January 17, 2019

RTC:Rural welcomes two new research associates

New Year, new beginnings! Two new research associates have joined us in the last few months, and we’re excited to welcome them to the team!

Meet the new RTC:Rural staff:

Kaitlin Fertaly stands outside leaning against a fence. She is smiling at the camera.Kaitlin Fertaly, Research Associate

Kaitlin is the newest member of the Healthy Community Living (HCL) team. She works with the HCL evaluation sites located across the United States to assist in implementation of the Community Living Skills and Living Well in the Community workshops, and works with the HCL team on measures creation, data collection and program development.

Kaitlin started at the RTC: Rural as a Research Associate in 2018. She has a B.A. and M.A. in Anthropology from Southern Illinois University and a Ph.D. in Geography from the University of Colorado Boulder. Prior to her work at RTC, Kaitlin conducted research on the gendered dimensions geopolitics, international development, and migration in post-Soviet Armenia. She was also an instructor for introductory and upper-level undergraduate courses in geography and anthropology. She has worked as an English as a second language teacher in China, as a research associate for international development projects in Afghanistan, and as an academic coordinator in Boston, MA. She is broadly interested in issues of equality and empowerment.

“I am excited to be in Montana and to be working on a national project with such great partners and colleagues,” she said.

 

Meredith RepkeMeredith Repke, Research Associate

Meredith works on the Rural Self-Employment and Rural Access to Health Insurance and Health Care projects. As a Research Associate, Meredith is analyzing quantitative data from a nationwide survey on health care and insurance access, as well as contributing to the collection of qualitative data related to rural self-employment.

Meredith joined RTC:Rural in 2018. Prior to joining RTC:Rural, she worked as a Career Counselor at the University of Illinois Career Center while earning her Master of Human Resources degree. Upon completing her M.H.R. degree in 2011, Meredith went on to work as a Human Resources Manager for The Procter & Gamble Company. She later returned to school to earn her Ph.D. in Experimental (Social) Psychology in 2018 from the University of Montana. Following completion of her Ph.D., Meredith worked as a Visiting Assistant Professor at Indiana University before joining RTC:Rural. Meredith has published several articles related to the environment and health and wellbeing.

“In my first weeks at RTC:Rural, I have been struck by the passion and dedication of the staff to furthering RTC:Rural’s mission. I look forward to contributing to the important work of RTC:Rural through involvement in a variety of employment and health projects,” she said.

Welcome Kaitlin and Meredith! We’re excited to have you on board!

Curious about the rest of the RTC:Rural faculty and staff? Find all their bios on our About page.