September 2016 Newsletter


Cohort Seven Applications Now Open

Do you know a doctoral student whose research focuses on preventing child maltreatment and promoting the health and well-being of children? Applications to join Cohort Seven of the Doris Duke Fellowships for the Promotion of Child Well-Being are now open! Doris Duke fellows receive an annual stipend, mentoring from academic and policy leaders, and opportunities to collaborate with an interdisciplinary group of like-minded doctoral students who are future leaders and change agents in the field of promoting child and family well-being. We encourage you to share this information with those in your networks who may be interested.

We will host an application webinar on Tuesday, Oct. 4, from 12:00-1:00 PM CST. The webinar content will focus on the purpose of the fellowship, eligibility, dissertation topics, performance expectations, mentor roles and expectations, and the application and selection processes. There will be ample time for questions. Register for the webinar here.

Please visit the Apply section of our website to download application materials, view frequently asked questions, and learn more about the fellowships. The deadline to apply for Cohort Seven is December 1, 2016. Please email with any questions.

Featured Fellow Interview: 

Dr. Tia McGill Rogers

Dr. Tia McGill Rogers, a Cohort Two Doris Duke Fellow, received her PhD in public health from the Georgia State University School of Public Health. She currently works as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Global Health and Population (GHP) at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Sarah Wagener, Fellowship Network Coordinator at Chapin Hall, connected with Tia in September to learn more about her postdoc experience at Harvard. 

Sarah Wagener (SW): What responsibilities do you have in this position?

Tia McGill Rogers (TMR): As an NIH Diversity Supplement-funded postdoctoral research fellow, my primary goal is to complete my proposed research project. It examines the role that religiosity and intimate partner relationships play in coping mechanisms used by former child soldiers and war-affected youth. In addition, my proposal includes activities directly related to developing skills in research development, data analysis, and instruction in order to pursue a successful independent research career.

SW: What projects are you currently working on?

TMR: The R01 parent study, which examines the intergenerational impact of war (PI: Theresa S. Betancourt), has been active since 2002. Currently, we have 3 waves of data and we are collecting wave 4 data. I monitor the incoming wave 4 data and further analyze waves 1-3 data to develop manuscripts.

SW: What are you learning in your current projects? Though GHP has a global focus, are there any take-aways from your current work that are relevant in the United States?

TMR: The short answer is. . . so very much! I am a member of the Harvard University Research Program on Children and Global Adversity (RPCGA). One of the most exciting things about working in the RPCGA is that I am learning, in a real-world setting, how to maximize mixed methods research to advance knowledge and positively impact the populations under study. With RPCGA, I am working with a research team that is stationed in Sierra Leone. This is the first time that I’ve worked on a team where my teammates are all located abroad. Political unrest, along with the recent Ebola outbreak, has severely weakened an already strained infrastructure in Sierra Leone. Our research has to be designed with these considerations in mind.

I think there are several ways the work I am doing in global health can be applied to working domestically. Our work in Sierra Leone is not conceived, carried out, and—in the case of intervention—implemented in isolation. We are focused on working collaboratively with partner agencies, cultural leaders, and within the broader political and community context. The same can be said for work that is carried out in the US.

SW: How has your Doris Duke Fellowships experience influenced your current work or collaborations?

TMR: I can truly say that I have met some of the most wonderful scholars during my time as a Doris Duke fellow. My goal is to approach my research from an interdisciplinary perspective; I am grateful to have the input of members from my fellowship cohort, as well as from previous and even subsequent cohorts. The peer network I developed has been such an important aspect of my journey through the PhD process and has enhanced my experience on the job market. I have no doubt that my Doris Duke fellowship peers will continue to be collaborators throughout my career.

SW: Do you have any advice for others who are interested in completing a postdoctoral fellowship?

TMR: One of the best pieces of advice I was given is to remember that the postdoctoral preparation period is about overall learning, growth, and preparation. While it is important to conduct research and to disseminate your work via publication and presentation, it is also important to take the opportunity to observe and develop skills in leadership and to get to know the process of conducting research in an academic setting.

Check Out Our New Website

The new Doris Duke Fellowships website allows viewers the chance to gain an in-depth understanding of the research interests of those in the fellowship network. Each cohort’s page on the website now includes specific information about the dissertation of each fellow in that cohort, allowing for an easier, at-a-glance understanding of that fellow’s research interests. This feature is designed to be useful to all viewers, whether you are a current fellow looking to connect with those similar research interests, a faculty member looking to hire a new member of your research team, or a prospective applicant interested in learning more about the breadth of research interests of those in our network.

If you have ideas for features you’d like to see on the website, or would like to update the information on your personal page on the website, please contact Sarah Wagener, Fellowship Network Coordinator, at

Doris Duke Fellowships Annual Meeting 2016

Dr. Deborah Daro, Fellowships Chair, presenting to Cohort Six Fellows.

Dr. Deborah Daro, Fellowships Chair, presenting to Cohort Six Fellows.

Earlier this month, current Doris Duke Fellows from Cohorts Five and Six came together in Chicago for the fellowships’ Annual Meeting. Each cohort spent two days at Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago getting to know one another and their research pursuits, listening to presentations from various experts across the field of child well-being, and participating in skill-building workshops. The in-person Annual Meeting in September and Mid-Year Meeting in March serve as foundations for the interdisciplinary collaborations that will exist for a fellow well beyond their time in a current fellowship cohort. The fellows left this year’s Annual Meeting feeling energized to continue their research and re-committed to interdisciplinary problem solving and finding policy solutions. The fellowship staff would like to thank Andres Alvear, Eric Brettschneider, Leah Gjertson, Deborah Gorman-Smith, Guanglei Hong, Neil Jordan, Lisa Lee-Herbert, Jen Matjasko, Arthur Reynolds, Mike Stiehl, and Felicity Vabulas for presenting during the Annual Meeting!

The fellowship staff continues to be impressed by the quality of research produced by fellows and inspired by their passion and dedication to improving the lives and well-being of children. We look forward to connecting with all current fellows, as well as graduated fellows, in March 2017 at the Mid-Year Meeting at Rutgers University!

Policy Update: Family First Prevention Services Act in the Senate

The Family First Prevention Services Act was passed in the House in June and is now being deliberated in the Senate during Congress’ final few weeks in session. The primary sponsors of the act wrote an op-ed this month describing the benefits of this act to vulnerable children and families. The Washington Post op-ed can be read here.

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Noteworthy Organizations:   NowPow and MAPSCorps

At the Doris Duke Fellowships Annual Meeting earlier this month, representatives from two connected organizations, NowPow and MAPSCorps, presented about their organizations on a social entrepreneurship panel. Led by Dr. Stacy Tessler Lindau at the University of Chicago, NowPow and MAPSCorps utilize an asset-based community development and collective social impact approach to help young people develop and to help connect community members to preventive services and treatment services within the healthcare system across the country.

MAPSCorps employs young people in a STEM training program where they gather information about the communities around them in order to power NowPow, a series of tools and an inventory of services and community resources that helps community members and providers connect to services they need in order to live healthy lives. Please visit the following websites to learn more about asset-based community development, MAPSCorps, and NowPow