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Pre and Postdoctoral Training
T32 - Health of Older Minorities


Training Program Director
Rebeca Wong, PhD

Training Program Co-Director
Kyriakos S. Markides, PhD

Funded by the National Institute on Aging, this program provides training for predoctoral and postdoctoral researchers interested in studying the health of older minorities, particularly older Hispanics.

Pre and postdoctoral fellows collaborate with Center faculty who have more than $57 million in research pertaining to minority health and aging in the areas of health disparities, aging trajectories, medical outcomes, health service utilization, social epidemiology, rehabilitation, psychosocial stress and health promotion.

Mentoring teams provide expert guidance in an environment proven to maximize progress toward independent researcher status.  Funded investigators include sociologists, economists, demographers, physicians, epidemiologists, and statisticians. 

Aging-related research initiatives at UTMB include:

Pre and postdoctoral trainees have the opportunity to present research at annual events like the Sealy Center on Aging's Annual Forum on Aging and the Clinical & Translational Research Forum.

Fellows receive additional funding for travel and training expenses in addition to the NIH stipend level, as well as full health care benefits. 


Participating Faculty

  • Soham Al Snih, MD, PhD
  • Jacques Baillargeon, PhD
  • Abbey Berensen, MD, PhD
  • Melanie de Boer, PhD
  • Nai-Wei Chen, PhD
  • Brian Downer, PhD
  • Karl Eschbach, PhD
  • James S. Goodwin, MD
  • James Graham, PhD, DC
  • Bret Howrey, PhD
  • Kristofer Jennings, PhD
  • Daniel Jupiter, PhD
  • Sapna Kaul, PhD
  • Yong-Fang Kuo, PhD
  • Kyriakos Markides, PhD
  • Miriam Mutambudzi, MPH, PhD
  • Kenneth J. Ottenbacher, PhD
  • Monique Pappadis, PhD, MEd
  • M. Kristen Peek, PhD
  • John Prochaska, DrPH
  • Mukaila Raji, MD, MSC
  • Timothy Reistetter, PhD, OTR
  • Gulshan Sharma, MD, MPH
  • Heidi Spratt, PhD
  • Phani Veeranki, DrPH, MBBS
  • Elena Volpi, PhD, MD
  • Susan Weller, PhD
  • Rebeca Wong, PhD
  • Dong Dong Zhang, PhD



This opportunity is open to predoctoral and postdoctoral students interested in aging research. Candidates from all backgrounds are encouraged to apply. All applications will be reviewed by the Training Grant Selection Committee and applicants may be invited to interview.

Legal Status

Applicants must be citizens of the U.S. or permanent residents

Trainee Benefits

  • Additional funds to cover tuition and fees for relevant courses and other training related expenses
  • Full health care benefits
  • Predoctoral fellows - Earn a PhD degree in Population Health Sciences or Clinical Science (Health Services Research) in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, or other doctoral programs at UTMB

Application Components

  • Application Form (PDF)
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Letter stating research interests, relevant prior training
  • Send all applications materials to: Kelley Prevou, Research Project Manager, (409) 266-9649, kaprevou@utmb.edu

Current & Past Trainees

Current Predoctoral Trainees

  • Monica Hernandez
    2018 - Present
  • Paige Birkelbach
    2017 - Present
  • Camille Brightwell
    2017- Present

Past Predoctoral Trainees

  • Catherine Hay
    2017 - 2018
  • Robert Buschmann
    2015 - 2017
  • Figaro Loresto
    2014 - 2017
  • Benjamin Vickers
    2014 - 2017
  • Joseph Saenz
    2011 - 2016
  • Lawrence Panas
    2011 - 2013
  • Thuy Quynh Do
    2010 - 2012
  • Kristen Sheffield
    2008 - 2010
  • Bret Howrey
    2005 - 2008
  • Julie Kutac
    2007 - 2009
  • Jackie Hirth
    2006 - 2008
  • Meredith Masel
    2005 - 2007
  • Ina Bawaya
    2004 - 2006

Current Postdoctoral Trainees

  • Sadaf Milani
    2018 - present

Past Postdoctoral Trainees

Postdoctoral Trainee Training Period Faculty Mentor Current Position
Marc Garcia 2016 - 2018 Dr. Wong Assistant Professor
Department of Sociology
University of Nebraska
Brian Downer 2014 - 2016 Dr. Wong Assistant Professor
Division of Rehabilitation Sciences
University of Texas Medical Branch
Preeti Zanwar 2012 - 2014 Dr. Goodwin Professor
Department of Mathematical Science
University of Houston-Clear Lake
Sunshine Rote 2012 - 2014 Dr. Markides Assistant Professor
Kent School of Social Work
University of Louisville
Maria Monserud 2010 - 2012 Dr. Wong Assistant Professor
Department of Sociology
University of Texas at Houston
Bret Howrey 2010 - 2011 Dr. Goodwin Assistant Professor
Department of Family Medicine
University of Texas Medical Branch
Holley Beard 2008 - 2010 Dr. Wong Head
Office of Affordable Housing Research
Ohio State Housing Finance Agency
Kristen Gerst 2008 - 2010 Dr. Wong Assistant Professor
Institute of Gerontology
University of Georgia
Frank Lemus 2008 - 2010 Dr. Freeman External Affairs
Covered California Healthcare Exchange
Sacramento, California
Jennifer Tovar 2006 - 2008 Dr. Markides Assistant Professor
University of Texas School of Public Health
Ivonne Berges 2005 - 2007 Dr. Peek Assistant Professor
Department of Epidemiology & Public Health
University of Maryland
Patricia Harrington 2006 - 2007 Dr. Freeman Acting Director of Health Technology Assessment
Health Information & Quality Authority
Dublin, Ireland
Vinod Kaushik 2005 - 2006 Dr. Al Snih Assistant Professor
Dept. of Internal Medicine-Geriatrics
University of Texas Medical Branch
James Stimpson 2004 - 2006 Dr. Eschbach Associate Professor
Department of Surgery
University of Texas Medical Branch
Site managed by UTMB Sealy Center on Aging • Last Updated: January 2019