Student Mentorship

Dr. Laing has mentored many students at University of Washington Tacoma, University of Washington Seattle and other academic institutions. During the mentorship process, the students have proceeded to present and publish research findings in the domain of technology and health promotion among disadvantaged communities.

2019 – 2020


Congratulations, Dr. Felstad!

I would like to congratulate Dr. Veronica Felstad on obtaining her PsyD degree from Antioch University Seattle; she participated in the virtual hooding on Sunday, June 14, 2020. The title of Veronica’s dissertation was Cultural Differences, Social Support, and Therapy Outcomes: A Comparative Study Between Individualist and Collectivist Cultures. She plans to apply her clinical psychology degree in her work with youth.

Veronica was an undergraduate student researcher with me and presented project findings at the National Conference of Undergraduate Research meeting in Lexington, Kentucky in 2014 (see photos above). I am very proud of your achievements, Veronica! Congrats!!

UW Tacoma Junior and Senior Students Awarded the Population Health Initiative Recognition Award from the UW Undergraduate Research Program, May 2020

I am pleased to announce that Lucas Bjorkheim (Junior) and Yusra Iftakhar (Senior) were awarded the Population Health Initiative Recognition Award by the UW Undergraduate Research Program for their work addressing physical activity and healthy eating among residents of rural communities. In the award letter, it was noted that the panel of judges felt that each of their submitted applications “distinguished itself from the more than 75 submissions received.”  Lucas and Yusra are two among 10 students from the UW to have received this honor in 2020. I am exceedingly proud of your accomplishments, guys! After graduation, Lucas wishes to pursue a medical science degree and Yusra wishes to pursue graduate studies in Public Health – congratulations on this great work guys!

Yusra Iftakhar (Senior)
Major: Healthcare Leadership
Project Title: Perceived Barriers to Healthy
Eating among Rural Communities

Lucas I. Bjorkheim (Junior)
Major: Biomedical Sciences               
Project Title: What stands in the way of physical activity?

UW Tacoma School of Nursing and Healthcare Leadership Seniors Awarded Prestigious Mary Gates Research Scholarship
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Myai Nguyen

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Anna L. Howard

Myai Nguyen and Anna Howard are UWT seniors, they are majoring in Healthcare Leadership, and they were recently named 2019-2020 Mary Gates Research Scholars. Myai and Anna are among a select number of undergraduate students across all three UW campuses voted by a committee of faculty and students to receive up to $5,000 in scholarship support. The Mary Gates Research Scholarships were established to provide undergraduate students with funding to focus on research projects with oversight and guidance provided by a faculty mentor. Myai and Anna will use the scholarships to pursue a Master of Public Health degree with a focus in Global Health and Epidemiology respectively. I am very proud of the accomplishments of Anna and Myai!

UW Tacoma Healthcare Leadership Students are Featured in the 2020 American Congress of Healthcare Executives Meeting Program
I am very excited to post that my undergraduate research assistants from 2019, Peter Wangigi and Jason Muncy are featured in this year’s Congress on Healthcare Leadership - American Congress of Healthcare Executives meeting program, showing their presentation at the 2019 meeting! See photo below and see link to program page (page 35/37),
This year’s meeting in Chicago is canceled due to our nation and global-level efforts to fight the covid-19. We are very proud of the work Peter and Jason did last year at the meeting. 

2019 – 2020 Student Research Assistants

The following UWT undergraduate students are currently working on research projects:

Lucas Bjorkheim, Biomedical Sciences

Title: What Stands in the Way of Physical Activity?

Anna L. Howard, Healthcare Leadership

Title: Improving Healthcare Delivery for Marginalized Patients in Safety-Net Clinics

Yusra Iftakhar, Healthcare Leadership

Title: Perceived Barriers to Healthy Eating in Rural Communities

Myai Nguyen, Healthcare Leadership

Title: Exploring Access to Care for Low-Income Communities

Jamie Root, Healthcare Leadership

Title: Analysis of Healthcare Experiences of Safety-Net Patients in Washington DC

2018 – 2019


Healthcare Leadership Students Present at the 62nd Congress of Healthcare Leadership Meeting in Chicago, March 2019
Peter Wangigi and Jason Muncy presented their research titled “Safety-Net Patients Use Mobile Devices for Healthcare Management and Clinicians See Value of Digital Technology to Improve Healthcare Outcomes: Patient Provider Findings” at the 62nd Congress on Healthcare Leadership in Chicago, Illinois, in March 2019
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Jason Muncy, Sharon Laing, and Peter Wangigi at the 2019 American Congress of Healthcare Executives meeting in Chicago, March 2019.

Healthcare Leadership Students Present Research at the 22 nd Annual UW Undergraduate

Research Symposium in Seattle, WA, May 2019

Peter Wangigi and Jason Muncy presented their research at the 22nd Annual UW Undergraduate Research Symposium in Seattle, WA, May 2019​

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Peter Wangigi and Jason Muncy standing with their posters at the 22nd Annual UW Undergraduate Research Symposium in Seattle, WA, May 2019

2018 – 2019 Student Research Assistants

The following students worked on projects and presented research during the 2018 – 2019 academic year

Peter Wangigi, (BAHCL, ’19) Healthcare Leadership

Title: Digital Healthcare Technologies and Access to Care for Diverse Underserved Communities

Jason Muncy, (BAHCL, ’19) Healthcare Leadership

Title: Healthcare Providers’ Perceptions of Utility of Digital Healthcare Management Tools