Current & past international visiting scholars


Scholars include pre- and postdoctoral participants in UMSN's Visiting Scholars program.

Visiting Scholars

Current Scholars

  • Yiping Chen is a Ph.D. student from Shanxi Province, China. She is at UMSN for one year developing her dissertation research on promoting physical activity in the older adults with mild cognitive impairment. She is working with UMSN faculty Dr. Laura Struble , Dr. Janet Larson, and Dr. April Bigelow. Yiping arrived a few weeks ago, but she has already participated in activities around UMSN like the OGA's international social hour.

  • JungHsin (Stacy) Chang, a Registered Nurse from the Taichung Armed Forces General Hospital in Taiwan, is a visiting scholar for the 2022 Fall term. She is interested in the issues of nursing environment and quality improvement. Stacy, in collaboration with her mentor, Dr. Tschannen, is conducting research in the area of frontline nurse engagement in QI, with a primary focus of translating and validating the Nursing Quality Improvement in Practice tool. Her goal is to conduct a multisite study using this tool in Taiwan. In addition to the research experience, Stacy has fully engaged in UMSN, including auditing the graduate Quality and Safety course, participating in various academic seminars, and joining the English conversation circle held by ELI.
  • Joseph M. Sieka is a lecturer and deputy director for research at the University of Liberia’s Center for Teaching, Learning and Innovation. Dr. Sieka obtained his MD from Liberia’s only medical school and a Master of Medical Sciences degree in global health delivery from the Harvard Medical School. His research project focuses on increasing access and quality of maternal health services using the WhatsApp platform and a midwife-led obstetric triage in Liberia. He is in Ann Arbor for six months as a U-M African Presidential Scholar (UMAPS) collaborating with Dr. Jody Lori.

  • Dahae Rim Ph.D., RN joined the University of Michigan's International Visiting Scholars Program in 2021 and is funded by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF). Under the mentorship of Assistant Professor Clayton Shuman, PhD, MSN, RN, she is currently working on a research project titled "Development of a smart play program algorithm for children with disabilities." She is interested in using virtual reality to improve care for children with disabilities and their families. Dr. Rim is also participating in Dr. Shuman's research on improving care for vulnerable maternal-infant populations using team science approaches and designing and implementing innovative solutions (COVID19 M.A.M.A.S. of Color Study; Drugs, Art, and Babies for RNs Study; Together is Better Study: Integrating the NICU into LDRPs).
  • Zeynep Ozaslan, Ph.D., RN, PRP, joined University of Michigan's International Visiting Scholars Program in 2019 under the guidance of Professor Denise Saint Arnault, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, funded by an award from the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK). Ozaslan is currently working on a research project titled "The Clinical Ethnographic Narrative Interview: Help-seeking Process of Women Exposed to Violence and Cultural Determinants."

  • Mohammad A. Ottom is an associate professor at the IT faculty at Yarmouk University in Jordan. He obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Canberra in Australia. In 2021-2021, Dr. Ottom is a Fulbright Visiting Scholar, supported by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FFSB), in Washington, D.C. The Fulbright program aims to exchange knowledge, skills, and culture between Americans and other people from several countries; it is a prestigious and competitive grant. Dr. Ottom chose to join SOCR (Statistics Online Computational Resource) at the University of Michigan, working with Professor Ivo Dinov. 

    Dr. Ottom’s research focuses on machine learning and data science, particularly, the applications of data science and machine learning in healthcare and biomedical applications. His research project aims to utilize machine learning algorithms and artificial intelligence tools for cancer diagnosis and prognosis using medical images. He also works on auto-segmentation of neuroimaging data. Dr. Ottom is ultimately working on designing a more complex 3D AI-based image recognition and parcellation tools using deep neural networks. This requires building a framework of computational models for synthesizing realistic artificial medical images, which can be used to solve problems related to medical data shortages, identity protection, and simulation based clinical inference. Dr. Ottom may be reached at
  • Hanif Abdul Rahman, PhD, is an international visiting scholar at University of Michigan School of Nursing (2021-2022). He is also a lecturer of biostatistics and nursing at the Institute of Health Sciences, University Brunei Darussalam. Over the past 5 years, he has published more than 30 research papers in peer review journals that are focused on alleviating multi-faceted issue of quality of life in young adults and elderly populations. Currently, Dr. Rahman is mentored by Professor Ivo Dinov (Nursing/Bioinformatics/SOCR/MIDAS) in developing predictive models and machine learning techniques to classify mental well-being. This research targets university students and young adults in South-East Asia and examines salient indicators of healthy behaviors. Prolonged negative psychological well-being is a strong precursor and antecedent of the development of mental illness. These new models will be tested and validated as integral instruments of health promotion, well-being intervention, and digital health for early identification of at-risk students in university settings.
  • Elena Campillejo-Gutierrez is a candidate for the Doctorate in Nursing and Science at University of Barcelona. She is interested in cancer survivorship, quality of life and follow-up of long-term survivors. She is leading one of the first systematic reviews in the field focusing on interventions to improve sexual desire in female cancer survivors, with the mentorship of Dr. Noel Arring, a cancer symptom science researcher at UMSN. She works as a Clinical Research Nurse in the Phase 1 Functional Area at the Catalan Institute of Oncology and expects to complete her Doctorate in July 2023. She wishes to continue her postdoctoral research in the same area, and as a professor at the University of Barcelona. Elena enjoys spending quality time with her friends and family, hiking and traveling.

  • Amani Bayrakdar is a Ph.D. student at the Hariri School of Nursing in Lebanon and joined the University of Michigan's International Visiting Scholars Program in 2020 under the guidance of Assistant Professor Kevin Joiner, Ph.D., APRN, ANP-BC. Bayrakdar’s predoctoral research focuses on self-management of Type 1 diabetes among young adults in Lebanon. She also conducted a collaborative research project on Type 2 diabetes-related stigma among Hispanic adults in the U.S. During her research residency, Bayrakdar had the opportunity to participate in the Scientific Sessions of the American Diabetes Association and the Qualitative and Mixed Methods Learning Lab of the Michigan Mixed Methods program.
  • Rachele Bejjani is a Ph.D. student at the American University of Beirut (AUB) School of Nursing and joined the U-M School of Nursing’s International Visiting Scholar Program in fall 2020 under the guidance of Clinical Associate Professor Laura Struble, Ph.D., GNP-BC. Bejjani’s research has examined the dyadic determinants of patient health-related quality of life and caregiver burden in a sample of Parkinson’s disease patient-caregiver dyads residing in Lebanon.


Yi Zhou
School of Mathematical Science, Fudan University, Shanghai, China
Visiting scholar from July 1, 2017 to September 15, 2017
Mentor: Ivo Dinov

Zhao is a student of applied mathematics at Fudan University. She is interested in the use of statistics and data science to further health research objectives. Her project at UMSN is to examine how data mining can be used to predict emerging disease patterns, particularly Alzheimers. She expects to complete her Bachelor in Mathematics and Applied Mathematics in July 2018. She is active in cultural department of the Student Union at Fudan University, and enjoys sports, dance marathon, painting and photography.


  • Ms. Pimrat Thammaraksa (Thailand) -- Collaborated with her mentor to develop an intervention program to prevent multiple risk behaviors in male secondary school students.

  • Mr. Shambel Tarko Shiferaw (Ethiopia) -- Created a partnership between the University of Michigan School of Nursing and Aksum University in Ethiopia.

  • Ms. Nittaya Sukchaisong (Thailand) -- Created a program to help modify behaviors in patients with uncontrolled diabetes.

  • Ms. Jiachen Xu (China) -- Participated in the compressive big data analytics and inference (CBDA) project.

  • Dr. Ying Zhao (China) -- Focused on prenatal depression screening and psychological intervention in high-risk pregnancies. Dr. Ying Zhao was here as part of the donor-funded DeVries China Nursing Leadership Fellowship Fund.

  • Ms. Chunxia Liu (China) -- Researched U.S. hospice and palliative care programs. She was here as part of the donor-funded DeVries China Nursing Leadership Fellowship Fund.

  • Dr. Moonhee Gang (South Korea) -- Researched factors related to Korean women who seek support for mental health compared to Korean immigrant women in the United States.

  • Dr. Younhee Jeong (South Korea) -- Worked with Dr. Holden who was her Ph.D. advisor focusing on mechanisms of neuropathic pain.

  • Dr. Alain Mukwege (Democratic Republic of Congo) -- Worked with the Pelvic Floor Research Group at the School of Nursing.

  • Ms. Unraun Kaewphinit (Thailand) -- Focused on depressive symptoms among caregivers of persons with traumatic brain injury (TBI).

  • Dr. Khadizah binti Haji Abdul Mumin (Brunei Darussalam) -- Explored adolescent’s experiences of social issues and how they might affect their reproductive and sexual health.

  • Dr. Sayonara de Fatima Barbosa (Brazil) -- Studied how social media can foster professional connections and promote timely communication with patients and family members.

  • Dr. Boeun Kwon (South Korea) -- Studied cultural differences in nursing interventions between South Korea and the U.S.

  • Ms. Nootchayong Yaowapanon (Thailand) -- Studied the identification and development of community care models for stroke survivors.

  • Ms. Naoko Uemura (Japan) -- Studied cultural difficulties experienced by pregnant Japanese immigrants in the Detroit area and used this information to conduct a cross-cultural study of women.

  • Ms. Angelica Hao (Taiwan) -- Studied medical informatics and audited courses in nursing theory and research.

  • Ms. Fu-Mian Tsai (Taiwan) -- Conducted independent research on chronic kidney disease (CKD) and audited courses in nursing theory and research.

  • Mr. Luiz Sanches (Brazil) -- Completed a heuristic evaluation of a Brazilian healthcare technology and submitted several manuscripts for publication.

  • Mr. Mohamad Baydoun (Lebanon) -- Conducted a clinical practicum and studied patient safety and quality measures.

  • Dr. Zhiwen Wang (China) -- Studied social cognition among elderly patients as well as the use of nursing research in baccalaureate nursing curricula in China. She was here as part of the donor-funded DeVries China Nursing Leadership Fellowship Fund.

  • Ms. Yu-mei Sun (China) -- Studied physical assessment of older patients as well as the introduction of nursing research in master's-level nursing curricula in China. She was here as part of the donor-funded DeVries China Nursing Leadership Fellowship Fund.

  • Dr. Yuan-Mei Liao (Taiwan) -- Conducted research on continence disorders in women and participated in ongoing incontinence prevention and management interventions.

  • Ms. Cigdem Yucel (Turkey) -- Continued her research on obstetric and women’s health nursing and the childbirth process.

  • Ms. Jeeraporn Kummabutr (Thailand) -- Studied adolescent life skills development and designed interventions for parents and children that seek to build life skills. She completed four manuscripts which she hopes to publish in Thailand, as well as collected and analyzed data for her doctoral dissertation.

  • Dr. Feng Hui (China) -- Studied community health nursing teaching methods and curriculum development in order to bring best practices back to her home university. Also reviewed models for community health nursing practice and evaluation mechanisms for community health programs.

  • Ms. Suwwattana Kerdmuang (Thailand) -- Completed several courses in nursing and occupational health and safety. Also designed and implemented a research study identifying occupational health nursing competencies among Thai nurses working in primary care.

  • Ms. Sandra Patricia Platas Avendano (Mexico) -- Advanced her undergraduate studies and explored her interest in chronic disease research; including diabetes, obesity and hypertension.

  • Ms. Marianne Nieuwenhuijze (Netherlands) -- studied birth tape transcripts to explore birth positions and glean instructions given to women from their health providers.

  • Dr. Janya Chareonsuk (Thailand) -- Studied the factors that predict sexually risky behavior in adolescents.

  • Dr. Hye-Ryoung Kim (Korea) -- Studied chronic disease and related risk factors in the Korean elderly community at a time when the South Korean elderly population and the prevalence of chronic diseases are increasing.

  • Dr. Eun Joo Lee (Korea) -- Focused on efforts to improve nursing effectiveness, nursing classification systems, nursing shortages, and patient safety in Korea.

  • Ms. Lawan Singhasai (Thailand) -- Developed an intervention program designed to promote healthy eating and physical activity among overweight and obese school-aged children in Thailand.

  • Ms. Warunee Meecharoen (Thailand) -- Studied quality-of-life predictors for family caregivers of advanced-stage cancer patient.

  • Dr. Esther Gallegos (Mexico) -- Learned about multidisciplinary approaches to research in chronic illnesses with intention to draft preliminary ideas for a collaborative research project that may be submitted to the Fogarty International Center.

  • Dr. Maria Helena Larcher Caliri (Brazil) -- Researched methods for adapting intervention protocols for PU prevention at health institutions using a systems view and developed collaborative research partnerships.

  • Ms. Feng-Lien Lin (Taiwan, ROC) -- Explored theories and research methodologies related to patient safety and nursing care quality.

  • Ms. Piyanun Limruangrong (Thailand) -- Researched the effect of self-regulation programs on knowledge, self-care activities, blood glucose level, and pregnancy outcomes of pregnant women with gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM).

  • Ms. Soontaree Jianvitayakij (Thailand) -- Researched smoking cessation in adult smokers, focusing on determining the predictive factors influencing long-term smoking cessation.

  • Ms. Sudarat Pianchob (Thailand) -- Researched the adjustment made by families of patients with major depressive disorders.

  • Dr. Sunghee Kim (Korea) -- Worked to develop a health promotion program and a health promotion center for middle school students in Korea.

  • Dr. YuYu Jiang (China) -- Researched changing the behavior of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

  • Cigdem Yucel (Turkey) -- Studied clinical simulation models for obstetric and gynecologic care and collected data for her doctoral thesis on obstetric nursing in Turkey.

  • Martha Ofelia Valle Solis (Mexico) -- Took courses in health promotion/risk reduction and research methodologies. Collected data on HIV/AIDS prevention among at-risk Latino and Mexican youth.

  • Nuttanicha Baiya (Thailand) -- Studied health behaviors in adolescents with congenital heart disease (CHD) and collected data relevant to her doctoral thesis.

  • Wan-Ru Wu (Taiwan) -- Worked with Dr. Lisa Kane Low on issues surrounding maternity nursing in Taiwan.

  • Siriluck Kaewsriwong (Thailand) -- Studied sensory stimulation for persons with a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

  • Swakhon Tongdornbom (Thailand) -- Focused on factors influencing self-management in diabetes patients.

  • Yanhui Lio (China) -- Studied developments in the field of Nursing, compared nursing work, research, and education environments in the U.S. and China, and focused on elder care in a community setting.

  • Natchaya Palacheewa (Thailand) -- Focused on school-based smoking cessation programs for adolescents in her native Thailand.

  • Dr. Hai-Ou Xia (China) -- Dr. Hai-Ou Xia was here as part of the donor-funded DeVries China Nursing Leadership Fellowship Fund.

  • Yi Jin (China) -- Yi Jin was here as part of the donor-funded DeVries China Nursing Leadership Fellowship Fund.


Strengthening NCD Research and Training Capacity in Thailand visiting scholars

“Fogarty International Training Program for Strengthening Non-Communicable Research and Training Capacity in Thailand” is a 5-year National Institute of Nursing Research (NINR)/Fogarty-supported program. It offers a varied and integrated training plan in nursing, interdisciplinary, and health systems research aimed at improving prevention, primary care, and long-term chronic disease management.

Meet the trainees in this program.