alzheimer’s with Cognitive Training (PACT) study site. The study explores whether computerized brain training exercises have the potential to reduce the risk of mild cognitive impairment/dementia, such as Alzheimer’s, in older adults. According to Dr. Woods, the PACT study might be the largest clinical trial for cognitive training ever performed upon its completion. Led by the University of South Florida, currently the study is expected to enroll 7,600 healthy adults, ages 65 and older with no signs of cognitive impairment or dementia at various study sites across the U.S.

(pictured: Dr. Adam Woods)

Submitted by Aliye Karakoyun


Welcome Dr. Zhoumeng Lin and his Team!

Please join the department of Environmental and Global Health in welcoming Dr. Zhoumeng Lin and his team to PHHP! He received a B.Med. in Preventive Medicine from Southern Medical University in China in 2009 and a Ph.D. in Toxicology from the University of Georgia in 2013. Dr. Lin’s research is focused on the development and application of computational technologies to study food safety, nanoparticle and chemical risk assessment. Please also welcome his team:

• Wei-Chun Chou- Research Assistant Professor

• Qiran Chen- Post Doc Associate

• Md Mahbubul Huq Riad- Post Doc Associate

• Long Yuan- Post Doc Associate

Welcome to PHHP!

(pictured: Dr. Zhoumeng Lin)

Submitted by Brynn Dalton

Bacteria Lurking in Florida Water Responsible for Hundreds of Cases

Dr. Afsar Ali was interviewed for CBS Tampa Bay’s story "Bacteria lurking in Florida water responsible for hundreds of cases," which discusses the prevalence of Vibrio vulnificus in warm waters. These bacteria can also be referred to as “flesh eating bacteria.” The piece recently won a FL Association of Broadcast Journalists Award this past month!

(pictured: Dr. Afsar Ali)

Submitted by Brynn Dalton


Dr. Hu Receives K01 Award

Dr. Hui Hu has received a K01 award from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) to examine the impact of the external exposome on hypertensive disorders of pregnancy and early risk of maternal cardiovascular disease after pregnancy. Overseeing his progress is a group of mentors with expertise in cardiovascular health and 'omics (Dr. Jinying Zhao), biomedical informatics (Dr. Elizabeth A. Shenkman), environmental and perinatal epidemiology (Dr. David A. Savitz), and maternal-fetal medicine (Dr. Tony S. Wen).

(pictured: Dr. Hui Hu)

Submitted by Cierara Parker

Dr. Striley’s Great Teaching Certificate

Dr. Catherine Striley was one of the five College of Public Health and Health Professions faculty who expanded their knowledge of teaching strategies through the Center for Teaching Excellence Passport to Great Teaching Program and who received the “Great Teaching Certificate.”  Dr. Striley completed courses that included Virtual Simulations, Asynchronous Discussions, Teaching in Classrooms with HyFlex Technology and No Walls Teaching activities and retreats.

(pictured: Dr. Catherine Striley)

Submitted by Cierara Parker


HSRMP Welcomes New Chair, Lee Revere, PhD, MS

The Department of Health Services Research, Management and Policy would like to introduce its new Chair, Dr. Lee Revere, who starts July 1, 2021.  Dr. Revere joins us from the University of Texas Health Science Center Houston where she served as a professor and director of the George McMillan Fleming Center for Healthcare Management.  Her research focuses on the impact of fiscal policies on healthcare organizations and patients and how these organizations can adapt their overall processes to provide individuals with high quality, sustainable care.  Dr. Revere looks forward to serving the UF community and contributing to the development of students to be strong, impactful healthcare leaders.  Please click here for PHHP’s welcome article for Dr. Revere. Welcome to HSRMP, Dr. Revere!

(pictured: Dr. Lee Revere)

Submitted by Lance Jackson

Dr. Hong’s Article Discusses Benefits of Patient-Provider Dialogue Regarding Mental Health Outcomes in US Adults Living with Cancer

Dr. Young-Rock Hong, Assistant Professor, recently published an article in Cancer Medicine entitled “Patient–provider discussion about emotional and social needs, mental health outcomes, and benefit finding among U.S. Adults living with cancer."  His study team, including a Health Services Research PhD Student, Sandhya Yadav, studied whether a detailed patient-provider discussion about a patient’s emotional and social needs affected psychological well-being.  The results indicated that individuals with cancer who engaged in a detailed discussion focused on emotional and social needs with their provider were less likely to report depressive symptoms and more likely to experience benefit finding (positive attitudes toward living with cancer). These findings support the importance of patient-provider discussion about psychosocial needs as part of treatment for individuals with cancer. Please find the article link here. Great job Dr. Hong and Ms. Yadav!

 Submitted by Lance Jackson


UF PHHP and the Department of Occupational Therapy Celebrate National Occupational Therapy Month

UFOT spotlighted alumni who invest in the department and the profession as clinical fieldwork educators and capstone mentors. 17 alumni, ranging from the class of 1999 to the class of 2018, were identified by faculty to share a favorite occupation, a Gator chomp photo, and a personal statement on why they love occupational therapy. Spotlighted Gator OTs represented nine clinical practice areas, four states, two countries, and seventeen different organizations. Alumni bio sketches were showcased throughout the month of April on the PHHP Facebook page and Twitter and can be found on the UF Department of Occupational Therapy web site. #OTMONTH.

Submitted by Betsy Westra

Occupational Therapy Students Receive Scholarships in 2020-2021 Academic Year

The Doctor of Occupational Therapy program recognized multiple students for academic and professional achievement in the 2020-2021 academic year. The Department congratulates the following scholarship award recipients: Natalie Baumgarten (Alice C. Jantzen Fellowship), Kara Senn (Margaret Clare Shoemyen Graduate Fund), Min Song (The Judie Pink-Goldin Award), Tiffany Henderson (Jan Z. Olsen OT Scholarship Fund), Jamie Chavez (Jan Z. Olsen OT Scholarship Fund), Amber Green (Jan Z. Olsen OT Scholarship Fund), Daniela Moreira (Jan Z. Olsen OT Scholarship Fund), Sarah Mairs (The Kay Walker Fund Award), and Rachel Stacy (The Florida Elks Club Scholarship).

(pictured: scholarship recipients)

Submitted by Betsy Westra


American Physical Therapy Association Recognizes UF PT Faculty and DPT Graduate

The American Physical Therapy Association (APTA) has selected four faculty members and a recent Doctor of Physical Therapy graduate for national awards: Jason Beneciuk, PT, DPT, PhD, MPH, Mark Bishop, PT, PhD, FAPTA, Elisa Gonzalez-Rothi, DPT, PhD, Alyse Hausman, DPT, and Claudia Senesac, PhD. 

Dr. Beneciuk is the recipient of the Eugene Michels New Investigator Award, Dr. Bishop received the Lucy Blair Award, Dr. Gonzalez-Rothi received the Margaret L. Moore Award for Outstanding New Academic Faculty Member, Dr. Hausman is the recipient of the Mary McMillan Scholarship Award, and Dr. Senesac received the Societal Impact Award.

Read the full article. Congratulations, Gator PTs!

(pictured: From top to bottom, left to right: Drs. Jason Beneciuk, Mark Bishop, Elisa Gonzalez-Rothi, Alyse Hausman, and Claudia Senesac.)

Submitted by Jaclyn Scott

Wyche Selected as Kuhns Award Recipient

The UF DPT Clinical Education team selected Victoria “Tori” Wyche as the recipient of the Kuhns scholarship award for the UF DPT class of 2022 for demonstrating consistent outstanding performance in her first full-time clinical experience, and for showing promise as a future clinician of excellence.

“To me, clinical excellence means showing up every day ready to challenge myself and learn as much as possible,” Tori said. “I am grateful for all that I have gained from my clinical experience and I am so thankful to the Kuhns for supporting UF DPT students and recognizing me for my hard work.”

Read the article here. Keep up the amazing work, Tori! 

(pictured: Victoria Wyche)

Submitted by Jaclyn Scott


Dr. Butera Receives Outstanding Manuscript Award for Best Clinical Research Publication

Recent Rehabilitation Science graduate, Katie Butera, DPT, PhD, received the Rehabilitation Science 2021 Outstanding Manuscript Award for best clinical research publication.

Dr. Butera developed and published the “Model for Integrating Pain with Movement” in the Physical Therapy Journal, the official journal of the American Physical Therapy Association. This paper provides a theoretical framework that links pain-related changes in nervous system processing with altered movement recovery outcomes.

Additionally, Dr. Butera’s dissertation work was published in Pain, the official publication of the International Association for the Study of Pain with a Journal Impact Factor of 6.03. Congratulations, Dr. Butera! Read more here.

(pictured: Dr. Katie Butera)

Submitted by Jaclyn Scott

Dr. Sunshine Receives Outstanding Manuscript Award for Best Basic Science Paper

Michael Sunshine, PhD, recently received the 2021 Outstanding Manuscript Award for outstanding basic science paper.

Dr. Sunshine is a recent graduate of the Rehabilitation Science Doctoral Program, and his paper “Restoration of breathing after opioid overdose and spinal cord injury using temporal interference stimulation” contained work completed during his PhD thesis.

The paper was published in Communications Biology and has been accessed more than 1,200 times since it was published in January. The paper was also featured in a news release and the UF McKnight Brain Institute website. Amazing work, Dr. Sunshine! Read more here.

(pictured: Dr. Michael Sunshine)

Submitted by Jaclyn Scott


Dr. Walker and SBS Students Publish in Diabetes Care

Ashby Walker, PhD, faculty in SBS and the Department of Health Services Research, Management and Policy and the director for health equity initiatives at the UF Diabetes Institute, along with SBS PhD student, Jennifer Maizel, SBS MPH students, Claudia Anez-Zabala and Xanadu Roque, and collaborators at Stanford, published an article in the journal, Diabetes Care. The study, linked here, found that patients with type 1 diabetes cite negative interactions with providers as a significant barrier to care. Dr. Walker, who led the research as first author, hopes the findings generate an awareness about the importance of cultivating positive provider-patient relationships and treating individuals with type 1 diabetes with empathy and respect in clinical encounters.

(pictured clockwise from top left: Dr. Ashby Walker, Claudia Anez-Zabala, Xanadu Roque, Jennifer Maizel)

Submitted by Dr. Lindsey King

Dr. Moorhouse Develops Website to Promote Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Mike Moorhouse, PhD, SBS faculty and director of the Bachelor of Health Science program, worked with undergraduate students to develop the PHHP Undergraduate Diversity Caucus (website linked here) to make the undergraduate environment more safe, affirming, and supportive. The caucus is comprised of a group of students and faculty who actively work toward creating and maintaining a safe and affirming culture within the college. The website highlights the Mentoring Up approach, student liaisons, student advocacy, a celebration of diversity, history lessons to better understand the past, understanding terminology, and recommendations/ resources.

(pictured: Dr. Mike Moorhouse)

Submitted by Dr. Lindsey King


Doctoral Student Well-Being Survey

The wellness team seeks to better understand stressors that are associated with being a doctoral student. This survey was designed to capture elements of the doctoral student experience related to your psychosocial background, academic program, and overall program experience.

Please consider taking this survey if you are enrolled in any Public Health and Health Professions doctoral program at the University of Florida. Data from this survey will help inform and develop mental programming for doctoral students.

Take the survey from this link: Doctoral Student Well-Being Survey

Submitted by Brynn Dalton