Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing

Seema S Aggarwal, PhD, RN, AGNP-C

PARTNERS Research Scholar
Assistant Professor

Dr. Aggarwal’s research interest focuses on impaired cognition and short- and long-term recovery in patients who have experienced acquired brain injuries including stroke and mild traumatic brain injuries. Dr. Aggarwal’s current stroke research includes studies that examine vascular predictors of cognitive decline and dementia such as MarkVCID, Determinants of Incident Stroke Cognitive Outcomes and Vascular Effects on RecoverY (DISCOVERY), Cameron County Hispanic Cohort study in collaboration with the UTHealth School of Public Health at Brownsville, Texas, and the Clinical Outcome and Patient Factors in Patient’s outcomes admitted to inpatient rehabilitation facility (COPOR) study. Her current concussion research examines gender differences in concussion recovery by using diffusion tensor imaging and biomarkers. She is currently developing research that uses gaming and virtual reality technology for remote cognitive rehabilitation in patients with acquired brain injuries.

Emily A Barr, PhD, RN, CPNP-PC, CNM

Assistant Professor

Dr. Barr’s research focuses on young adults transitioning from adolescent to adult HIV care, pregnant and post-partum women living with HIV, patient-provider trust, engagement in care, vaccine uptake, and telehealth used as an intervention to support linkage and retention in care. Furthermore, she is interested in studying ways telehealth could facilitate the treatment and prevention of substance use and misuse in people living with and at risk for HIV.

Jennifer E S (Sanner) Beauchamp, PhD, RN, FAAN

Nancy B. Willerson Distinguished Professor in Nursing
Associate Professor

Dr. Beauchamp directs the UTHealth Institute for Stroke and Cerebrovascular Disease’s Mental Health Program. Under her leadership, the program develops new areas of research in post-stroke mental health recovery, promotes collaborative multi-disciplinary teams, and engages trainees across disciplines. Specifically, Dr. Beauchamp is generating evidence in biobehavioral determinants of health by targeting neuropsychiatric health to improve health and symptom outcomes for those living within the confines of cardio- and cerebrovascular diseases. She has many publications highlighting the presence of psychosocial stressors and associated heightened cardio- and cerebrovascular risks in individuals diagnosed with acute coronary syndromes or stroke. Dr. Beauchamp research currently emphasizes the importance of developing effective behavioral interventions, supports, and therapies to improve the management, education, and support services for stroke survivors and their informal caregivers.

Veronica J Brady, PhD, RN, FNP-BC, BC-ADM, CDCES

Assistant Professor

Dr. Brady’s major area of research interest is diabetes, cancer, and HIV. She has published several articles in peer-reviewed journals, and is the author of a book chapter on Endocrine Toxicities in Chemotherapy and Immunotherapy Guidelines and Recommendations for Practice.

Stacey Crane, PhD, RN, CPON

Assistant Professor

Pediatric oncology, patient-reported outcomes, clinical trial management, nursing informatics

Deniz N Dishman, PhD, DNAP, CRNA

Assistant Professor

Dr. Dishman’s current research investigations examine adverse events related to in-office sedation for pediatric dental procedures through collaboration with the UTH School of Dentistry, and acute and chronic pain management in stroke survivors through collaboration with the UT Institute for Stroke and Cerebrovascular Disease.

Maja Djukic, PhD, RN, FAAN

John P. McGovern Distinguished Professor in Nursing
Associate Professor

Nursing workforce; health professions education; quality and safety.

Joan C Engebretson, DrPH, AHN-BC, RN, FAAN

Professor Emerita

Culture, health promotion, health practices /behaviors and beliefs, complementary/integrative therapies, Maternal child and woman’s health

Sandra K Hanneman, PhD, RN, FAAN

Jerold B. Katz Distinguished Professor for Nursing Research

Dr. Hanneman’s clinical focus is critically ill patients at risk for pulmonary complications. Her research focus is circadian rhythms, measurement, and clinical biomarkers.

Daphne C Hernandez, PhD, MSEd, FAAHB

Lee and Joseph Jamail Distinguished Professor in the School of Nursing
Associate Professor

Food insecurity, housing instability and homelessness, health of Hispanic immigrant families, barriers to physical activity and nutrition, obesity.

Constance M Johnson, PhD, MS, RN, FAAN

Maria C. and Christopher J. Pappas Family Distinguished Chair in Nursing
Lee and Joseph Jamail Distinguished Professor
Associate Dean for Research

Consumer Health Informatics/eHealth; Human-computer interaction; Health Promotion and Disease Prevention; Biobehavioral Research

Carina Katigbak, PhD, RN, ANP-BC, FAHA

Associate Professor

Cardiovascular health promotion amongst vulnerable populations, immigrant health, caregiver support.

Melanie M McEwen, PhD, RN, CNE, ANEF, FAAN

Distinguished Teaching Professor

Nursing education curriculum development; spiritual nursing care; immunizations and immunization policy; and school-based management of asthma.

Nikhil S Padhye, PhD


Dr. Padhye is interested in assessment of complexity of physiological systems through measurement of entropy of time series data. His work in this focus area has shown that lower levels of entropy of abdominal temperature signals are associated with the occurrence of pressure injuries in nursing facility residents.

Cathy L Rozmus, PhD, RN, FNAP, FAAN

PARTNERS Professor
Vice Dean for Academic Affairs

Dr. Rozmus’s research interests include health behavior decision making, cancer symptoms, and health professions education.

Diane M Santa Maria, DrPH, MSN, RN, PHNA-BC, FSAHM, FAAN

Jane and Robert Cizik Distinguished Chair
Huffington Foundation Endowed Chair in Nursing Education Leadership
Dean, Cizik School of Nursing

HIV/STI prevention, youth experiencing homelessness, mindfulness based interventions, substance use, mental health, and social determinant of health among youth.

Meagan Whisenant, PhD, RN

Assistant Professor

Her current focus is to improve cancer patient outcomes by developing a program of research focused on describing the symptom burden of cancer and methods for implementing routine symptom monitoring and management in cancer care using PRO measures. She is working on determining whether clinical, demographic, or genetic factors may distinguish symptom trajectory groups as well as modeling symptom trajectories in various cancer populations. Identifying distinct symptom trajectories and describing correlates of those trajectories may assist clinicians in targeting symptom management strategies for those most at risk for moderate or severe symptom experiences. Symptom monitoring and management has demonstrated improved cancer patient outcomes, yet best practices have not been established. Collection of symptom data is complicated by the dynamic nature of symptoms, the need for complex data management systems, and the timing of cancer symptoms, which often occur in the home setting and are not reported to clinicians. The use of disease-specific validated questionnaires in capturing PROs is critical for facilitating individualized symptom monitoring, management and treatment decisions. Dr. Whisenant is studying methods for capturing symptom-related data using PRO measures and studying patient-provider communication about symptoms in the outpatient setting.

Geri L Wood, PhD, RN, FAAN

Bette P. Thomas Distinguished Professor in Innovative Health Care Delivery
Director, PhD Program

Oncology, Pediatrics and Adult, Symptom management

Chao Hsing Yeh, PhD, RN, FAAN

Jane and Robert Cizik Distinguished Chair

Dr. Yeh's research program focuses on advancing the science of non-pharmacological pain treatments, with a special focus on the mechanisms, efficacy, and implementation of auricular point acupressure (APA) to manage pain and cancer-related symptoms.