InCHIP Lecture Series: Dwayne Proctor 9/27/18

Please join us for our next event in the Fall 2018 InCHIP Lecture Series!

“Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Journey to Achieve Health Equity”

Dwayne C. Proctor, PhD

Thursday, September 27, 2018

12:30 – 1:30pm

Dwayne Proctor, Ph.D. is senior adviser to the president of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Dr. Proctor came to RWJF in 2002 as a senior communications and program officer. His early work at RWJF focused on preventing adolescent and child health risks stemming from drinking, drugging, injuries and pregnancy. In 2006, Proctor was promoted to lead the Foundation’s highest priority–reversing the childhood obesity epidemic by 2015. In that capacity he leveraged resources by forging strong relationships with funders, government agencies, corporations and other key stakeholders. As senior adviser, Proctor builds new strategic relationships for RWJF and tracks the nation and the Foundation’s progress in achieving health equity.  Prior to joining the Foundation, Proctor was assistant professor at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine teaching health communications and health marketing. As a Fulbright Fellow in Senegal, West Africa, Proctor employed marketing, social science and epidemiological approaches to assess the effectiveness of HIV/AIDS public service announcements in raising awareness of AIDS as a national health problem. Dr. Proctor is the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the NAACP Foundation and an Ad Council advisor. He received his doctoral, master’s and bachelor’s degrees in marketing and communication science from the University of Connecticut.

Co-sponsored by:


About the InCHIP Lecture Series
The InCHIP Lecture Series provides an invaluable forum for researchers – at InCHIP, throughout the UConn community and beyond – to learn about new work in development by leading figures in health behavior change. The InCHIP Lecture Series also provides a venue for researchers to share late-breaking findings and identify emerging trends in health behavior research. For the current semester schedule, visit the InCHIP 2018-2019 Lecture Page.

NIH Career Development “K” Award Writing Group: Starts 9/24/18 @2PM


Are you planning on submitting a K-Award? We can help you as you write!

This program will provide peer and expert feedback, support, and accountability as you write your K-award proposal. The group will meet once a month and will provide opportunities for you to get feedback as you need it.

When you are ready to submit drafts, simply submit them via the Group’s Google Drive folder. There will be a folder for each meeting.


We will be kicking the group off during the Fall of 2018 and will be meeting on the following dates and times:

  • September 24,2018 @ 2PM
  • October 29th, 2018 @ 2PM
  • November 26th, 2018 @ 2PM
  • December 17th, 2018 @ 2PM


InCHIP’s Colloquium Room (Room 14) on the first floor of the Ryan Building. Directions to InCHIP can be found here.

Please note that we will not provide an option to participate remotely as these meetings are very interactive and we have found it incredibly difficult for participants to actively engage when participating remotely. We’re sorry for the inconvenience.


Sherry Pagoto image
This writing group is led by Sherry Pagoto, PhD

Dr. Pagoto is a Professor in the Department of Allied Health Sciences and Director of the UConn Center for mHealth and Social Media. Her research focuses on leveraging technology in the development and delivery of behavioral interventions targeting diet, physical activity, and cancer prevention behaviors.

She has had federal funding for her program of research for 15 consecutive years, totaling over $13 million, and has published 186 papers in peer-reviewed journals.

Dr. Pagoto has significant experience with K-awards, having been awarded a K23 (Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award) in 2003. She currently has a K24 (Mid-career Investigator Award in Patient-Oriented Research) for mentorship of junior investigators in social media and mhealth research.

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2018 CSCH Encore Conference and Networking 9/24/18

The second UConn Collaboratory on School and Child Health Encore Conference will be held at the Hartford Public Library on Monday, September 24, 2018, from 4-6 p.m.

The CSCH Encore conference provides an opportunity for participants to learn about work related to school and/or child health that affiliates have presented previously at an external conference. The event will include an poster “encore” session (meaning presenters share work they have already presented in another setting) and active networking. There will be a special opportunity to participate in an on-the-spot seed grant competition. Winners at this stage will be invited to apply for seed grants for up to $8,000. Refreshments will be provided.

The event is open to all people that are CSCH affiliates (faculty, postdocs, students, community partners) by the time of the event.

For more information, contact Helene Marcy.

InCHIP Lecture Series: Judson Brewer 9/13/18

Please join us for our first event in the Fall 2018 InCHIP Lecture Series!

“The Craving Mind: From Cigarettes to Smartphones, Why We Get Hooked and How Mindfulness can Help Break the Habit Cycle”

Judson Brewer, MD, PhD

Thursday, September 13, 2018 

Konover Auditorium, Dodd Center, Storrs Campus

12:30 – 1:30pm

Judson Brewer MD PhD is the Director of Research and Innovation at the Mindfulness Center and associate professor in psychiatry at the School of Medicine at Brown University. He also is a research affiliate at MIT. A psychiatrist and internationally known expert in mindfulness training for addictions, Brewer has developed and tested novel mindfulness programs for behavior change, including both in-person and app-based treatments for smoking, emotional eating, and anxiety (, He has also studied the underlying neural mechanisms of mindfulness using standard and real-time fMRI, and source-estimated EEG, and is currently translating these findings into clinical use. He has published numerous peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, presented to the US President’s Office of National Drug Control Policy, the Parliament of Canada, trained US Olympic coaches, been featured on 60 minutes, at TED (4th most viewed talk of 2016 with over 10 Million views), in Time magazine (top 100 new health discoveries of 2013), Forbes, Businessweek, NPR, National Geographic, and the BBC among others. He is the author of The Craving Mind: from cigarettes to smartphones to love, why we get hooked and how we can break bad habits (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2017).

Co-sponsored by:


About the InCHIP Lecture Series
The InCHIP Lecture Series provides an invaluable forum for researchers – at InCHIP, throughout the UConn community and beyond – to learn about new work in development by leading figures in health behavior change. The InCHIP Lecture Series also provides a venue for researchers to share late-breaking findings and identify emerging trends in health behavior research. For the current semester schedule, visit the InCHIP 2018-2019 Lecture Page.

CIRA Seeks Letters of Intent for its Annual Pilot Projects in HIV Research Program

CIRA currently seeks letters of intent for its annual Pilot Projects in HIV Research Program. Applicants must submit a one-page letter of intent by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, August 20, 2018. Full applications will be due on Monday, October 8, 2018.Download a PDF of the submission guidelines.

The goal of the program is to provide pilot funding to junior investigators, and/or support community-university research partnerships that will result in additional externally funded research projects. We will consider letters of intent for preliminary, formative, and/or feasibility studies that will inform the development of proposals for NIH or other external funding. Implementation Science (IS) is a central focus at CIRA and we expect to fund at least one IS project in this cycle. IS includes the study of whether activities or tools that have been shown to be effective in scientific studies work in the real world, and/or the factors that inhibit or facilitate the implementation of such programs.

CIRA is most interested in supporting pilot projects that study populations at highest risk of HIV infection and studies focused on reducing disparities in HIV incidence, prevalence and outcomes among marginalized populations, including those with common co-morbidities such as substance use and mental health disorders. Research that focuses exclusively on the basic biology of HIV or research to develop new HIV treatments will not be considered.

CIRA plans to fund up to three projects in this cycle with a maximum award for individual projects of $30,000. Projects must be completed within 12 months of the award.

Letter of Intent:
Applicants must submit a one-page letter of intent by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, August 20, 2018. This letter should include a descriptive title of the proposed project, a one paragraph description of the project, and the names and contact information of all key personnel. If you have any questions, please contact Linda Niccolai via email (

Application Process:
Applicants are required to submit a letter of intent. Our invitation for you to submit a full application will be contingent upon (1) the project’s alignment with CIRA’s mission, (2) the feasibility of the project, and (3) the potential for the project to lead to a larger research study funded by the National Institutes of Health or other granting agency. Full applications will be due on Monday, October 8, 2018. It is strongly recommended that applicants with a specific interest in developing an Implementation Science study consult with IS mentors at CIRA in developing their application. Additionally, pilot project applicants must submit their IBR request in advance, as part of the full application.

Emerging and new investigators (including Post-Doctoral Students, Research Associates, and Assistant Professors) at Yale University, The Institute for Community Research (ICR), and the Institute for Collaboration on Health, Intervention, and Policy (InCHIP) at UConn are eligible to apply as PIs. A senior researcher is allowed to participate as a mentor on the project. Investigators from other universities or colleges and community-based organizations are eligible to apply in collaboration with a Principal Investigator based at Yale, ICR, or InCHIP. It is our expectation that awardees will hold an appointment at one of these institutions for at least one year past the award date.

Letter from Jeff Fisher June 18, 2018

Dear InCHIP Affiliates, Principal Investigators, and Staff:

This is a good-bye message from me as InCHIP Director, although I will have an office on the second floor of Ryan for the next few years. Starting July 1, Amy Gorin and her team will be running the show at InCHIP, and I will step down from my administrative role.

I’ve been privileged to be the founding Director of InCHIP and its predecessors, the UConn AIDS Risk Reduction Project (ARRP) and the UConn Center for Health, Intervention and Policy (CHIP). Due to all of you, its remarkable affiliates, PIs, staff, and Associate Directors, InCHIP and its predecessors have accomplished a tremendous amount. We started out with a small number of affiliates in just two disciplines (see photo below), and now have about 400, spanning almost every school and college at UConn, and more than 60 other institutions.

(From Left) William Fisher (University of Ontario), Michael Copenhaver, Jeff Fisher, Seth Kalichman, Leslie Snyder, Blair Johnson, Kerry Marsh, , Bede Agocha, and Deborah Cornman.

We’ve performed research that has improved the public health in important ways in the US and globally. In the process, since 2002, we obtained $160 million in external grant funding, and generated $40 million in indirect cost returns to UConn. We’ve worked to support the success of many fabulous UConn researchers and recruited remarkable faculty to join InCHIP from other institutions. We also recruited the Rudd Center to move to InCHIP from Yale, and the Center for mHealth and Social Media to move to InCHIP from U. Mass Medical Center.

It has been a wonderful opportunity for me, along with a cast of many extremely talented academics and administrative colleagues, to have had a role in our evolution. We have done things we never thought would be possible, and for that I am very proud. Being the founding Director of InCHIP has been one of the greatest privileges of my professional life. After I retire on September 1, I look forward to interacting with all of you in my new phase of life. I’ll continue my passion of studying vexing problems that occur when folks do not behave in the best interest of their health. I love understanding the dynamics of such behavior and designing theory-based interventions to help people change. I don’t think I could be happy without playing at least a bit in this fascinating sandbox. I’ll be writing some grants, helping UConn find global partners for health research, doing some mentoring, and consulting on how to build successful Centers and Institutes elsewhere. Consulting is very different from directing a Center or Institute day after day, year after year. It’s more like being a grandparent—you visit, enjoy, and leave after a few days!

I want to thank all the many folks who worked with me on my research over the years, beginning before we received NIH funding for ARRP– from 1975 to 1989. It was impossible to pay you, but you believed in what we were doing, and that was somehow enough. Many fabulous colleagues, graduate students, post-docs and professional employees worked with me from 1989-2014 on my NIH grants with Bill Fisher. You deserve great credit for our scientific accomplishments.

I deeply thank everyone within and outside of the Institute who made InCHIP and its predecessors possible. Outside of InCHIP, several Vice Presidents of Research, Provosts, and Vice Provosts have been extremely supportive. Skip Lowe and then Provost John Petersen worked closely with me to initially obtain UConn funding for the Center in 2002. Most relevant to the present context, I am grateful to all of those who worked with me to build InCHIP and its predecessors. Over the years there have been too many of you to mention individually, but I am extremely grateful to each of you. Deborah Cornman has been Associate Director since we began and contributed a great deal to our progress. Vasinee Long worked with us for many years, has passed away, and is fondly remembered. Melissa Stone has been with us from the start in many different critical roles. Steve Jagielo, AnnMarie White, Lynne Hendrickson, Grace Morris, Aaron Plotke, Melanie Skolnick and Josh Hardin contribute greatly to the finest administrative team anywhere. Because of these folks, our Associate Directors, and our affiliates and PIs, InCHIP is widely considered one of UConn’s crown jewels.

After sixteen years in an administrative role, it’s a pleasure to pass the administrative torch to Dr. Amy Gorin. I’m delighted that InCHIP will have a new Director with such vision and talent. I wish Amy every success in running this remarkable Institute which all of you helped to build. I’ve loved working with you and serving as founding InCHIP Director. I look forward to interacting with you after my retirement on September 1 in my new role as active InCHIP affiliate, health promotion researcher, consultant, extremely attentive parent and grandparent, and leisurely world traveler!

With affection,

“K” Career Development Award Seminar May 7th


Post-doctoral fellows and junior faculty are eligible for NIH K Research Career Development Awards which are 4-5 year awards that support mentored research and training. K awards have higher funding rates than R grants and assist junior investigators in developing an independent program of research.

This seminar will provide an overview of the K award mechanism including:

  • 1) Discuss who qualifies for K award, the different types of Ks,
  • 2) the steps to prepare and apply (key sections of the K application)
  • 4) how to build a mentorship team,
  • 5) other strategic advice to increase competitiveness for a K.


May 7th from 12-1:30PM


InCHIP’s Colloquium Room (First Floor)


Post-Doctoral Fellows and Junior Faculty (with no more 4 years of postdoctoral research experience)


Professor of Allied Health Sciences, Director of the UConn Center for mHealth and Social Media, and mentor on numerous K awards will lead this seminar. She earned a K23 in 2003 to develop her program of research which has since attracted over $11M in federal funding.

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