Julia Kaufman graduates with distinction, wins Outstanding Capstone Award

Undergraduate global health major Julia Kaufman graduated from Duke University with distinction. She completed a senior honors thesis in global health under Dr. Eve Puffer and Dr. Bonnie Kaiser (postdoc in the Puffer lab). Julia studied how lay counselors integrate cultural and contextual practices into an evidence-based family therapy intervention, designed by Dr. Puffer, to improve adolescent mental health and family functioning. Julia described that:

“The most interesting thing I learned throughout the project related to the different ways in which counselors incorporate religion into therapy. Skilled counselors recognized the importance of prayer to family members, but also emphasized that families should take action alongside prayer and used religious appeals to support families’ own efforts.”


Julia was also part of a team of 4 students who won the Duke Global Health Institute Outstanding Capstone Award. The team’s award-winning project, developed as part of a capstone class with Dr. Dennis Clements, involved developing a culinary skills training program to reduce recidivism among Durham’s formerly incarcerated population.

Julia now heads to East Africa for continued work in global health.

Outstanding Capstone Award Winning Team [Photo by Jim Wallace]