Montagnard Hypertension Project (2012 – PRESENT)


Team: Morrison, S., Shreeniwas, S., Young, A., Dharod, J., Nie, Y., Siu, H., Adrong, H., Sayers, J., Bernot, K., Malotky, M., Nsonwu, M., et al

Title: Montagnard Hypertension Research Project (2012 – present)

Brief: Montagnard general perceptions about health and healthcare, their understanding of chronic diseases (hypertension and diabetes) and associated health risks, the relationship between chronic disease outcomes, health and selected acculturation factors. Also, the experiences of Montagnard doctors trained in Vietnam, their experiences with US health and healthcare, exploration of a primary model for competency development for Montagnard health professionals.

The Montagnard Hypertension Research Project trained students in Human Subjects Protection, literature searches, and use of appropriate technology in data collection and analysis. They participated in weekly research meetings in order to expose and socialize students to all aspects of the research process: community engagement, cross cultural exposure, multi-disciplinary approaches, basic qualitative and statistical research methods concepts, questionnaire design, IRB training, practical experience with interviews, data analysis, and dissemination. They gathered behavioral data and biological samples from more than 130 individuals while presenting results in co-authored reports and to academic and community audiences, while winning awards at regional conferences. More than 300 families received health screenings and other health and social services information and assistance at community fairs.

Community investment and desired outcomes:

  • 25 Montagnard and 75+ students from diverse backgrounds trained as research assistants

  • 5 area colleges and universities and 5+ other institutions represented

  • Health fairs, clinic referrals, community forums/data discussions,

  • Scholarships, grants: Numerous individual student awards associated with this project

  • First Montagnard colleges students, Lek Siu , Vung Ksor, to perform IRB-approved research on plants used by Montagnards in Vietnam for food and medicinal purposes and travel abroad service learning projects in their native Jarai villages, 2014

  • Grant, UNCG Coalition of Diverse Language Communities, 2015-16

  • Peer Reviewed Publication, Morrison, S., Shreeniwas, S. Young, A., Dharod, J., Nie, Y B., Siu, H W., Adrong, H Y., Sayers, J., Bernot, K., Malotky, M. & Nsonwu, M. (2018), When community calls, we collaborate! Community-based participatory research with the multi-language Montagnard refugee community. Progress in Community Health Partnership: Research, Education and Action.





  • Morrison, S., Young, A., Dharod, J., Xin, H., Nsonwu, M., Sills, S., Bailey, R. (Apr 2012). Empowering Underserved Communities. University of North Carolina Greensboro, NC

  • Morrison, S., Dharod, J., Sills, S., Nsonwu, M., Young, A., Xin, H. (Oct 2012). The Montagnard Health Disparities Network: Workable Solutions for Community Empowerment. National Refugee and Immigrant Conference, Chicago, IL

  • Morrison, S., Young, A., Renfrew B., Ksor, V., Romah, S., Adrong, H’Y. (Feb 2018). Why Cultural Humility is Key when Working with Marginalized: Outsider and Insider Perspectives. A slide show and interactive presentation to UNCG PHE graduate students.

  • Young, A., Malotky, M., Renfrew, B., Bush, C., Raczkowski, C., Morrison, S., Bernot, K., Shreeniwas, S., Dharod, J. (Apr 2016). Food Health and Culture: What the Montagnard Refugee Community can Teach Us. Presented by the Montagnard Health Disparities Research Network. IDS Speaker Series, Guilford College, Greensboro NC

  • Balakrishnan, K., Morrison, S., Sudha, S., Denzongpa, K., Wang, G. (Feb 2018). Asian American Minority Health: Health Status among Montagnards in North Carolina with Implications for Public Health Practice. Poster presentation, 39th Annual Minority Health Conference, UNC, Chapel Hill, NC

  • Sudha, S., Morrison, S., Sommers, S., Wang, G., Bernot, K., Malotky, M., Enoch, V. (April 2019). Hair Cortisol Concentrations among Southeast Asian Refugee Adults in the United States. Poster presentation, Southern Gerontological Society Annual Meeting, FL