Jenny Ostergren, M.P.H.

Doctoral Student
Ph.D. Candidate in Health Behavior and Health Education, University of Michigan School of Public Health, 2012-present
M.P.H., Community Health Education, University of Minnesota, 2009
B.A., Psychology, University of Minnesota, 2007

Biography

Jenny Ostergren is a Ph.D. candidate in Health Behavior and Health Education (HBHE) and a pre-doctoral trainee in public health and aging at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology and M.P.H. in community health education with a concentration in global health from the University of Minnesota. Her research interests are in the areas of mental health and aging, risk communication and decision-making, psychological and behavioral implications of genetic testing, and public health ethics. Her work focuses on understanding factors associated with dementia help-seeking behavior among older adults. Jenny’s current research is supported by a two-year pre-doctoral traineeship from the U-M Interdisciplinary Doctoral Training Program in Public Health and Aging (T32 AG027708). Jenny’s dissertation will examine psychosocial and cognitive factors related to perceived personal risk and worry about Alzheimer’s disease, and will also assess demographic and health-related correlates of help-seeking behavior among older adults with subjective memory complaints. She hopes that the findings from this research will help to inform efforts promoting early and accurate diagnosis of dementia. Jenny has also worked as a research assistant on the Impact of Personal Genomics (PGen) study, examining consumer understanding of health-related personal genomic testing results, and has provided database and codebook assistance on the MI-ONCOSEQ study investigating the ethical and psychosocial implications of personalized medicine based on the genomic sequencing of patients with cancer. Prior to arriving at the University of Michigan, Jenny worked as a research study coordinator and analyst in the Biomedical Ethics Research Unit at Mayo Clinic on a study examining the social, ethical and policy implications of an emerging genetic understanding of addiction.