Q: Please tell us about yourself – where did you live before Seattle and what were you doing?
A: After growing up in upstate New York, I earned a B.A. in Psychology from the George Washington University in Washington, DC, where I gained research experience working on a risky health behavior study. Following graduation, I served as a Community Health Educator in the Peace Corps in Cameroon. I spent two years in Northwest Cameroon developing and implementing informal health education programs, including a project to show support for people living with HIV/AIDS through improved hygiene and sanitation practices. Before moving to Seattle in September 2017, I was working for the National Science Foundation, where I developed review materials for meetings in which research proposals for organismal biology were reviewed. I managed the grant budget for three programs in my division.
Q: What’s your academic focus and what research are you doing as a Research Assistant (RA)?
A: As a new graduate student, I anticipate my academic focus evolving as I gain new skills and knowledge in public health. My current focus is on global women’s health, specifically improving reproductive health education and access. As a Research Assistant with Dr. Grace John-Stewart at the Global Center for Integrated Health of Women, Adolescents and Children (Global WACh), I am currently working on developing a protocol for a mixed methods research study that will investigate the patterns and correlates of PrEP adherence in adolescent girls and young women in Kenya and explore ways to improve PrEP counseling for this population.
Q: What’s been the most valuable part of your Research Assistantship thus far?
A: My Research Assistantship has allowed me to better understand how different components contribute to the design and execution of a research study. I joined the study in its beginning stages and I am looking forward to watching the study unfold with researchers from diverse backgrounds share their unique expertise and insight.
Jaclyn Escudero is a recipient of the Department of Global Health Graduate School Fund for Excellence and Innovation (GSFEI) Top Scholar Award.