MPH students in action: propelling research locally and globally

This year, students are putting their public health skills and knowledge into practice by engaging in research across communities, countries, disciplines, and beyond. Topics like COVID-19, climate change, gender-based violence, and many more are being studied by students and faculty in the contexts of equity and global health.

 

Student Spotlights

Kieu My Phi ’21, MPH’22, GHR Trainee and AMP Project Assistant

Kieu My is a GHR Trainee with assistant professor of economics LanLan Chu, PhD, exploring "Gender Disparities in Healthy Aging: A cross-national comparative study in the United States and South Korea." Kieu My is also working as a project assistant to public health faculty Liz Allen, PhD, and Leso Munala, PhD, in a pilot social justice curriculum being integrated across the Masters of Public Health program.

“I have enjoyed being Drs. Allen and Munala's project assistant for the past year, working on the social justice curriculum. Throughout the process, I have developed skills like hosting a meeting or writing competencies for classes and improving my existing skills like lesson plans and evaluation tools creation. Going through the creation and implementation process with the professors has helped me actionize the theories and concepts that I was learning in my classes.

"I decided to join Dr. Chu's Healthy Aging Research because it allowed me to look at health disparities with a public health and economics lens. Throughout this research, I learned and grew in my STATA and data analysis skills and worked on my public speaking skills through presenting our research.”

More about Kieu My

Valerie Ponce Diaz

Valerie Ponce Diaz MPH’22, Graduate Research Assistant and Research Coordinator

Valerie is the Research Coordinator for "Aging in the Time of COVID: Racism, Isolation and Meaning" with public health faculty Mary Hearst, PhD, and Angela Ekwonye, PhD, CPH. This is a National Institute on Aging Research Supplement tied to the KARE Scholars program on campus, co-PIs faculty Jill Campbell, MA, RN, PHN, CNE, CDCES; Joshua Guggenheimer, PhD; and Marcie Myers, PhD. Valerie is also working as a graduate research assistant for Mi Pequeno Mundo, a home-based Latine early intervention project in collaboration with Centro Tyrone Guzman.

“My roles through the public health department provide a valuable understanding of quantitative research and program design, implementation, and evaluation. Through the two projects I am involved in, I have the opportunity to apply class work knowledge, build upon previous experiences, and work alongside an incredible group of people.”

Bethlehem Yewhalawork

Bethlehem Yewhalawork ’17, MPH’22, GHR Trainee

Bethlehem is the GHR trainee for Munala on a research study exploring the impact of COVID-19 on gender-based violence against school-aged girls in rural and low-income urban areas of Kenya.

“I have really enjoyed working with Dr. Munala as her research assistant. I have the opportunity to apply what I've learned throughout my MPH program to the current research. I'm grateful for the experience and have learned so much through Dr. Munala and this project.”

Students’ 2021-22 Research Projects

  • Georgie Kinsman ’21, MPH’22, is a GHR Trainee with the interdisciplinary evaluation project with The Plaster House in Tanzania (PI - Kari Hartwig).
  • Kieu My Phi ’21, MPH’22, Jennifer Marie Brooks MPH’22, and Bridget Ring MPH’22 are completing their capstone projects using data from Kusamala+, a community-based intervention with the Catholic Medical Mission Board in Zambia.
  • Mary-Genevieve Moisan ’22, MPH’23 is a volunteer for and Valerie Ponce Diaz MPH’22 is a graduate research assistant for Mi Pequeno Mundo, a home-based Latine early intervention project in collaboration with Centro Tyrone Guzman.
  • Amanda Zenk MPH’22- AMP, is a research assistant to Allen and Munala. She is working on a grant for a proposed research project: "Kenyan women bearing the cost of climate chang : the relationship between severe weather events and domestic violence in Kenya."
  • Kieu My Phi is the GHR Trainee and Mary-Genevieve Moisan is the research assistant with Chu to explore "Gender Disparities in Healthy Aging: A cross-national comparative study in the United States and South Korea."
  • Maren Knep MPH’22 is a GHR Trainee Research Assistant on the project "Community Health Volunteers are changing Social Norms in Peru" (P.I. Liz Allen).
  • Kieu My Phi, Vanessa Kloepfer ’22, Pragya Karmacharya ’21, MPH’22, and Vy Phung ’20, MPH ’21 are co-authors on a manuscript titled “We will all age and one day be older adults ourselves: College student reflections facilitating intergenerational compassionate presence (CP) sessions for older adults” submitted to the journal Emerging Adulthood.
  • Kieu My Phi, is an AMP project assistant to Allen and Munala in the social justice curriculum.
  • Valerie Ponce Diaz is the research coordinator for "Aging in the Time of COVID: Racism, Isolation and Meaning" with Hearst and Ekwonye. This is a National Institute on Aging Research Supplement tied to the KARE Scholars program on campus (co-PIs Campbell, Guggenheimer, and Myers).
  • Bethlehem Yewhalawork ’17, MPH’22 is a GHR trainee research assistant for Munala on a research study exploring the impact COVID-19 has had on gender-based violence against school-aged girls in rural and low-income urban areas of Kenya