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Naushira Pandya, M.D., C.M.D.

Geriatrics Chair
Director of the Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program
(954) 262-1425

Naushira Pandya is professor and chair of the Department of Geriatrics at the Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine and the project director of the Health Resources and Services Administration-funded Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program. She is a certified medical director and a geriatrics fellowship program director at Aventura Hospital and Medical Center.

Pandya has an active clinical practice and teaches health professions students, residents, and fellows. In addition, she collaborates with health professionals in clinical research. The focus of her publications has been on the care of frail older adults, especially those with diabetes. She is board certified in internal medicine, geriatrics, endocrinology, and metabolism.

She is past president of the American Medical Directors Association National Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine and past chair of the Interdisciplinary Clinical Practice Committee. She has participated in the development of multiple clinical guidelines and position statements and is recognized for her work in the area of diabetes in the elderly. Pandya also holds the distinction of being a Fulbright Senior Specialist Scholar.

Sweta Tewary, Ph.D., M.S.W., BID.

Administrative Director of SFGWEP
Assistant Professor    
(954) 262-4015

Sweta Tewary is an experienced health care professional with specific training in the field of health care and technology. She is an assistant professor with the Department of Geriatrics and is also the administrative director of a federally funded Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) grant—the Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program. She has worked on multiple grants funded through the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute, the Children’s Trust, HRSA, and the Retirement Research Foundation. Most of Tewary’s work involved developing program evaluations, measurements, identifying data trends, opportunities for program services improvement, making recommendations for future funding opportunities to enhance services, using data to explore and develop sustainability, and collaborating with health care providers for project implementation. She is passionate about data analytics and investigating questions that can help improve the health of the community, promote health equity, and contribute to a culture of health. Tewary has been involved in multiple projects with innovative outcomes that have led to the success of many organizations. Some of her strengths are designing evaluation protocols, conducting statistical analysis to employ the best available data using appropriate social-science research techniques, curriculum development, and developing quality-improvement measures.


Faculty and Staff



Denise Pryor Kruszynski, A.P.R.N., FNP-BC  


Family Nurse Practitioner
Clinical Trainer for the Age Friendly Health System    

Denise Pryor Kruszynski is an advanced practice registered nurse with five years’ experience in primary and urgent care, women’s health, minor dermatology, and clinical procedures. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Barry University and later obtained a Master of Science in Nursing from Nova Southeastern University. Her main roles include assessing, diagnosing, treating and managing complex patients, ordering and interpreting lab/imaging tests, medication   therapy, and referrals, as appropriate.

Kruszynski furthered her passion of optimizing patient well-being with her conversant skills in English and Spanish and is knowledgeable in Hierarchical Condition Category coding and health reimbursement arrangement . She is interested in promoting wellness throughout the life span through nutritional healing and fitness.


Lisa Tafares, M.Ed.

Administrative Coordinator III
Curriculum Site Coordinator, SFGWEP    

Lisa Tafares is an administrative professional with 20 years of experience managing academic and medical departments at the University of Miami. She currently serves as the curriculum and site coordinator for the NSU South Florida Geriatrics Workforce Enhancement Program. She received her bachelor’s degree in psychology in 2008 and her master’s degree in education in 2018 with a specialization in higher education leadership. Tafares is in the process of choosing a doctorate that combines her passions—psychology and education with geriatrics—to help improve the treatment of senior citizens. She aims to use her education and experience to bring awareness about health issues that affect people as they age and improve quality of care.

Kimberly Valenti, M.Ed.

Medical Education Program Director
Interprofessional Education and Practice Coordinator, SFGWEP    
(954) 262-1650

Kimberly Valenti has been with NSU’s Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine (KPCOM) for nine years. Before her role in medical education, Valenti worked for the KPCOM Office of Innovation and Research writing grants while working on multiple interprofessional initiatives with the Center for Interprofessional Education and Practice. She currently serves as the program director for the Master of Science in Medical Education program and the director of interprofessional education initiatives for the KPCOM.  In addition, Valenti holds a leadership position, alongside Elizabeth Swann, Ph.D., ATC, for the recently transitioned NSU-HPD Center for Interprofessional Education and Practice, housed under the HPD Department of Educational Development.
Marie Dezine, M.S., Data Analyst, SFGWEP

Marie Dezine, M.S.

Data Analyst, SFGWEP    

Marie Dezine is a recent graduate of St. Thomas University, where she received her Masters in Bioethics. She is passionate about health & ethics. She has previously worked with grants that assisted patients in the Ryan White Program, where she was able to assist the patients find affordable housing & health insurance. Marie worked as a healthcare navigator for the Healthcare Market Place to assist many patients in communities that face many challenges with health literacy. Dezine is currently the data analyst for South Florida Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program.
Oksana Shnayder, Administrative Assistant II

Oksana Shnayder, B.S.

Program Manager, SFGWEP    

Oksana Shnayder has a long-standing career in accounting and finance and is highly skilled in financial reporting, budgeting, audit, and internal controls. She has a Bachelor of Science in Finance and worked in the banking sector and real estate investment industry for the past 15 years. She has recently earned a degree in Psychology from Florida International University. She is passionate about pursuing further education in Mental Health, Developmental Disabilities, and Applied Behavior Analysis. Oksana is actively engaged in local community events and volunteering opportunities, including local food banks, community-based immigrant assistance programs, and free English tutoring to international students. She hopes to employ her analytical, organizational, and problem-solving skills and her great desire to help the underserved community by promoting the growth and success of the South Florida Geriatric Workforce Enhancement Program.



This project is supported by the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of an award totaling $3.5M with 25% financed with nongovernmental sources. The contents of this website are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official views of, nor an endorsement, by HRSA, HHS, or the U.S. Government.

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