Health Metrics and Evaluation

Where did you live before coming to UW and/or where are you from originally?

I’m originally from Arlington, Texas but for the last 4 years I’ve been living in Durham, North Carolina and attending Duke University.

What is your background in public health/global health?

In undergrad, I got a B.A. in Global Health along with a B.S. in Biology where I focused on ecology. I’ve always enjoyed finding ways to demonstrate links between environmental health and human health. I worked for a lab in college that investigated this connection, and did a couple months of fieldwork in Madagascar researching the epidemiological consequences of deforestation on vector-borne diseases.

Why did you choose to get your MPH in global health at the UW?

I chose to get my MPH at UW because many of the world’s leaders in global health – particularly the Health Metrics field which I’m a part of – are found at UW. I knew that I was passionate about advocating for environmental justice, addressing social inequities, combating colonialist ideologies, and promoting health, but I also knew that I wanted to back up my stances with world-class statistical approaches. I thought if anywhere could provide the necessary knowledge and platform to accomplish this goal, it would be the UW.

What has the cohort experience been like for you (so far)?

I really like my cohort! We’re genuinely friends, not just classmates or coworkers. The odds of you finding a great friend in a smaller group of people are surprisingly high when you share so many beliefs and interests with them. My favorite thing about the field of global health is seeing how many different backgrounds people can have, but end up working on the same issue just from different angles.

What do you enjoy most about Seattle?

I’m from Texas. It’s so nice to be able to go outside in the Summer. I was warned that Seattle would be a dreary place to be, but it sure is gorgeous 8 months out of the year. The other thing about Texas is there’s no place close to go for little weekend trips. In Seattle there’s so many great places to visit. I’ve taken short weekend trips with friends to Portland, Olympic National Park, and the San Juan Islands. It’s pretty great.

What advice do you have for students who are applying for the program?

My advice would be targeted to people considering going straight from undergrad to grad school. I saw quite a few of my friends from college continue straight to grad school because the grad school application seemed less intimidating than the job search. If that feels like you, my advice would be that grad school will still be here in a year or two after you’ve tried out a job for a bit. Real world experience will not only make your grad school application stronger, but it will also help steer you towards a program that’s a good fit for you. That said, if you’re confident in applying to global health programs, the UW is a great place to be.