Valerie Yontz, RN-BC, MPH, PhD

vyontz@hawaii.edu

(808) 956-5771

(808) 956-5818

Biomed D-202

Valerie Yontz, RN-BC, MPH, PhD

Specialist and Practicum Coordinator

Academic Degrees

  • PhD (Sociology of Aging), University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa
  • MPH (Gerontology), University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa
  • MA (Sociology), University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa
  • MS (Nursing), University of Utah
  • MS (Biology), Saint Louis University (Missouri)
  • BSN (Nursing), Saint Louis University (Missouri)
  • BA (Biology), Illinois Wesleyan University (Missouri)

Dr. Valerie Yontz is currently Specialist and Practicum Coordinator. Through her experiences in the community, Dr. Yontz helps make linkages and placements for the MPH students' field practicum.

Over a ten year span, Dr. Yontz was the Coordinator of an Elderly Service Program for a Community Health Center in Hawaii called Kokua Kalihi Valley (KKV) Comprehensive Family Services. She developed an expansive and very successful community-based elderly service program that demonstrated elderly can exercise, eat right, improve their health, and age more successfully while staying longer in their own homes. Valerie also served as the Quality Assurance Officer and the Director of Public Housing Services for Kokua Kalihi Valley Health Center. She created many major components of KKV's Quality Improvement system. Prior to the university, Dr. Yontz worked as Health Service Director for Pohai Nani Retirement Assisted Living facility and with Hospice Hawaii as Patient Care Coordinator.

Valerie is originally from central Illinois and has a wide range of experiences acquired throughout her professional life. Valerie is a nurse, biologist, sociologist, and gerontologist. She has worked in Missouri, Maine, Utah, and Illinois as an emergency room nurse, home health nurse, tuberculosis monitoring nurse, and nursing consultant. With her transcultural nursing background, Valerie has worked overseas in Liberia, West Africa (Peace Corps) training village health workers and in Thailand, Malaysia and throughout Southeast Asia teaching and training Vietnamese and Cambodian refugees about health education topics and healthy behavior practices.

Certification/Licenses

  • Registered Nurse (RN) in Hawai‘i
  • Board Certified as Gerontological Nurse (RN-BC)
  • Advanced Certificate in Gerontology (University of Hawai‘i)
  • Assisted Living National Administrator Certification (Level1)
  • Notary Public in State of Hawaii

Awards & Honors

  • PH 630 Cultural Competency in Health Care voted most favorite class by Hui Ola Pono in 2007

Research Interests

  • Public Health Workforce Training and Continuing Education
  • Program Evaluation and Monitoring
  • Community Based and Engaged Participatory Methods
  • Qualitative Data Collection Methods
  • Service Learning
  • Public Health Practice & Intervention
  • Cultural Competency & Diversity
  • Cross-Cutting Areas of Public Health Education
  • Health Equity and Health Disparity Issues
  • Aging and Elder Services
  • Health and Gerontology

Current Research Grants

Western Region Public Health Training Center (WRPHTC) grant—Valerie Yontz is the Principal Investigator for University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa and one of the Management Team members in conjunction with four public health partners—University of Arizona, UC-San Francisco, Nevada System of Higher Education, and Pacific Island Health Officer Organization (PIHOA). The mission of WRPHTC is to train existing public health workforce in the HRSA Region 9 including Hawai‘i, Pacific Islands, Arizona, Nevada, and California.

Selected Publications

Yontz, V. & Maddock, J. (2007). Focus on Health Disparities: Gaining Momentum in Hawaii, California Journal of Health Promotion 2007, Volume 5, Issue in press.

Yontz, V., Kilonsky, N. Maddock, J. & Braun, K. (2007) Public Health at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, 2000-2006. California Journal of Health Promotion 2007, Volume 5, Issue I, vii-xv.