GPHAP Alumni Profiles

Booth Alumni

Harris Alumni

Law School Alumni

SSA Alumni

Booth Alumni

Will Dardani

Will Dardani graduated in 2015 from Booth. He is the Manager of Member Engagement in the Member Relations and Insights department at UHC (University HealthSystem Consortium). In this role, Will leads UHC’s engagement, training, and education efforts for the nearly 100 participating faculty practice organizations and 7,000 associated users of the UHC-AAMC Faculty Practice Solutions Center (FPSC). This work includes helping members utilize a robust set of data reporting and benchmarking tools to better understand and optimize performance in the areas of faculty practice and revenue cycle operations. Prior to joining UHC, Will managed ambulatory network and business development activities at UChicago Medicine and previously served as a clinical policy analyst for the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) in Washington DC. Will completed his BA at the University of Colorado at Boulder and earned his MBA from Booth. Will’s career involves strategy and business development in the health care provider space.

Ashley Nassiri

Ashley graduated in 2015 from Pritzker and Booth. She is interested in studying the intersection of business management and medicine. Using the tools she gained through her training, she researches cost-effectiveness and implementation of new surgical methods in the operating room. She plans to continue this research at Vanderbilt University Hospitals, where she will be completing a residency in Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery.

Kevin Stephens

Kevin graduated from Booth and Pritzker in 2015. He is originally from New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina sparked his interest in health administration and policy. During graduate school, he decided to become a family medicine physician that works in under resourced areas. He also became interested in the intersection between entrepreneurship and healthcare. Kevin plans to split his time seeing patients at a FQHC and taking on an administrative role where he can be involved with population health management. He did his GPHAP fellowship at the consulting firm Strategy& (formerly Booz & co.) where he worked with a large healthcare insurance company.

Kelly Waldhoff

Kelly WaldhoffKelly graduated in 2007 from the School of Social Service Administration (SSA) with a certificate from GPHAP. Prior to her studies at the University of Chicago, she worked as a health information technology consultant for the Cook County Bureau of Health Services. Her work with the County led her to pursue studies in health care policy and eventually led her to take an internship at OEI.

Recognizing the importance of program efficiency and sound health care policy, Kelly now works for OEI. During her time at OEI she has worked on various studies, including an assessment of Medicaid payments and services to persons affected by hurricane Katrina, a medical record review of facet joint injections, and electronic prescribing in Medicare Part D.

"Health programs and policy are extremely complex due in part to the numerous and disparate interests involved in policy formation. I frequently find myself drawing on knowledge gained from my GPHAP classes, where I experienced the rich interplay between social work, public policy, medicine, business, and the law."

Harris Alumni

Sandeep Ahuja

Sandeep Ahuja came to GPHAP with a mission: to bring medical facilities to the doorsteps of millions of slum dwellers in Delhi, India. Putting his vision into practice didn’t take him long. Within two months of completing GPHAP and graduating from the Harris School of Public Policy in 2006, Sandeep launched a nonprofit organization, Operation ASHA, which has been making a difference in the health and lives of thousands who would otherwise go without medical services.

Sandeep AhujaIn August 2006, Operation ASHA opened its free community health clinic, where two primary care physicians provide treatment for day-to-day illnesses to 4,500 patients each month, free of charge. The cost of an entire treatment is 60 cents per patient, including consultation and medicines. Then Operation ASHA directed its focus to tuberculosis treatment. TB has attained epidemic proportions in India with 2.2 million new cases and 400,000 deaths in 2006. The Indian economy suffers a loss of $3 billion annually on account of the disease. Within a year, Operation ASHA has become the largest nonprofit in Delhi in TB treatment with 34 treatment centers that serve 475 patients. It has evolved a new paradigm by taking the treatment to the doorsteps of the poor, which involves the community and reduces costs drastically. The cost of treating each patient is $10. Leveraging existing community resources, Operation ASHA has delivered care in a highly cost-effective manner: with a donation of $1, patients receive $35 worth of treatment. 

Operation ASHA has a special relationship with Chicago. It is registered as a 501c3 nonprofit organization. To raise funds, Operation ASHA holds a fundraising dinner every year which is organized by an interdisciplinary array of students, including GPHAP, SSA, Harris, GSB, Law, and Pritzker Medical School in collaboration with other medical schools in the greater Chicago area. This year, the dinner will be held on February 28 at a downtown location. Visit their website for details.

Sandeep and Shelly, his colleague, also delivered a course on international health problems at Harris School in February 2008.

Certainly, the success of Operation ASHA can be attributed to Sandeep's passion, drive and commitment, as well as the partnerships he has formed in Delhi and Chicago. At GPHAP, we're proud to have played a small role in preparing Sandeep to make a difference.

"GPHAP provided me with the tools, expertise, and confidence to expand the work that had been going on in Delhi for a decade. The core curriculum provides sufficient depth. The course on financial management is a must for anyone aspiring to a top position. Simultaneously, the electives provide wide choice to tailor the program to one's needs. The faculty is top notch and administration is highly responsive to students' needs and always willing to help. I am happy I enrolled in the GPHAP program."

- Sandeep Ahuja, GPHAP 2006 

Abby Lopez

Abby LopezAbby graduated with a Master of Public Policy (MPP) degree from the University of Chicago, Harris School of Public Policy in 2008. While pursing her MPP, she focused on health policy and also earned a certificate GPHAP. Prior to graduate school, she worked at a research and consulting firm conducting evaluations of early care and education, HIV/AIDS, and childhood obesity programs in California.

Abby is currently working at OEI, where she also interned during the summer and throughout the school year. As a team member, Abby conducts evaluations of HHS programs and policies. Some of the topics she has worked on include clinical investigators' financial conflict-of-interest and electronic transmission of Medicare Part D prescription drugs. Her prior work experience and the combination of health administration and research courses she took at Harris and as part of GPHAP provided a foundation for the work she currently does at OEI.

Mara Werner

Mara WernerMara Werner enrolled in her first GPHAP class on a whim. Little did she know that this one class would spark such an interest in health care and health policy that she would focus on this through out her time at Harris School and later in her work at HHS. After graduating with an MPP from the Harris School in 2007, Mara started working for OEI.

Mara works on studies which evaluate different aspects of the Medicare program. One study she worked on used Medicare claims data to identify potential medication errors and compare rates of medication areas across different groups of Medicare beneficiaries. She is currently studying variation in Medicare payments for clinical diagnostic lab tests across the country.

Law School Alumni

Angelique Salib

Angelique graduated in 2015 from the Law School. She was born and raised in Chicago. As an undergraduate, she studied Psychology and French and worked as an interpreter before law school. She is interested in health law compliance and regulatory matters. She is an Erikson Health Care Administration Fellow. Her practicum was completed at the Mental Disability Advocacy Center.

SSA Alumni

Kelsey Bogue

Kelsey received her undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 2013 and came to UChicago SSA to learn how to improve health care systems at the meso- or organizational level, graduating in 2015. She is interested in reducing health care disparities and enhancing community level health through innovative methods of health care delivery. Having interned at the Section of Hospital Medicine at UChicago, she now works at the Center for Health and the Social Sciences (CHeSS), also at UChicago, as the Assistant Director of Training Programs. Kelsey hopes to continue working at the local level in health care organizations, either on program management, development, or research. Her SSA field placement at the Section of Hospital Medicine served as her GPHAP practicum.

Rachael Siemon-Carome

Rachael was a clinical practice track SSA student who graduated in 2015. She joined the GPHAP program to gain increased exposure to health care policy and program development. After graduation, she was hired at the agency where she completed her GPHAP/SSA practicum. She will continue to work as a clinical therapist for teen parents who are also in the Illinois foster care system. After becoming a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, she hopes to move into program development for community health programs/non-profits, specifically relating to food insecurity and child welfare. For her GPHAP/SSA practicum, she worked as a clinical therapist/case manager for teen parents who are also in the Illinois foster care system.

Jazzmin Cooper

From an early age, Jazzmin was committed to improving her South Los Angeles community. She also knew that she wanted to do something in the helping professions – she just didn’t know what. A friend, Jordan Anderson, SSA AM ’16, suggested that she take a closer look at SSA and its Graduate Program in Health Administration and Policy (GPHAP), which would allow her to develop the skills she needed without sacrificing her passions. 

“GPHAP has given me valuable insight into how policy and hospital management impact the quality and delivery of care. For me, it just tied everything together.” Read more about Jazzmin.

Hannah Rosenblatt

When Hannah Rosenblatt, AM '16 first started working in a mostly Hispanic community in Boston, she thought her fluent Spanish and her liberal arts education would be enough to navigate the AmeriCorps program.

But as time went on, she realized that if she really wanted to tackle the root causes of poverty, illness, and homelessness of her clients, she needed to learn more. So she applied to University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration (SSA) and its’ Graduate Program in Health Administration and Policy (GPHAP). Read more about Hannah.

Floyd Stafford III

Floyd graduated from the School of Social Service Administration in 2015. He is interested in examining the intersection of social work and criminal justice. He has extensive experience in community organizing and advocacy on behalf of people with criminal records. Floyd is the co-founder of the Alumni Association, a positive support network that assists with re-integration for the formerly incarcerated. He would like to engage in the political arena, possibly as a lobbyist or a legislator to represent his community which consists of the West Side of Chicago. He was the recipient of the 2014 Erickson fellowship, where he assisted the Office of Strategy and External Affairs for The Cook County Health and Hospital Systems, assisting in providing healthcare for the recently released from Cook County Jail.

David Javier Thompson

David graduated from SSA in 2015. He holds Bachelor's degrees in Creative Writing & Literature from the University of Michigan and Psychology from the University of Louisville, a US-UK Fulbright Research Grant-sponsored Master’s degree in Refugee Care from the University of Essex, and an AM degree from the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration (SSA). During the course of his degree work, he provided academic, case management, crisis intervention, and counseling services to youth and families, immigrants, and refugees in the US, Spain, and United Kingdom. He also conducted psychophysiological and conceptual research on aspects of human resilience. His career interests include: 1) providing direct clinical and case management services to youth and families in crisis, 2) research on the integration of intrapsychic, social, cultural, physiological, spiritual, and community resiliences into clinical practice and the training of future professionals, and 3) building networks between providers in the helping and allied health professions for the benefit of patients. Beginning with a GPHAP-sponsored Research Assistantship in 2013 and continuing throughout 2015, He worked with the UChicago Hospitals' Training Early Achievers for Careers in Health (TEACH) medical education pipeline program for underrepresented minority high school students in UChicago's Collegiate Scholars Program (CSP).