CER2 Fellowship Program

Comparative and Cost-Effectiveness Research Training for Nurse Scientists (CER2)

Funded by an NIH-NINR T32 Institutional Training Grant, the Comparative and Cost-Effectiveness Research Training for Nurse Scientists (CER2) program provides pre and postdoctoral trainees with research support, didactic courses, networking opportunities, and financial assistance to build their scientific skills. Each fellow is matched with two faculty mentors—one within nursing and one from another field—to advise them in pursuing original health policy research and helping to prepare them for influential careers as nurse scientists and advocates.

The program builds on the complementary strengths of Columbia University School of Nursing’s faculty who have expertise in mentoring pre and postdoctoral students in CER2 methods and the robust infrastructure of the Columbia University Irving Medical Center.

What is CER2?

The United States health care system spends far more than any other developed country and we consistently have worse outcomes. Comparative and cost-effectiveness research generates patient centered evidence to help improve the quality of our health care system while improving efficiency and reducing health disparities. CER2 is a NINR-funded (T32NR014205) pre and postdoctoral fellowship program aimed to prepare nurse scientists in these important methods. Fellows are provided with the foundation required to recognize and address the real world information needs of patients, providers and policy makers by examining the comparative and/or cost effectiveness of competing interventions for high-risk and underserved populations across the continuum of care.

What does a CER2 fellowship offer?

  • Mentoring and research support: Fellows are matched with two faculty mentors, one within nursing and one from another field, to advise them as they pursue one or more original research projects using CER2 methods to assess competing interventions for high-risk and underserved populations across the continuum of care. For predoctoral fellows, this research project is the student’s dissertation.
  • Didactic courses in CER2 Methods: Based on the trainee's interest and expertise, didactic courses are available. Sample courses include: Introduction to Comparative Effectiveness Research (1.5 credits); Introduction to Health Economics (3 credits); Analysis of Large Scale Data Sets (1.5 credits); Decision Analysis for Clinical and Public Health (3 credits)
  • Networking: Monthly seminars provide opportunities to meet with researchers and students from different disciplines, research, and practice environments.
  • Tuition, fees, and health insurance: Up to three years of tuition and fees are provided. All trainees receive individual or family health insurance.
  • Funds for travel and research-related supplies: Fellows receive funds to travel to one scientific meeting, annually, and additional funds are available to support research activities, as needed.
  • Stipends: Fellows receive stipends consistent with NIH guidelines

Who should apply for CER2?

  • Predoctoral applications may come from any eligible student enrolled or accepted in the Columbia University School of Nursing PhD program.
  • Postdoctoral fellows must be a recent PhD graduate (within three years of defense of dissertation) from any accredited university who is also a registered nurse.
  • All applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.

Current Predoctoral Fellows

  • Mint Kueakomoldej, BSN, RN

    Mint Kueakomoldej, BSN, RN, has previous experience in critical care and HIV/AIDS. Her research interest includes health services, workforce, and health policy in underserved areas. She is a Margaret E. Mahoney fellow in Health Policy.  


  • Leah Estrada

    Leah Estrada, BSN, MA, RN, CPN, has experience in pediatric intensive care. Her research interest is palliative care health disparities in older adults.

Current Postdoctoral Fellows

  • Eunjoo An, PhD, RN

    Eunjoo An, PhD, RN is a postdoctoral research fellow under the mentorship of Elizabeth Corwin, PhD who is researching ways to improve health behaviors in adults with HTN utilizing non-pharmacological methods such as mindfulness practice.

  • Komal P. Murali, PhD, RN, ACNP-BC

    Komal P. Murali, PhD, RN, ACNP-BC is postdoctoral research fellow under the mentorship of Patricia W. Stone and May Hua. Murali's research focuses on identifying the palliative care needs of seriously ill older adults with MCC, exploring the symptom burden and quality of life of seriously ill older adults and their caregivers, and developing effective, goal-concordant, high quality, serious illness care for this population across health care settings. 

  • Amelia Schlak, PhD, RN

    Amelia Schlak, PhD, RN completed her PhD at the University of Pennsylvania in the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research. Her research interests lie at the intersection of policy, organizational design, workforce well-being, and patient outcomes. As a nursing outcomes researcher, she is focused on the contribution of nursing to improving patient outcomes that are of national policy interest and particularly those related to health care delivery reform.

Prior Trainees

Learn more about CER2 and begin the application process

Contact Patricia Stone, PhD at ps2024@columbia.edu