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Dr. El-Masri and OS Students

Social Factors in Health Care

Third year nursing students Heather Schreiner and Jennifer Hammel have been pleasantly surprised by their experience in the Outstanding Scholars program over the last two years. Under the supervision of Dr. Maher El-Masri, Heather and Jennifer have contributed to multiple large-scale projects involving social factors and their affect on health care. Last year, the pair had the opportunity to jump in on a research project involving the effect of social material factors on access to healthcare in the Windsor-Essex region. The girls put their classroom-taught research principles into action when they spent time in the emergency rooms at Windsor-Essex hospitals conducting surveys to gather this information. Dr. El Masri noted that he was “very impressed with the dedication and knowledge the girls brought to the project”-and because of this he proposed that they collaborate with the rest of the project team to develop a presentation for the UWill Discover 2018 Conference. The girls were especially thankful they were for this opportunity because it helped them realize how significant their work was-“we did more than we thought we did”, Heather explained.

This year, Heather and Jennifer are contributing to a new project related to the reversibility of type II diabetes through resilience training. The girls are currently conducting research and forming a pilot study, from which the direction of the project will be determined. Jennifer explained, “this is something we don’t want to stop working on. Even when the Outstanding Scholars program is over for us, we want to continue to move this forward with Dr. El-Masri. This area of research is important to us and it’s personal-people who do not need to be suffering should not be suffering.”