March 01, 2013

Emily M. Fredericks, PhD

Emily M. Fredericks, PhD
What do you do at UMHS?

I am a pediatric psychologist in the Department of Pediatrics and Communicable Diseases. The majority of my clinical work is conducted within the Pediatric Liver Transplant Clinic, where I strive to improve quality of life of pediatric transplant recipients and their families. My research aims to improve self-management skills among adolescent transplant recipients using technology such as text messaging. As an educator, I have the privilege to teach medical residents, psychology students and fellows.

What do you enjoy most about your work?

I love the collaborative spirit of the Pediatric Liver Transplant Clinic team, an integrated group providing the best possible care to our patients and families. When I started at the U-M as a fellow, I had never met a transplant recipient. Now, I know hundreds of children and adolescents who have received the gift of life. It is incredibly rewarding and humbling.

When you’re not working, what do you do?

I spend as much time as possible with my husband, Jon, and two daughters, Kate and Claire. We all think “family days” are pretty awesome. I also coach my daughter’s soccer team, and recently I ran my first half-marathon.

What was the last book you read?

I read a lot of children’s books! I’m also reading Train Like a Mother: How to Get Across Any Finish Line — and Not Lose Your Family, Job, or Sanity by Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea.

What’s the most thrilling or adventurous thing you’ve ever done?

In 2005, I attended Camp Michitanki, a summer camp for pediatric transplant recipients, and witnessed campers climbing trees 20 feet in the air, walking across a suspended log, and ziplining down. The campers encouraged me to try, but I am afraid of heights. One young girl proclaimed, “I had a heart and lung transplant, and I did it!” I nearly had a panic attack as I climbed up the tree and traversed the log. But, ziplining down was thrilling. The cheers from the young campers below brought tears to my eyes.

What’s your favorite spot on campus? In Ann Arbor?

Nichols Arboretum. I love running the trails through the Arb to Gallup Park. Our family likes to climb the stairs in the woods down to the Huron River, explore the Peony Gardens, and build fairy houses.

What is something your colleagues don’t know about you?

I am a Notre Dame fan, and am vocal in my allegiance to the Fighting Irish. My colleagues know that I support the University of Michigan. But, they do not know that after nearly 10 years of saying, “Go Blue!” I actually mean it. So, “Hail to the Victors!” — except when they are playing Notre Dame.