Outreach, Partnerships and Implementation Science (OPIS)

MICHR's Community Engagement & Research Core is called Outreach, Partnerships and Implementation Science (OPIS) Program. Beginning in October 2009, OPIS integrated the Community Engagement, Translation Science, and Practice Partnership cores to better meet the needs of the university and community partners, and to address healthcare issues of the public. As such, OPIS is a community engagement and research workgroup which addresses these three areas:

1) Community Engagement: Public Partners & Community-Based Organizations, 2) Community Engagement: Practitioners/Partners, and 3) Implementation/Translation Science. Representation includes faculty from U-M School of Nursing, School of Public Health, and School of Medicine.

For the first 5 years of funding, OPIS has focused on the following Specific Aims, which are formulated to meet MICHR’s Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) Strategic Goals:

  • Aim 1. To provide an academic home and unified leadership within the UM that will allow us to identify community partners and develop long-standing, collaborative, and equitable Community-University research partnerships
  • Aim 2. To create educational, training, and career development opportunities that promote bidirectional knowledge flow between the public & investigator, and the provider & investigator communities, using a co-learning process that builds local capacity
  • Aim 3. To enhance infrastructure and tools to support Community-University research partnerships that are based on empowering and power-sharing processes
  • Aim 4. To create and test new innovative methods for community engagement and community-based participatory research
  • Aim 5. To provide regional and national leadership that addresses the “unfinished business” (NIH, 2006) of ensuring bi-directional Community-University research partnerships

OPIS Faculty:


Marita Titler, PhD, RN, FAAN
Associate Director of OPIS
Associate Dean, Office of Practice & Clinical Scholarship
School of Nursing


Bob Anderson, EdD

Professor, Department of Medical Education
Director, Behavioral, Clinical and Health Systems Research Core of the MDRTC


Barbara Brush, PHD, ANP-BC, FAAN

Associate Professor
Carol J. and F. Edward Lake Term Clinical Professor, Division of Health Promotion and Risk Reduction
School of Nursing

Karen Farris, PhD
Charles R. Walgreen III Professor in Pharmacy Administration 
Professor of Social & Administrative Sciences
College of Pharmacy 



Michael Klinkman, MD, MPS    
Professor, Department of Family Medicine
Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry


Dean Smith, PhD    
Professor of Health Management and Policy and Senior Associate Dean, School of Public Health


Don Vereen, MD, MPH
Director, Community-Based Public Health


Marc Zimmerman, PhD    
Professor and Chair, Health Behavior & Health Education, School of Public Health
Professor, Psychology
Research Scientist, Center for Human Growth and Development


OPIS Staff:


Kanchan Lota, MPH, CQIA      
Assistant Managing Director


Tricia Piechowski-Whitney, MPH, MSW, MA      
Community Engagement Coordinator


Adam Paberzs, MPH
Community Engagement Liaison


Trudy Adler, LMSW
Network Research Specialist


Meghan Airgood, BS, CHES    
Community Outreach Coordinator



Lee Bell, AA
Flint Clinical Research Associate


Karen Calhoun, MA
Detroit Clinical Research Associate and Co-Facilitator, Community Engagement Coordinating Council


Cynthia Norton, BS      
Administrative Assistant


Fran Talsma, MSW
Policy Clinical Research Associate


Marie Watkins, BSN
Community Based Research Nurse


For more information about MICHR's Outreach, Partnerships & Implementation Science (OPIS) program, please e-mail us at MICHR-OPIS@umich.edu.

Feedback on this page? Email Meghan Airgood

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