Current Postdoc Spotlight


Megan Ruiter, Ph.D.
Postdoctoral Fellow in Psychology

Dr. Ruiter received her Bachelor of Science degree in psychology from the University of Arizona in 2005, graduating Summa cum Laude under the mentorship of Richard R. Bootzin, PhD.  Dr. Ruiter matriculated to the University of Alabama, earning her MA in Psychology in 2008 and her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 2011 under Kenneth L. Lichstein, Ph.D. Dr. Ruiter’s Master’s thesis examined ethnic group differences between African-Americans and Caucasian Americans in normal and disordered sleep.  Her Ph.D. dissertation examined working memory capacity’s influence on adherence to behavioral insomnia therapy. She then completed a clinical psychology internship training program at the University of California-San Diego  in 2011 under Sean Drummond, Ph.D. In the summer of 2011, she came to UAB as a postdoctoral fellow, funded by an AHRQ Health Services and Research T-32 grant under the mentorship of Lawrence A. Bradley, Ph.D. She also supported by the UAB Minority Health and Health Disparities Research Center as a Health Disparities Research Training Program scholar. Her current research focuses on sleep health disparities across sociodemographic groups in connection with the development of chronic illnesses such as cardiovascular disease, cardiometabolic syndrome, and osteoarthritis. Her work on lack of sleep in connection to future stroke symptoms among normal weight individuals from the REGARDS study was recently featured on MSNBC Nightly News with Brian Williams and the front page of USA Today.

UAB News

  • Miss Alabama 2014 fourth runner-up KeLeigh Edwards was among a group of pageant queens who delivered gifts to children and family members at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Women & Infants Center on Tues., July 22, 2014. The gifts, including blankets, baby and toys, went to the Regional Newborn Intensive Care Unit and the Continuing Care Nursery.

  • Gary Warner, chief technologist at Malcovery Security, and also director of research in computer forensics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, says the J-CAT taskforce will help investigators advance cases much more quickly, including filing local charges against criminals who work across borders.

UAB Research News

  • New drugs to slow or even prevent Parkinson’s could be in human studies as early as 2015.Written by Matt Windsor An enzyme closely associated with genetic forms of Parkinson’s disease appears to play a larger role in its progression than previously thought, say investigators at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. The new research offers encouraging evidence that drugs to block this enzyme, known as leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 or LRRK2, could slow — or even...

  • UAB School of Nursing's federally funded study shows both the patient and caregiver benefit from early palliative care.The earlier a specific phone-based, palliative care support program can be introduced to caregivers, the better they will be able to cope with the caregiving experience, according to research conducted by University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Nursing investigators. The patient outcomes from the study, known as ENABLE III, were presented June 3 at the American Society of...