Student spotlight: Jennifer Maizel

Maizel, JenniferJennifer Maizel, M.P.H., CHES, is a new Ph.D. student in public health: social and behavioral sciences at UF’s College of Public Health and Health Professions. Her research interests focus on the psychosocial aspects of diabetes, primarily Type 1, which she was diagnosed with at the age of 13.

Specifically, she aims to understand the impacts of stigma associated with diabetes, address barriers in patient-provider communication, and examine the mental health complications of diabetes from a public health lens. She is mentored by Ashby Walker, Ph.D., director of health equity initiatives at UF’s Diabetes Institute, and is currently collaborating on research efforts supporting Project ECHO Diabetes and All for ONE.

Jennifer has a B.S. in psychology from George Mason University and an M.P.H. in health promotion from The George Washington University, and is a certified health education specialist (CHES). She has more than six years of experience working in the diabetes field, most recently as the senior manager, professional engagement at the American Diabetes Association. In this role, she led outreach efforts targeting international health care providers and researchers, developed the infrastructure for 16 scientific interest groups totaling 17,000 members, and collaborated with nationwide leaders on establishing ADA’s Women’s Interprofessional Network, which aims to combat gender gaps in science.

Previously, she interned at JDRF, designed diabetes awareness and prevention campaigns, and was a founding member of her undergraduate institution’s College Diabetes Network.

Her research experiences include contributing to studies about diabetes education and support programs, racial and gender disparities, the usage of social marketing to promote behavior change, and human factors psychology.

As the recipient of PHHP’s 2021 Horace and Vivian Sawyer Endowed Scholarship, which is awarded to a graduate student focused on supporting people with chronic conditions or disabilities through community reintegration, Jennifer aims to conduct community-engaged research with the primary goals of improving the mental health and overall well-being of people living with diabetes.

—UF Diabetes Institute