The Survery of the Health of Wisconsin strongly encourage students to use our data. In the past, students have used SHOW data for master of public health capstone projects, theses, dissertations and to explore interesting topics that might lead to publication.

Information about Survey of the Health of Wisconsin questionnaires, biological specimen program and SHOW documentation is available to any researcher, student or otherwise, interested in using Survey of the Health of Wisconsin data. The codebooks available include basic frequency output for all variables collected by SHOW.


The Survey of the Health of Wisconsin benefits from having motivated students work with us on a number of projects from quality control to publication support. If you are interested in working for SHOW, please email Tammy LeCaire,, to find out about research and work opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students.

Ready to start a project with SHOW?

Students seeking to work with SHOW should consult the following steps:

  1. Find a SHOW mentor. Students working with SHOW data must have a SHOW mentor. This mentor will provide guidance on Survey of the Health of Wisconsin protocols and analytic methodology required when using SHOW data. If students need assistance matching their interests with a SHOW mentor, they should contact the SHOW Data Coordinating Center at for suggestions.
  2. Fill out a letter of intent indicating the following items:
    • name, educational program and department (i.e., MPH, PhD, etc.)
    • program advisor
    • working title/topic
    • background research and brief literature review
    • research aims and timeline
    • letter of intent template
      The purpose of the letter of intent is to facilitate multiple students who may want to work on similar topics, and to ensure that you have sufficiently thought about your research idea. Once filled out, email the letter to
  3. Make a data request. Once your letter of intent is approved, a data request form  must be completed. Your SHOW mentor will need to sign off on this data request.
A student shows off research data

Meet our current students

Shannah Eggers

Shannah Eggers, PhD candidate

Eggers is a PhD student in population health who received a bachelor of science in microbiology from UW-Madison, and spent many years as a food safety scientist before starting graduate school. Her research interests include built and physical environments, health behaviors, health prevention and the microbiome.

SHOW project: Previous projects include investigating the relationship between urbanicity and bicycle helmet use, and working in conjunction with the Obesity Prevention Initiative to report on obesity prevalence and comorbidities in Wisconsin.

Eggers currently works on the WARRIOR project, an ancillary SHOW study, examining the relationship between diet, the gut microbiome, and colonization by multi-drug resistant organisms.


Unnur Gudnadottir

Unnur Gudnadottir, PhD candidate

Gudnadottir is a PhD student in the Department of Population Health Sciences. Prior to becoming a PhD student, she completed a masters of science degree in social psychology from University of Iceland. Her previous research has focused on subjective well-being, materialistic values and body dissatisfaction.

Her interests include how social and environmental factors impact individuals and population health, as well as the making of questionnaires and survey methodology.

SHOW project: interview quality control, codebook production, data requests, county-level reports

Ellie Holzhausen

Ellie Holzhausen, PhD Candidate

I am a PhD student in Epidemiology. I received my bachelor of science in Mathematics, with a certificate in Computer Science from UW-Madison in 2012. Prior to beginning graduate school, I worked in technical support for EHR software.

SHOW project: Holzhausen currently works as a project assistant for the Obesity Prevention Initiative. Her focus is collaborating with the Survey of Health of Wisconsin to create state-wide estimates of health- and obesity-related measures.


Alexandra Spicer

Alexandra Spicer, undergraduate, statistics major

Spicer is an undergraduate senior majoring in statistics with a certificate in integrated studies in science, society, and engineering. She plans to attend graduate school and study biostatistics. Spicer enjoys applying statistics and data science to health data. Her current interests include model building, electronic health records, and precision medicine.

SHOW projects: codebook production, quality control, statistical summaries/analyses, and data requests