Events, trainings and workshops

2023 CHECK-UP Community-Engaged Research Workshop Series:

Leveraging Science for Action and Advocacy

June 21, 2023

Hybrid: General Baker Institute; 15798 Livernois, Detroit, MI 48238

Scientists and policy makers face society's most complex and challenging issues. This workshop will offer guidelines and best practices for enhancing interactions and dialogue between researchers and decision makers as well as community stakeholders who play a key role in influencing policy. 

Along with aligning scientific research with constituent concerns, the presentation and dissemination of that information to policy makers, who are key stakeholders in creating a healthier nation, plays a role in ensuring that decisions are evidence informed. These goals can be achieved through collaboration and consultation with community, communication, outreach, and public relations experts who have a stake in bending the health equity arc toward social justice. 

Panelists include: 

Stephanie Chang, MPP/MSW
State of Michigan Senator

Winona Bynum, RDN
Executive Director, Detroit Food Policy Council

Jametta Lilly 
CEO, Detroit Parent Network 

Matt Stiffler, PhD 
Director, Center for Arab Narratives 

Katie Dwyer, PhD 
President, Science Policy Network- Detroit 


Hilary Marusek, PhD 
Psychiatry & Behavioral Neuroscience, School of Medicine, WSU

Carrie Leach, PhD, MPA
Institute of Gerontology, CURES, & CHECK-UP, WSU 


Funding and Sustaining Community-Academic Partnerships

May 18, 2023


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Hybrid: Fisher Building Conference Room; 3011 W Grand Blvd, Detroit, MI 48202

Grant funding is vital for establishing a foundation for community-engaged research. This workshop will provide an opportunity for community stakeholders and academic faculty, staff, and clinicians to connect with experienced researchers and community stakeholders who can offer insight about how to find and secure grants that have a CEnR component.  This is the second of a series of four workshops offered in 2023.

Panelists include: 

Crystal L. Barksdale, PhD, MPH
Program Director, Division of Community Health & Population Science, National Institute on Minority Health & Health Disparities

Katie Brisson, MA
Vice President of Program, Community Foundation of Southeastern Michigan

Courtney Clyatt, MA, MPH
Senior Program Officer, Eugene Washington PCORI Engagement Awards Program

Laurie Solotorow, BS
Director, Nurtition & Health Lifestyles, Michigan Health Endowment Fund


Danielle Hilliker, MSM
Executive Director & CEO, Southeastern Michigan Health Association

Susan Miller, MA
Director of Research Philanthropy, Office of Development & Alumni Affairs, WSU


Processes and Practices for Cultivating Meaningful Community-Academic Partnerships: From Concept to Action

April 27, 2023


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Hybrid: Fellowship Chapel; 7707 Outer Dr W, Detroit, MI 48235

Cultivating community and academic partnerships can be accelerated by fostering meaningful dialogue and finding common ground in the earliest stages of partnerships. To foster such connections, this workshop will offer strategies and provide tools for researchers and community stakeholders, so they are better prepared to collaborate equitably and interact effectively. Topics will include considerations in selecting a community engagement approach, strategies to identify and engage potential community partners, best practices for first encounters, ethical considerations, and setting appropriate expectations for partners and projects. As part of the workshop, participants will work through community engagement plans. This is the first of a series of four workshops offered in 2023.

Facilitators include:

Chandra McMillion
CEO & Founder, McMillion Group

Elizabeth Towner, PhD
Department of Family Medicine & Public Health Sciences, WSU School of Medicine

Rodlescia Sneed, PhD, MPH
Institute of Gerontology & Department of Psychology, WSU 

Carrie Leach, PhD, MPA
Institute of Gerontology, CURES, & CHECK-UP, WSU


Past events

Workshop: Overview of PCORI Engagement Awards

Hosted by the Wayne State University Center for Health Equity and Community Knowledge in Urban Populations (CHECK-UP) and Karmanos Cancer Institute's Office of Cancer Health Equity and Community Engagement (OCHECE)

This workshop will prepare attendees to apply for funding from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) that supports engagement of patients and other healthcare stakeholders. 

The workshop will focus on the Eugene Washington PCORI Engagement Awards supporting projects that encourage active, meaningful involvement of patients, caregivers, clinicians, and other healthcare stakeholders as integral members of the patient-centered outcomes research/comparative clinical effectiveness research (PCOR/CER) enterprise. 

The workshop will focus specifically on the Engagement Award: Capacity Building funding opportunity. This opportunity aims to support projects that help communities increase their facility with and ability to participate across all phases of the PCOR/CER process (Letters of intent for the PCORI April 2022 cycle are due April 4, 2022). 

Attendees will gain an understanding of the connection between community engagement and PCOR/CER; learn strategies for preparing a successful LOI; review application requirements; discuss strategies for preparing a community engagement plan; and receive guidance on budget issues. 

Representatives from community-based organizations are welcome! PCORI Engagement Awards represent an ideal opportunity to develop a long-term relationship with a WSU faculty members with health research expertise. 

The workshop was led by Hayley S. Thompson, Ph.D., who has received three Engagement Awards since 2016. Dr. Thompson is Director, WSU Center for Health Equity & Community Knowledge in Urban Populations (CHECK-UP); Professor, Department of Oncology, Wayne State University School of Medicine; and Associate Center Director; Community Outreach & Engagement and at Karmanos Cancer Institute.