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Meet the Cancer Quality and Control Training Program Fellows

Post-Doctoral Fellows

Dr. Ilona Fridman is a health communication researcher with a focus on leveraging digital technologies to enhance medical decision-making, improve health outcomes, and enhance patient experiences. Her diverse educational background in engineering, and management has equipped her with a unique blend of quantitative skills for data analysis and theoretical knowledge of decision-making. Dr. Fridman’s research portfolio includes notable contributions such as translating behavior theory to support patient decisions around complex healthcare issues, implementing an automated text analysis to identify systemic biases in decision making during clinical consultations, and developing a digital decision support tool for patients with early-stage breast cancer to reduce overtreatment. Her research has been funded by T32 Cancer Care Quality Training Program, DukeDataPlus Program (2018), and the UNC NC TraCS pilot research award (2022). She has authored numerous first-authored publications that have been accepted in high-impact journals, including JAMA Oncology, JMIR Public Health and Surveillance.
Victoria J. Dunsmore, PhD is a postdoctoral fellow in the Cancer Care Quality Training Program who focuses her work on daily psychological outcomes for patients with cancer. Her dissertation focused on tracking daily coping and ‘scanxiety’ among patients with lung cancer as they approached their upcoming scans. She is currently working with Dr. Stephanie Wheeler and Dr. Katherine Reeder-Hayes to evaluate the effectiveness of interventions aimed at improving medication adherence among breast cancer survivors. As a fellow, she aims to combine her past work and current training to implement interventions aimed at helping survivors manage ‘scanxiety’ as they approach their upcoming surveillance scans.
Kelly Tan, PhD, RN is a clinician scientist whose research focuses on improving the lives of caregivers of people with cancer. Dr. Tan’s current work includes the development of a caregiver resource bridging intervention and work addressing disparities in cancer caregiving.

Pre-Doctoral Fellows

Austin R. Waters, MSPH is a predoctoral fellow. His research interests focus on identifying and mitigating inequities in outcomes among LGBTQ+, adolescent and young adult (AYA), and caregiver populations across the cancer continuum. He is particularly interested in the intersection of structural factors such as health policy, costs of care, and insurance structures with individual outcomes such as financial toxicity, health related quality of life, and access to care. Austin’s predoctoral research focuses on financial, employment, and mental health disparities rooted in LGBTQ+ stigma and discrimination among LGBTQ+ cancer survivors. Methodologically, Austin is trained in econometrics, biostatistics, mixed-methods research, community-engaged participatory research, implementation science, as well as qualitative data collection and analysis.
Lauren Bates-Fraser, MA is a predoctoral fellow and doctoral candidate in the Department of Allied Health Science. Her research interests include i.) understanding the barriers and facilitators for improving 24-hour activity behaviors in oncology populations targeting sedentary behavior, physical activity, and sleep, ii.) mechanisms underlying the effect of 24-hour activity behaviors on cancer prevention and control, and iii.) exercise prescription for oncology populations with an emphasis on lifestyle implementation. Her dissertation research focuses on improving our understanding of sedentary behavior context and cardiovascular disease risk in endometrial cancer survivors. Her mentorship team includes: Dr. Hyman Muss, Dr. Victoria Bae-Jump, Dr. Michelle Meyer, Dr. Justin Moore, Dr. Lee Stoner, and Dr. Erik Hanson.
Emilie Duchesneau, MSPH, is a predoctoral fellow in Epidemiology. Her research interests lie at the intersections of aging, oncology, and pharmaceutical interventions. Her broad research goals are to use advanced epidemiologic and statistical methods to improve the clinical care of older adults, with a special focus on older cancer survivors. She has extensive experience using large healthcare databases and data linkages to conduct health services research. Emilie’s dissertation research is focused on improving the ascertainment of frailty, as a patient-centered geriatric outcome, in administrative healthcare databases. Her primary research mentor is Dr. Jennifer Lund.

Learn more about the Cancer Care Quality Training Program