Dr. Rachel Walker is an oncology nurse scientist, gerontologist, and the first nurse to be named an official Invention Ambassador for the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She is an Associate Director of the UMASS Center for Personalized Health Monitoring, and serves on the American Nurses Association’s Innovation Advisory Board.
Her team’s research focuses primarily on developing supportive care, behavioral interventions, and technology to promote dignity, capability, and a sense of well-being, including sexual well-being, in the context of aging, cancer, and symptom-related disability. Their inventions-in-progress include point-of-care testing devices, wearable sensors, web-based home assessment tools, and a novel system to support generation of critical IV fluids from existing water sources in disasters and resource-starved areas.
Her global health experience includes service as a volunteer with the U.S. Peace Corps (Mali, 2002-2004), International Medical Corps (Haiti, 2010), and International Rescue Committee (Baltimore, 2005-2007). She also mentors nurse scientists at the University of Puerto Rico through an active research collaboration focused on addressing unmet needs of Puerto Rican breast cancer survivors.