Graduate and Professional Student Government (GPSG)

The purpose of the Graduate and Professional Student Government (GPSG), according to the by- laws, is to serve as an appropriate voice on campus for graduate students, to meet the various needs of graduate students, and to establish a liaison between graduate faculty, graduate students, and the University.  The UNC Charlotte GPSG is here to serve as an advocate for students, and it will be as strong and effective as the passion and participation of its members; thus, your active participation will ensure that your issues are heard and addressed.

The HSR PhD program also has a student organization, which meets monthly during the fall and spring semesters.  Active members of the student organization who regularly attend its meetings and participate in related activities may be eligible for travel funding to support attendance at academic conferences.

Name/Year Started: Sharon J. MacKinnon (2009)
From: Queens, NY 
Academic Background: MSN (Masters of Science in Nursing), FNP
Program Focus/Specialty: Health Services Research (Undetermined)
Teaching Interests: Full time faculty UNC Charlotte graduate/
undergraduate nursing programs
Research Interests: Nurse practitioners and access to primary care
Name/Year Started: Brian Witt (2009)
From: Durham, NC
Academic Background: MPH
Program Focus/Specialty: Health Services Research (Health Disparities,
Health Promotion)
Teaching Interests: Health education
Research Interests: HIV, domestic violence, stigma associated with
chronic disease
Name/Year Started: Scott Robinson (2010)
From: UK, Peterborough; Prior to Charlotte-USA, Albuquerque, NM
Academic Background: BA, Biology/Sociology and Chemistry minor;
MA, Sociology; MPH, Epidemiology, PHD coursework, Biostatistics
Program Focus/Specialty: Health Outcomes, large admistrative data,
epidemiology in areas such as post-operative pain, chronic obstructive
pulmonary disease (COPD), atrial fibrillation and bacteremia
Teaching Interests: Possibly an analytics course
Research Interests: Health outcomes, disparities, large date, COPD,
atrial fibrillation, post-operative pain, bacteremia
CV: (link)
Name/Year Started: Ian Hewer (2010)
From: England originally. In US for 23 years, currently living in Asheville, NC.
Academic Background: Mostly nursing. BN (Univ of Southampton);
MA (Sociology,
NYU); MSN (Nurse Anesthesia, UCSF)
Program Focus: Health Services Research
Teaching Interests: Currently clinical anesthesia
Research Interests: Health policy/ economics, clinical implementation
of academic research

Name/Year Started: Debosree Roy (2011)
From: India
Academic Background: BA in Sociology from St. Xavier's College; MA in
Sociology from University of Calcutta; MA in gerontology from University
of Louisiana at Monroe
Program Focus/Specialty: Data Mining and Research Methods
Teaching Interests: Research Methods
Research Interests: Healthcare outcomes, cost and utilization, rare
diseases, and chronic comorbidities
CV: (link)

Name/Year Started: Elissa Brooks Nelson (2011)
From: Kernersville, NC
Academic Background: BS, Sociology and concentration in criminology
and social control/minor in Criminal Justice; MA in Counseling-community;
Graduate certificate in Gerontology
Program Focus/Specialty: Research Methods
Teaching Interests: N/A
Research Interests: Child Health. Examining how homeless children
utilize health services. More specifically, examining homeless children by
their "homelessness" type (i.e hotel/motel or shelter). By having a better
understanding of how homeless children and their families utilize health
services based on their homelessness "type," resources can be better
allocated to serve this population which will promote better outcomes and
CV: (link)
Name/Year Started: Grace Ngugi (2011)
From: Nairobi, Kenya
Academic Background: MS, University of Oxford; MPH, University of
Albany (SUNY)
Program Focus/Specialty: Health Policy
Teaching Interests: History of public health/health services research,
health behavior, health education/health promotion, reproductive health,
environmental and occupational health, global health topics; health care
Research Interests: Health care disparities and vulnerable populations,
social determinants of health, health equity, quality of life; needs
assessment,health care utilization patterns, outcomes research, efficiency
andcost-effectiveness, quality and safety of care; health delivery structures;
theory and evidence-based approaches to research, policy, and program
planning; translational research;
coordinated systems of care; women’s health, urban health; obesity and
chronic disease (diabetes  and cardiovascular diseases) prevention,
nutrition therapy; green spaces and therapeutic environments; spirituality
and health.



Name/Year Started: Shweta Shah (2012)
From: Mumbai, India
Academic Background: MHA, University of Houston (Clear Lake)
Program Focus/Specialty: Health Disparities
Teaching Interests: Issues of health and quality of life
Research Interests: Chronic diseases, health disparities, healthcare
utilization, quality and outcomes research
Name/Year Started: Josephine Appiah (2012)
From: Freeport, IL
Academic Background: BS Community Health (University of Illinois at
Urbana-Champaign); MPH (Texas A&M)
Program Focus/Specialty: Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services
Teaching Interests: Health education, health promotion, public health
Research Interests: Adolescent substance abuse and misuse,
prescription drug misuse, barriers to substance abuse treatment access
and utilization, intervention, program planning and evaluation, health
CV: (link) 
Name/Year Started: Sara Shahbazi (2013)
From: Tehran, Iran
Academic Background: BSM, MSPH
Program Focus/Specialty: Health Services Utilization and Research
Teaching Interests: Biostatistics
Research Interests: Data warehousing, data management, data analysis,
maternal and child health, women's health, minority health and rural
Name/Year Started: Kathryn Grimsley (2013)
From: Harrisburg, NC
Academic Background: BSW and MSW, UNC Charlotte
Program Focus/Specialty: Mental Health
Teaching Interests: Social work, sociology, psychology and public
Research Interests: Eating disorder outpatient treatment, dual
diagnosis treatment, access to mental health services for vulnerable
groups, client engagement in outpatient mental health and substance
abuse services, opiod maintenance programs
CV: (link)
Name/Year Started: Patrick Sery (2014)
From: Cote D'Ivoire, Daloa
Academic Background: BS in Computer Information System, California
State University Los Angeles; PSM in Health Informatics, UNC Charlotte
Program Focus/Specialty: Health Disparities, Health Services Utilization
and Cost, and Research Methods
Teaching Interests: Biostatistics
Research Interests: Health outcomes and disparities, data analysis
Name/Year Started: Eric Junious (2014)
From: South Carolina
Academic Background: MSW, BSW
Program Focus/Specialty: Administration-Community Practice
Research Interests: HIV and potential barriers to care
Name/Year Started: Darrin Johnson (2014)
From: Charlotte, NC
Academic Backgroud: B.S in Journalism and Mass Communication; MPA
Program Focus/Specialty: HIV, Health Disparities, Community-Based
Organizations, and Evaluating HIV Behavioral Interventions
Research Interests: Assessing HIV Prevention and Treatment in Black,
Gay, and Bisexual Men