Capstone Courses and Projects

Bronx Nutrition and Fitness Initiative for Teens (B'N Fit)

Evaluation of an Adolescent Clinical Weight Loss Program
The Bronx Nutrition and Fitness Initiative for Teens (B'N Fit) is a comprehensive weight-loss intervention program within the Division of Adolescent Medicine at Montefiore Children's Hospital. The B?N Fit staff has initiated a program evaluation and requested that the Capstone team assess the progress of program participants and develop a model to evaluate improvements in risk of obesity-related co-morbidities. The staff also enlisted the team to perform a cost-effectiveness analysis to determine if the results seen thus far justify the current use of resources. The team compiled and analyzed changes in metabolic and anthropometric outcomes after the program intervention, and created a mediation model to evaluate the effect of these changes on overall risks for obesity-related co-morbidities. The team also organized financial data from the program and developed a ratio to compare total weight lost or maintained to program cost. A qualitative review was conducted of other adolescent weight-loss programs throughout the country to ascertain best practices. The results will be used by B'N Fit as part of its program evaluation, to continue funding sources, and to shape future program design.

Congressional Research Service

Current Trends in Veteran Disability Compensation
By July 2007, approximately 787,000 service members left active military duty and became eligible for benefits administered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). As the veteran population ages, service-connected conditions may arise or worsen. Congressional Research Service (CRS), a support agency of the United States Congress, asked the Capstone team to investigate reports of veterans facing lengthy delays in the adjudication of their disability compensation claims. CRS intends to use this report to supplement their current research and analysis on public policy issues, which are distributed to Congressmembers and their staff. The Capstone team investigated trends in veteran populations and disability compensation using the Annual Benefit Reports compiled by the Department of Veteran's Affairs, interviews with key informants, and analyses of available veteran survey data. Areas of interest include the aging veteran population, medical innovation, and legislation pertinent to disability compensation.

Jacob and Valeria Langleloth Foundation

Evaluation of the fields of Caregivers? and Correctional Health Care
The Langeloth Foundation is a grant-giving organization centered on the concepts of health and well-being. Caregivers? and Correctional health have been priority funding areas for Langeloth since 2003 and 2006, respectively. The key question the Foundation wished to have answered was which direction they should take regarding future Caregivers? and Correctional health care grants. The Capstone team evaluated the impact that Langeloth-funded grants in these priority areas have had in their respective fields and worked to develop an overall strategy for future funding and recommendations on the most pressing policy issues of the respective fields. The team conducted a literature review, an online survey, phone interviews, and focus groups of grantees and thought-leaders in the two fields. Finally, the team developed and recommended grant-funding goals with identified outcomes and objectives that serve as a guide to measure a grant's success.