Skip to Content

Recipients of the 2016 Jefferson Public Citizens Awards

JPC Group: Sally Aul, Dawit Ayalew, David Calvillo, Matthew Johnson, Tensae Woldesellasie
Faculty Advisor: Anselmo Canfora
Community Partner: Macedonains Humanitarian Association
Project Title: Initiative reCOVER 2016:
 Multipurpose Facility for Macedonians Humanitarian Organization, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
The 2016 Initiative reCOVER focuses on the design of a combined temporary housing facility, cafeteria and medical clinic that will serve the elderly and disabled homeless population of Ethiopia. This facility will be owned and operated by the Macedonians Humanitarian Association, one of the only indigenous Ethiopian charitable organizations that serves this vulnerable population. Research will focus on passive design techniques appropriate to the environment and existing precedents and construction techniques in Ethiopia.

JPC Group: Taturah Byron, Audrey Ogendi, Emmanuel Agyemang-Dua, Jean-Philippe Nau, Saron Fantahun
Faculty Advisor: Jeanita Richardson
Community Partner: Director of Community-based Health Services ( Ministry of Health & Ministry of Education)
Project Title: Empowering Youth as Health Promotion Ambassadors though the Healthy Youths Promoting Advocacy and Wellness ( H.Y.P.A.W)

In collaboration with the Ministries of Health and Education in St. Kitts and Nevis, our assessment of self-reported teen health perceptions aims to improve the implementation of the Federation’s Millennium Development Goals. The assessment will facilitate implementation by revealing significant health-related concerns that will inform the design and sustainability of our proposed peer-health education curriculum. We hypothesize that curricular development informed by an analysis of the WHO GSH survey will advance community health advocacy.

JPC Group: Kate Donovan, Taisiya Novopachennaia, Christina Stiebris, Victoria Adewale
Faculty Advisor: James Plews-Ogan
Community Partner: Blue Ridge Care Connection for Children
Project Title: Improving the function and participation of children with medical complexity: a novel BME/SOM partnership

Children with complex medical needs face substantial challenges. To overcome these challenges, providers take an interdisciplinary approach that is driven by technological innovation and centered on the needs of the patient and family. However, these children remain underserved because the delivery of care falls short of this comprehensive approach. Our team of biomedical engineers, medical professionals, and community partners will develop interventions that better allow these children engage in the hospital, home, and community settings.

JPC Group: Edgard Espinoza Fernandez, Sean Patrick Rumage, Thomas Parks Remcho
Faculty Advisor: David Edmunds
Community Partner: Dr. Hailu Araya, Best Practices Association
Project Title: Using Co-Design to Foster Technical Innovation through Solar Grid Integration in Tahtay Maychew, Ethiopia

At the request of the Best Practices Association, Prolinnova, and the University of Aksum, our team intended to integrate renewable energy into irrigation systems designed and built by a network of farmer innovators. The goal was to make the irrigation systems more effective, particularly in difficult terrain, without compromising farmers’ central role in making technical and managerial decisions about what the system should look like. Instead, due to the collaborative design method, which focuses on including the end users of a project from its conception until its completion, our project resulted in a valuable knowledge exchange about solar power and local farming practices as well as new sources of light and heat for two villages that previously had no access to electricity. This outcome was the result of constant communication and input from the local farmers and organizations that knew the community’s needs best and therefore shaped the project to deliver the most impactful solutions to the problems at hand, exemplifying the constructive, effective nature of collaborative design.

JPC Group: Maria Faidas, Sarah Macadam, Andrea Myers, Courtney Rogers
Faculty Advisor: Rupa Valdez
Community Partner: Williamson Health & Wellness Center, Inc.
Project Title: Community Oriented Health Logistics (COHL): Implementing a mHealth Project in Williamson, WV

Community Oriented Health Logistics (COHL) is a diverse group of students designing ways to improve health outcomes through the use of mobile technology in Mingo Count, West Virginia. In 2015, we focused on buidling community partnerships and assessing the feasibility of using mobile health technology in this rural area. In 2016, we will be developing and implementing a culturally appropriate mobile application, designed with input from the commmunity and targeted at increading youth awareneess of and involement in helath related activities.

JPC Group: Amanda Gaylord, Evelyn Stinger, Kelly McCain, Catherine Reynolds, Courtney Hill
Faculty Advisor: James Smith
Community Partner: University of Venda
Project Title: Baseline Testing of the Health Effects of the MadiDrop in Limpopo Province, South Africa

We propose a study in the Limpopo Province of South Africa to create a baseline evaluation of the health effects of the MadiDrop, a water-purification disk previously tested in South Africa and Tanzania by Uva Professor James Smith. Working with the University of Venda and community health workers, we will make regular visits into communities of Limpopo to gather data aout the water quality and health status of children, as well as to educate about the benefits of the MadiDrop technology.

JPC Group: Justis Midura, Cara Broshkevitch, Mary Crosier, Margaret Haltom, Danial Hussain
Faculty Advisor: Dana Elzey
Community Partner: Bridges to Community
Project Title: Seeking Water Purification in Pijivaye, Nicaragua: A Needs-Based Assessment of Rural Human-Water Interaction

In partnership with Bridges to Community, our team will travel to Pijivaye, Nicaragua, to develop and propose a system to improve community access to potable water. Team members will partner with local leaders to perform a needs-based assessment using Participatory Rural Appraisal methods. We will apply a systems dynamics study to propose a water purification system that addresses the expressed concerns of Pijivaye community members.

JPC Group: Avery Moyler, Maggie Gratz, Hunter Hewlett
Faculty Advisor: David Edmunds
Community Partner: Cambodian Center for Study and Development in Agriculture (CEDAC)
Project Title: Enhancing Vertical Communication and Local Farmer Involvement in Administrative Affairs within CEDAC

This initiative builds on existing University connections with CEDAC, an organization facilitating farmer-led research in Cambodia. We will work with local farmers and administrators to identify barriers to farmer-administrator communication. We will provide comprehensive solutions to these barriers through observation of communication flow and analysis of interviews with administrators, field representatives, farmer organization leaders, and farmers. We aim to facilitate vertical communication within CEDAC to expand its capacity to meet farmers’ needs.

JPC Group: Brianne Nueslein, Katie Lang, Perrin Falkner, Adjoa Akowuah,
Faculty Advisor: Ellen Bassett
Community Partner: University of Cape Town
Project Title: A Case for Co-Design: Exploring the need for participatory methods in upgrading slum shack infrastructure

In support of the United Nations and South Africa's endorsed approach for slum upgrading, the following JPC will utilize participatory design methods to redevelop the collapsing shack infrastructure of a community center located in an African township called Khayelitsha, in Cape Town, South Africa. Through this service project and research we hope to better understand how the built physical and sociocultural environment promotes or discourages building community in upgrading settlements.

JPC Group: Paola Sanchez Valdez, Amy Singer, Stephanie Davis, Kerri Anderson, Katelyn Foltz
Faculty Advisor: Melissa Levy
Community Partner: Unidad Educativa Capitan Alfonso Arroyo
Project Title: Fostering Leadership through Mentoring: Adapating YWLP in Ecuador

Using the UVA Young Women Leaders Program (YWLP) model, YWLP Ecuador will connect middle school and high school girls in Quito, Ecuador, for a year of mentoring, with the aim of empowering girls to be leaders. Using the YWLP Nicaragua program handbook as a foundation, we will collaborate with faculty and students at La Unidad Educativa,Capitán Alfonso Arroyo to design a program that best meets the needs of the adolescent girls there.

JPC Group: Sajala Shukla, Samyuktha Srinivasan, Nivedha Kannapadi, Rohan Sharma, Shannon Romutis
Faculty Advisor: Rajesh Balkrishnan
Community Partner: Rachana Society for Social Reconstruction
Project Title: Project GIRL: Growth in Reproductive Learning

This project seeks to measure understanding of and change in attitudes towards sexual and reproductive health and rights in adolescent girls attending high schools in Mulshi, India after undergoing an integrated educational program. The project team will work with the Rachana Society for Social Reconstruction to develop culturally-appropriate and engaging learning modules, the effectiveness of which will be assessed using pre- and post-quizzes, semi-structured interviews, surveys, and collaborative discussions with students.

JPC Group: Shontell White, Mary Hemenway, Alysee Dowdy, Sierra Leickert, Abigail Osei
Faculty Advisor: Edith Lawrence
Community Partner: Charlottesville High School and Albemarle High School
Project Title: YWLP High School

The focus of this continuation project is to help local high school girls build meaningful relationships with one another through YWLP High School, a peer mentoring program that focuses on enhancing their leadership skills and independent thinking. Through the development of and participation in co-created leadership projects and group activities, participating high school girls will develop a community of support that will promote their academic success and social competence during high school.

JPC Group: Christopher Williams, Rachel Pugh, Katherine Sublett, Rebekah Leary
Faculty Advisor: Christopher Hulleman
Community Partner: Charlottesville and Albemarle High Schools
Project Title: Wise Interventions and the Transition to High School

Drawing from research surrounding the tumultuous transition from middle school to high school, Wise Interventions and the Transition to High School project will research, design, and implement a social belonging pilot intervention targeting ninth grade girls in the YWLP High program. This intervention is intended to reduce some of the negative consequences observed during the transition to high school, such as academic difficulties, social and emotional problems, and in some cases, school dropout.

Previous Recipients:

2015 Recipients
2014 Recipients
2013 Recipients
2012 Recipients
2011 Recipients
2010 Recipients
2009 Inaugural Recipients