Congratulations to Samantha J. Harris, SPIA PhD candidate and graduate research assistant, for her acceptance of a two-year Postdoctoral Fellowship appointment with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Bloomberg Opioid Initiative! The fellowship is funded by Bloomberg Philanthropies and resides within in the Department of Health Policy and Management in the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, Maryland.

As a Bloomberg Opioid Initiative fellow, Samantha will work with an interdisciplinary research team to evaluate innovative projects across multiple states that aim to reduce the risk of opioid mortality. This work will be a continuation of Samantha’s current research agenda in the areas of substance use disorder treatment accessibility and quality, prevention, and harm reduction.

Samantha began conducting research in substance use disorder policy and treatment upon witnessing stark increases in opioid mortality while enrolled as a graduate student at the Martin School of Public Policy and Administration at the University of Kentucky. Upon completion of her MPA in 2016 with a specialization in health policy, Samantha received a doctoral assistantship in SPIA’s Department of Public Administration and Policy as a research assistant to faculty mentor Dr. Amanda J. Abraham.

While at SPIA, Samantha conducted health policy research alongside Dr. Abraham and other SPIA faculty mentors including Dr. David Bradford and Dr. Emily Lawler, and Dr. Grace Bagwell Adams at the College of Public Health, along with researchers from other institutions. Over the course of her studies, Samantha has collaborated with interdisciplinary teams on a number of NIH and HHS funded grants including a $3.5 million dollar grant funded by NIDA and has published her work in leading health journals including Health Affairs, Neurotherapeutics, Psychiatric Services, and a forthcoming book chapter in Medicaid: Enrollment, Eligibility, and Key Issues.

We are very excited for Samantha and this wonderful opportunity!