Health systems engineering PhD student nets pair of awards

// Industrial & Systems Engineering

Photo of Rachel Rutkowski
Rachel Rutkowski

Rachel Rutkowski, a PhD student in the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has landed two honors in recognition of her work in human factors and healthcare systems engineering.

Rutkowski, a member of the lab of Associate Professor Nicole Werner, received the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society’s Student Member with Honors Award, which celebrates emerging scholars who have excelled and contributed to the field as students.

She also earned selection as a Wisconsin Area Health Education Center (AHEC) Scholar, an especially significant feat because the program is usually reserved for students in more traditional, patient-facing healthcare fields. Rutkowski, who’s participated in AHEC events since she was an UW-Madison undergraduate in ISyE, advocated for her inclusion and hopes to further demonstrate the value of industrial engineers in healthcare.

Rutkowski’s research focuses on protecting patient safety for older adults and their caregivers during care transitions following emergency department visits. After completing her PhD, she plans to work on healthcare interventions and policies to assist rural and underserved communities.

Author: Tom Ziemer