On September 1st, 2017, SMAHRT relocated to the University of Wisconsin-Madison. This decision wasn’t an easy one, but the team is so excited to see what our next adventures will be like in the

The whole team was given the opportunity to go be a part of this relocation and in the end, Brad Kerr, Aubrey Gower, and Marina Jenkins decided to be a part of this team. The rest of team all have great endeavors ahead of them in Seattle.

Brad Kerr


Photo May 19, 5 12 18 PM
Marina Jenkins


Photo May 19, 4 56 44 PM
Aubrey Gower





Dr. Megan Moreno, Principal Investigator of SMAHRT (Click image for Dr. Moreno’s Bio)


We took some time to ask Dr. Moreno some questions about this move, to help everyone understand more about this relocation. If you have more lingering after reading this post, feel free to reach out to Dr. Moreno through the new SMAHRT email:

Q: In general, is it often that researchers change institutions like what you and the team are doing?

Dr. Moreno:
Great question! Well, there are several factors that may be a part of the decision for a researcher to transition to a new institution. It is relatively common, more common than you would think, especially in academia, to consider a move. This usually happens when a new institution presents a new opportunity that the current institution cannot offer. These opportunities can include a new leadership role, an improved research environment, improved resources such as research funding or lab space, or security in the form of “hard money”.

Q: Could you clarify what “hard money” is? Is there a “soft money” then?

Dr. Moreno:
Of course! “Hard money” refers to salary that is guaranteed to be paid by the university, regardless of whether your grants are successfully funded. It provides greater security for your job and position. Yes, there is “soft money”. When we use this term, it refers to salary paid for by grants, it is “soft” because it isn’t guaranteed and isn’t permanent. In a “soft money” environment, if you don’t successfully get grants to pay your salary, you may lose some of your salary.

Aerial view of the University of Wisconsin-Madison Campus

Q: That makes sense! So, why did you decide to move SMAHRT?

Dr. Moreno:

Some of the key factors that led us to make this move were the opportunity for new leadership roles. I’ll have the opportunity to serve as the Academic Division Chief for the Division of General Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine and as the Vice Chair of Digital Health. Brad will also take on a new role as an Education Coordinator within the division. These leadership roles will bring “hard money” – like what we had talked about before – to the team and support the salaries of everyone on the team.

Q: That sounds so exciting! What do those roles entail for you and Brad?

Dr. Moreno:
The role as Academic Division Chief for the Division of General Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine involves mentoring faculty in that division on their scholarly projects, such as research, chapters, review articles and patient case reports, and fostering collaboration between faculty and trainees. The role as Vice Chair of Digital Health is an exciting opportunity, where we as a team will be able to take some of what we and others have learned about how digital tools can improve patient care, and put new initiatives into place at the American Family Children’s Hospital, as well as within UW Health Clinics.

Brad’s new role will be helping to plan research teaching sessions and coordinating interns who will work with these faculty members.

Click on image to learn more about the research being done at the University of Wisconsin SMPH Department of Pediatrics

Q: What will be some things that SMAHRT team members will be working on?

Dr. Moreno:
SMAHRT will be intricately involved in reviewing literature to identify promising approaches, collaborating with different pediatric specialists and providers, and testing new tools within the hospital and clinics.

Q: What are some things that will be different for the team because of this move?

Dr. Moreno:
Well, to start, the physical location of the SMAHRT offices will be different. We will have a suite of offices in the General Pediatrics office area, including a large team room for our staff and interns. We will be close to the UW-Madison university campus. Our emails will be different. So from here on out, please contact us via .


Q: What are you hoping will be the same for the team?

Dr. Moreno:
Our website will be the same and so will all our social media handles. Our commitment to doing high quality, innovative research focused on adolescents and social media will not ever change. Wherever we move, we are committed to collaborating with adolescents, parents, and community members in the development and translation of our work. We also are doing all that we can do stay in touch with all our SMAHRT Scholars Program Alumni, SMAHRTeam Alumni, and collaborators. As a social media research team, we plan to stay in touch using all the digital tools that we can muster!

Q: Speaking of the SMAHRT Scholars program, what does the future of this program look like?

Dr. Moreno:

We are committed to continue this program, and anticipate launching a new cohort in Madison in the summer of 2018. We are also looking into the possibility of having two sites, Seattle and Madison, and having the program in both those cities. Stay in touch if you are interested, we’ll keep you posted!

SMAHRT Scholars 2017 after touring the Seattle Children’s Hospital. Click image to learn more about this program!

Stay connected with SMAHRT on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to keep up with SMAHRT happenings as the team adventures to the Midwest!



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