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Global Health Program Blog

Notes From the Field

Karis Barker

Karis Barker is a second year MPH student in Community Health Sciences with a concentration in Global Health. She is completing her applied practice experience in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with The Elizabeth Fry Society (E-FRY). E-FRY is an organization that offers a wide variety of services to help people overcome barriers that perpetuate trauma and poverty. Because many clients identify as indigenous women, E-FRY programs incorporate indigenous customs to promote culturally competent healing.

Karis is focusing on program evaluation and research but she has opportunities to participate in other aspects of E-FRY such as assisting clients with immediate needs (referral to shelter, distribution of hygiene products/food/clothing); setting up talking circles for indigenous elders and clients; making traditional ribbon skirts and shirts; and attending inter-agency meetings.

Karis is looking forward to applying what she is learning about public health in Canada to her studies and her career as a public health professional. To learn more about Karis' experience in Canada, feel free to check out her blog here.

 

Daniel Drzewiecki

Daniel Drzewiecki is a second year MPH student in Epidemiology with a Global Health Concentration. This summer, Daniel will be traveling to St. Kitts and Nevis to conduct a needs assessment for disaster preparedness with a combined research team from UIC and UNC. This needs assessment will involve conducting community surveys, key informant interviews, data cleaning, data entry, and data analysis.

St. Kitts and Nevis were mostly unscathed by the 2017 hurricanes, making these islands an area of interest for disaster preparedness research. Daniel is looking forward to applying his combined knowledge and passion of global public health in the Caribbean with other students, faculty, and staff. Along with completing the project while in St. Kitts and Nevis, Daniel looks forward to exploring and participating in the vast experiences that each island has to offer. To learn more about Daniel's experience in St. Kitts and Nevis, feel free to check out his blog here.

 

 

 

 

Christine Fukuda

Christine Fukuda is a second year MPH student in Epidemiology who is traveling to Kisumu, Kenya this summer 2018. Christine will be supporting an observational study nested within a larger randomized controlled trial investigating the impact of menstrual cup use in school age girls. The project was recently implemented in April of this year and is examining the effects of menstrual cups on the vaginal microbiome, STI susceptibility and sexual behaviors.

To learn more about Christine's experience while in Kisumu, Kenya, feel free to check out her blog here.

 

 

 

 

 

Celina Garza

Celina Garza is a second year MPH student in Community Health Sciences with a concentration in Global Health. This summer, Celina is traveling to Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico to complete her applied practice experience at the Instituto Nacional de Salud Publica (INSP) of Mexico. Celina’s applied practice experience focuses on the social determinants of health that impact vulnerable communities. Specifically she will be working on a feasibility analysis of incorporating health workers with indigenous backgrounds into the existing health services that focus on sexual and reproductive health in multiple states. Along with interviewing, transcribing, and analyzing the qualitative data, Celina hopes to do some traveling while in Mexico!

To learn more about Celina's experience in Cuernavaca, Mexico, feel free to check out her blog here.

 

 

 

 

 

Virginia Mason

Virginia Mason is a second year MPH student in Community Health Sciences with concentrations in Global Health and Maternal and Child Health. She is completing her applied practice experience at RefugeeOne, located in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois. RefugeeOne is an organization that provides resettlement, wellness, educational, immigration, and vocational services to refugees resettling in the United States. While at RefugeeOne, Virginia is serving as the Medical Case Management intern. In this role, she aids clients in navigating the healthcare system, performs an evaluation of the current Medical Case Management program, creates and delivers culturally humble health workshops (centered on reproductive health), learns from the various departments within the organization, and engages in various trainings.

Outside of her applied practice experience, Virginia is working as a Research Assistant for the Department of Disability and Human Development (DHD) and Graduate Assistant for the Center of Excellence in Maternal and Child Health at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is excited to tie these various professional opportunities together to further her understanding of women's healthcare on a global scale.

To learn more about Virginia's experience with RefugeeOne, feel free to check out her blog here.

 

 

 

Carrie Nacht

Carrie Nacht is a second year MPH student in Epidemiology with a concentration in Global Health and a duel-degree MBA. Carrie’s professional goals are related to pursuing a job working on sexual and reproductive health, hopefully from an international standpoint. Carrie is spending her summer completing her field experience in Kisumu, Kenya working at the Nyanza Reproductive Health Society at the UNIM clinic. The project she will be working on focuses on anti-microbial resistant strains of gonorrhea in patients around Kisumu.

Carrie will be spending her spare time in Kisumu staying active with her housemates, catching up on reading, traveling around Eastern Africa, and attempting to learn Swahili. To learn more about Carrie's experience while in Kisumu, Kenya, feel free to check out her blog here.

 

 

Meghna Nagam

Meghna is a second year MPH student in Community Health Sciences with a concentration in Global Health. This summer, Meghna is working with Child Family Health International and the Center for Rural Andean Health in El Alto, Bolivia. Recently, El Alto, located adjacent to the more affluent city La Paz, has seen a rise in adolescent pregnancy. Meghna will be helping design and teach sexual and reproductive health classes to adolescents and young adults. She will also be assisting with an anti-violence and a nutrition program that targets children and their parents in the community.

In addition to her applied practice experience, Meghna hopes to explore Bolivia and learn more about its people, culture, and languages. To learn more about Meghna's experience in El Alto, Bolivia, feel free to check out her blog here.

 

 

 

Jasmin Sanchez

Jasmin Sanchez is a second year MPH student in Community Health Sciences with a concentration in Global Health. This summer, Jasmin is completing her applied practice experience at the Instituto Nacional de Salud Publica (INSP) in Cuernavaca, Mexico. The project that she is working on will look at the social determinants that lead to the high rates of teen suicide in 6 different states throughout Mexico. Jasmin will be helping publish reports to each state with their findings. This project will be using Atas ti, to code the interviews of the adolescents as well as the nurses and government officials. Jasmin will also be completing a literature review with successful suicide prevention programs to help strengthen recommendations for the states who are participating in this project.

Jasmin was able to do some traveling during her first week in Cuernavaca and went to the Pyramids of Teotihuacan, La Gruta, Palacio de Bellas Artes and Frida Kahlo Museum. She is hoping to go to Grutas Tolantongo and a water park before returning to the US. Jasmin will be using this summer to take in the culture as well as reflecting on her lived experiences and identity.

To learn more about Jasmin's experience in Cuernavaca, Mexico, feel free to check out her blog here.

 

Zainab Khomusi

Zainab is a second year MPH student in Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences with a concentration in Global Health. She is staying in Chicago for her field practicum with Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Memorial Hospital. She is working with the Consortium to Lower Obesity in Chicago Children (CLOCC), an obesity prevention program with many strategies to prevent obesity such as environmental change, public education, advocacy, and program evaluation.

Zainab is specifically helping to support CLOCC’s early childhood work by supporting the Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative and providing assistance to hospitals in Chicago. She works with Mother/Baby and Labor and Delivery Units speaking with hospital staff about practices relating to breastfeeding and infant care. She will be comparing the successes and challenges of becoming a Baby Friendly designated hospital in Chicago with other countries around the globe.

Along with her field practicum, Zainab is working on a capstone studying the amount of arsenic formula-fed infants are exposed to via drinking water in various countries. She is excited to tie the early childhood knowledge she is gaining from her internship with environmental contamination research. To learn more about Zainab's experience, please feel free to check out her blog here.

 

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