2021 Alabama Chapter of HIMSS Scholarship Winners

We are excited to announce the winners of our student merit scholarships! Established and funded by the HIMSS Alabama Chapter, these scholarships are awarded to HIMSS members who exhibit academic excellence, actively engage in supporting the Alabama Chapter activities and demonstrate leadership potential in the healthcare information and management systems industry. Congratulations to the recipients below! 

  • Abigail Gunter / UA – Tuscaloosa, AL 

Abigail is seeking a Bachelor’s in Healthcare Analytics and Public Health and anticipates graduating in May 2022.  Abigail actively engages with community organizations such as the Healthcare Analytics Society and Project Health.  She recently learned about HIMSS and has found the conferences and connections available are incredible for the healthcare technology sector. Abigail desires to help other students get involved earlier and see the great opportunities available.  Abigail has plenty of enthusiasm and ambition for the future.  She desires to work in a health system or system office and use her skills “to shift American healthcare towards holistic care by using supportive data.”

  • Jonathan Patterson / UAB – Birmingham, AL 

Jonathan is seeking a Doctorate in Health Services Administration & Health Informatics and anticipates graduating in July 2022.  Both on the academic side and commercial side, Jonathan’s expertise is in data mining and data analytics. On the academic side, his research has focused on modeling the risk of adverse events. On the commercial side, Jonathan’s work ranges from real word studies of the efficacy of digital health coaching applications to measuring and quantifying an individual's engagement in their health.  In addition to his work with the Center for Health Organization Transformation (CHOT) and internship with Pack Health, Jonathan’s future plans in healthcare technology are “to create the framework and infrastructure necessary to change electronic health records to multitask learning models that will generate knowledge and improve patient outcomes.”

  • Richard Jeffrey (Jeff) Harris / UAB – New Orleans, LA 

Jeff is seeking a Masters in Health Informatics and anticipates graduating in August 2022.  Jeff practiced pharmacy for over 2 decades before incurring a life changing disability; Jeff is inspirational.  When he could no longer physically function as a pharmacist, Jeff found new interests, including writing and open-source software.  Jeff took on a volunteer opportunity teaching science to adults studying to take their high school equivalency test.  Through his love of pharmacy, his creativity, his love of technology, and meeting those courageous adults, Jeff found a new home in Health Informatics.  As for healthcare technology future plans, Jeff wants to use his experience and skills “to help create a higher quality, more cost efficient, and more equitable health system.”

  • VerCherria Goodman / UAB  – Homewood, AL 

Vercherria is seeking a Masters in Health Informatics and anticipates graduating in August 2022.  As a child, VerCherria spent most of her childhood in and out of hospitals.  As such, her interest in healthcare piqued at an early age and continues to grow.  VerCherria is passionate about achieving her goals.   Along with volunteer work as an information desk aide and infant activity room pal, VerCherria completed an administrative internship with a local neurology and pain center and is currently employed as a unit secretary at an acute care facility on the cardiothoracic surgery unit.  VerCherria’s ultimate goal is to be able to use her “educational and professional experiences to improve the quality of care for patients” and best supports the patients’ family members.


2021-2022 Student Liaison:  Heather D. Martin


Heather D. Martin is an Alabama native, Learning Health System Fellow, Graduate Research Assistant and PhD student in Health Services Administration – Health Informatics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Heather received her MSBA in finance at Auburn University and has over 10 years of experience working in financial information system design, testing, implementation, support, training and financial reporting. She is also a member of the HIMSS20 Student Case Competition First Place Winning Team and the 2021-2022 HIMSS Emerging Healthcare Leaders Program.

Heather is interested in developing, enhancing, implementing, and evaluating technologies to help practitioners and patients and becoming a health services administration and health IT researcher/teacher/trainer. Heather’s dissertation focus is findings ways health IT can help people in Alabama who suffer from substance abuse disorder while also promoting appropriate pain management. She is also the project lead of ALAHOPE, a multi-disciplinary statewide initiative partnered with the Jefferson County Department of Health to train AL health professional students about addictive substances and appropriate pain management.

“Hi. If you are an AL health IT student, I care about your success! AL and National HIMSS offer networking, scholarships, and career development opportunities tailored just for health IT students and early careerists. Please reach out to me if you would like to learn more or need assistance.”


Alabama HIMSS welcomes and encourages student involvement in our chapter.  Please contact us for volunteer opportunities. 

The Alabama Chapter of HIMSS also awards annual scholarships to Health Informatics students who are active participants in our chapter - subscribe to our email list to stay up-to-date on chapter news, events, and offerings, including scholarship announcements!


HIMSS Student Memberships

Organizational Affiliate membership

Some schools are Organizational Affiliate members of HIMSS and provide their students with a free HIMSS student membership - to see if your school participates, click here.  As of December 2019, UAB is an OA. If your school does offer complimentary OA membership to HIMSS, click here for detailed sign-up instructions.  Note: These instructions are specific to OA membership, not the individual student membership below. 

Individual Student membership   View eligibility requirements and join here