Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics
College of Public Health

April 2011

Awards Ceremony April 2011

The Epidemiology and Biostatistics Department Chair and a number of Masters' and Doctoral students were recognized during the University of South Florida, College of Public Health, National Public Health Week Awards Ceremony, held Wednesday April 6th. Dr. Heather Stockwell was the recipient of this year's COPH Outstanding Professor Award. This award is determined through a process of nominations submitted by students in the College. As an instructor in the Epidemiology core course, Dr. Stockwell is a part of every Masters student's education. This award is a reflection of Dr. Stockwell's commitment to teaching, advising and mentoring students in the College of Public Health.

Student Honorary Awards for Research and Presentation (SHARP) recipients: Rajendra Kadel, Stephanie Kolar, Ren Chen and Michelle Iannacone.

USF Health Research One Week Student Presenters: Lindsey Morton (Research Excellence Award), Christine Ancheta, Christen Mayer, Jennifer Peregoy, Ya Wang, and Xiaosun Lu;

USF Research Day Presentations: Alexia Makris (Award Recipient), Stephanie Kolar (Award Recipient), Xiaosun Lu, Zachary Thompson, and Christine Ancheta.

Scholars Award recipients: Lauren Young, Kelly Sincich, Ivana Sehovic, and Samantha Hooper, Chighaf Bakour, Michelle Nash, and Dongyuan Xu.

Xiaosun Lu is also the recipient of this year's Samuel P. Bell, III Scholarship.

Congratulations to all this year's awardees.

July 2010

Summer Field Experience Debriefing

Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics students enrolled in the summer Field Experience presented posters of their work at the summer semester debriefing held in the college on July 23rd. Participating in the poster presentations were (left to right); Ya Wang, Alison Chee, Djilan Yao, Brett Kaminski, Lei Luo, Courtney Smith, and Zhengming Chen. Students in this summer's group did their work at the Polk County Health Department, H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute, the James A. Haley Veterans' Hospital, The Lawton and Rhea Chiles Center for Healthy Mothers and Babies, the Jaeb Center for Health Research and The AIDS Institute. The students did a great job with their posters and are a wonderful representation of the quality students in our programs

June 2010

Summer Institute for Training in Biostatistics Class of 2010

The Summer Institute for Training in Biostatistics (SIBS), funded by the National Heart, Blood and Lung Institute, just completed its six-week training for twenty outstanding students representing thirteen different states and seventeen college and universities. These students were selected from over 160 applications and this training provided a comprehensive look at the role of biostatistics in advancing medicine and improving health. Together they completed an over 3600 hours of instruction, lab, and research through the 30 days of training. Each week students had hands-on training and practicum under the mentorship of Moffitt Research Department and Jaeb Center for Health Research. Weekly field visits also included lectures and demonstration from the Arthritis Research Institute of America, Hillsborough County Epidemiology Department, USF Pediatric Epidemiology Center and the VA Safety Center. In addition, several student groups volunteered at the Hope Lodge serving the patients and their caregiver with several group activities, a dessert bar, and nights of conversations. Students were divided into groups for the purpose of planning and implementing clinical trials based on different subject and were responsible for implementing their new found skills in the two major biostatistician's software choices of R and SAS and analyzing their data. The final day of each group presented their research and outcomes to the faculty that included SIBS Director, Dr. Yiliang Zhu, Dr. Getachew Dagne, and Dr. Yangxin Huang from the Biostatistics Department.

December 18, 2009

Students Participate in Fall Poster Session

Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics students, Margaret Brancolino (Photo), Emmeline Sangourzan, Erin Fowler, Kara Stanley, Leora Munfus, Manfei Xu, Siew Wong, Yang Ji, and Anne DeMuth celebrated the end of the fall semester with a Field Experience Debriefing and Pot Luck Luncheon.

For more Photographs,
click here

October 2009

Two Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics Students Receive Grants

Jennifer Kornosky (Photo), a doctoral student in Epidemiology, has been awarded a $27K CDC grant to study the effects of smoking on DNA epigenetic changes in fetal stem cells. The grant proposal is unique and the findings of the study will shed more light on the early impact of tobacco smoke on fetal stem cell

Ronee Wilson (Photo unavailable), also a doctoral student in Epidemiology, received $37,000 NIH supplemental grant through the College of Nursing. The grant-funded research is an extension of an independent study Ms. Wilson conducted on the "Impact of Postpartum Thyroid Dysfunction on Infant Growth and Neuro-cognitive Outcomes".

Both students are advised by Dr. Hamisu Salihu.

September 2009

USF Awarded a Summer Institute for Training in Biostatistics by NIH

Researchers from Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics have been awarded a 3-year, $800K grant from the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute to establish a Summer Institute for Training in Biostatistics. Led by Dr. Yiliang Zhu with Drs. G. Dagne, Huang, Salihu, and Wu,  the success of the USF team is the result of collaboration among researchers from Colleges of Public Health, Medicine, Nursing, Moffitt Cancer Center, Jaeb Center for Health Research, and Tampa VA hospital. USF’s summer institute is a part of the national efforts to train next generation of biostatistical scientists with a 6-week, all-expense-paid program for students interested in pursuing a career in biostistics or related field.

August 2009

Dr. Hamisu Salihu and Collegues Publish Article

Salihu HM, Luke S, Alio AP, Deutsch A, Marty PJ. The impact of obesity on spontaneous and medically indicated preterm birth among adolescent mothers. Archives of Gynecology and Obstetrics. 2009 Aug 26.


 July 2009

Field Experience Debriefing and Poster Session

Jamila Ealey (left), Nellie Darbinyan, Judy Jackson, Helen Georgiev, Lissa Fahlman, Reina Patel, Selina Radlein, Shawn Hirsch, and Matthew Roach participated in the summer poster session. 

Click Here to view more photograhs.

April 24, 2009

Students and faculty enjoyed the spring Field Experience Debriefing and pot-luck luncheon

Students presenting their Field Experience work in poster format were, from left to right: Ashley Cole (Epi), Kimberly Davis (Epi), Talat Almukhtar (Epi), William (Andy) Lapcevic (Biostats), Bambi Arnold (Epi), and Peiyao Cheng (Biostats) not pictured.


April 1, 2009

Award Recipients at  Annual Public Health Awards Ceremony

As Part of National Public Health Week the College of Public Health Annual Awards Ceremony was held Wednesday, April 1st   in the College Auditorium.  The department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics recipients included both students and faculty.  Leigh Mathias, a doctoral student in Epidemiology, received a Student Research Scholarship.  Student Honorary Awards for Research and Practice (SHARP awards) went to Stephanie Kolar, Michelle Iannacone and Beibei Lu, Doctoral Students in Epidemiology and to Natasha Sobers-Grannum, a Masters Degree student in Epidemiology. The Lea Leavengood Senior Program Endowed Scholarship went the Yang Ji, a Dual Biostatistics Masters and Aging Studies Doctoral student.    Inductees into Delta Omega from the department included Graduates Shandey Malcolm (MPH Dual Epidemiology and Biostatistics), Michelle Nash (MPH Epidemiology) and Faculty member Wendy Nembhard, Ph.D.  Elizabeth Barnett Pathak, Ph.D. was named the 2009 COPH Outstanding Professor.  Congratulations to all the award recipients.


Top Picture: Elizabeth Barnett Pathak, recipient of the 2009 COPH Outstanding Professor Award with student Selina Radlein 

Middle Picture:  SHARP award recipients Michelle Iannacone and Beibei Lu

Bottom Picture: Dean Donna Peterson with award winner Yang Ji


April 2009

Dr. Yangxin Huang Receives Grant from NIH for Project on Statistical Methods for Long-Term HIV Modeling and Design

Yangxin Huang, PhD, Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics received a notice of R03 grant award from NIH with total cost of $145,000 for September 2009 to August 2011.  The project is to study HIV/AIDS mechanism-based system of nonlinear ordinary differential equations with time-varying drug efficacy and corresponding statistical methods in evaluating protocol designs used in AIDS clinical trials for their effectiveness in generating desired clinical outcomes.

March 27, 2009

Doctoral Student Receives Outstanding Graduate Student Award

Beibei Lu, a doctoral student in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics received an Outstanding Graduate Student Award. Nominated by Dr. Heather Stockwell, Chair of the Department, The award was presented at the Graduate Student Awards Banquet on Friday March 27, 2009 at the Marshall Center.

January, 2009

The Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics Welcomes Visiting Scholar!

Dr. Weian Du, PhD in Econometrics, is an associate professor at Wuhan University of Technology (WHUT) in China has joined Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics at COPH as a visiting scholar for one year. Dr. Du has 13 year's experience teaching econometrics, health insurance, and security and investment analysis for graduate & undergraduate students. His research interests focus on econometric statistics, health insurance and risk analysis.  Dr. Du will be working closely with Dr. Yangxin Huang to develop collaborative research agent on statistical applications to health economics, finance and health insurance.

October 29, 2008

Study focuses on PTSD and pregnancy in military women

Kathleen O’Rourke, PhD, professor of epidemiology, and Elizabeth Barnett Pathak, PhD, associate professor of epidemiology, were awarded the 18-month, $214,357 contract from the Department of Defense to study the impact of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) on the pregnancy outcomes of women in the military has been funded as part of the Pentagon’s unprecedented $300-million initiative to study PTSD and traumatic brain injury.

October 3, 2008

USF joins NIH's landmark National Children's Study

USF was awarded $28.8 million to oversee the NIH-sponsored National Children’s Study research contract in Hillsborough and Orange counties for the first five years of a 20-year study to investigating how genetic and environmental factors influence childhood health and disease. Perinatal epidemiologists Wendy Nembhard, PhD, (left) and Kathleen O'Rourke, PhD, supported by faculty across the USF College of Public Health, worked behind the scenes for four years to ensure USF had a major role in this study.

August 27, 2008

Four USF Health professors receive University's highest honor & Dr. C. Hendricks Brown Selected as Distinguished USF Health Professor

Dr. Hendricks Brown has been selected as a Distinguished USF Health Professor for 2008! Dr. Brown is an internationally renowned expert in prevention methodology research, a field he is credited with helping to develop. Much of Dr. Brown’s research has been in partnership with leading Prevention Research Centers funded by the National Institutes of Mental Health and the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

August 19, 2008

Dr. Salihu leads state initiative to tackle black infant mortality

Mother's obesity a factor in newborn deaths for blacks, not whites

A study led by the University of South Florida sheds new light on obesity’s role in the black-white gap in infant mortality. In a report in the June 2008 issue of the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology. “Even if the infant of an obese black woman survives pregnancy, labor and delivery, that baby is at greater risk of dying than a baby born to an obese white woman,” said the study’s lead author Hamisu Salihu, MD, PhD, associate professor of epidemiology at the USF College of Public Health. Infants of obese black mothers had a higher risk of death in the first 27 days following birth than newborns of obese white mothers.

April 16, 2008

Dr. Aurora Sanchez-Anguiano presents at American Association of Cancer Research meeting

Dr. Aurora Sanchez-Anguiano presented a poster titled “A Study of Lung Cancer in Florida: Gender and Ethnic Differences 1981- 2003” at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in San Diego, April 12-16, 2006. Other authors on the poster were Drs. L. Rajaram, Heather G. Stockwell, and doctoral student Vonetta Williams.

New York Times Interviews USF Public Health Expert on Stillbirths

Writers for the New York Times interviewed USF Faculty member Hamisu Salihu, MD, PhD, as a world expert on stillbirth for the April 1, 2008 article entitled “Seeking Answers to Stop Another Stillbirth”. The New York Times story appeared in the publication’s Personal Health section. Dr. Salihu, archer and Associate Professor of Epidemiology in the USF College of Public Health, was interviewed regarding the importance of fetal autopsies, given the limited research that exist to date on the causes of stillbirth.

March 16, 2008

Stephanie Kolar Presents Poster at International Conference

Stephanie Kolar, a doctoral student in Epidemiology, presented a poster titled Laboratory analysis of Staphylococcus aureus in Florida: January 1, 2003 to December 31, 2005 with an Emphasis on Methicillin Resistance” at the International Conference on Emerging Infectious Disease held in Atlanta, GA March 16-19, 2008. Other authors on the poster included: EPB Faculty member Dr. Aurora Sanchez-Anguiano; Epidemiology and Biostatistics Dual MPH student Shandey Malcolm; and Roger Sanderson, MS, RN, Regional Epidemiologist, Florida Department of Health, Bureau of Epidemiology.


Phone: (813) 974-3623 · Fax: (813) 974-4718 · Email: