Why did you decide to pursue a career in public health?
Public health allows me to truly be a servant leader. On a daily basis I have the opportunity and responsibility to make decisions that will directly impact and affect the lives of the patients and communities we serve in Central Florida.
How did the GSU School of Public Health prepare you for your career?
Public health is my second career. In 2008, I was at a crossroads and made the decision to focus my future on being of service to others. After researching my options and speaking to many public health professionals, I elected to launch my career at Georgia State University School of Public Health in 2010. The foundational knowledge I gained and the concepts we studied serve as the basis of my thinking and decision making.
What advice do you have for students interested in public health?
Do your research on the variety of careers that list an MPH as a required or preferred degree. Once you find your niche, a career in public health is extremely rewarding. Think about why you are interested in public health- statistics, epidemiology, administration, policy, advocacy, health education, etc. Talk to people in the field. Do your research and begin networking. This will help you choose your track and concentration.
What advice would you give to current public health students?
No one is going to hand you a career when you graduate. It’s up to you to network and research. Your professors are a great place to start! They are a tremendous gateway to your career. Take the time to get to know them. Buy them a coffee and ask them to share their story with you. Then ask them for three names and repeat the process. Pretty soon you will have a network of people that you can bounce ideas off of, that will mentor you, that will help start your career. And, don’t limit yourself to Departments of Health or government jobs when you start looking. There are plenty of nonprofit or private sector positions that you are now qualified for. But, it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. Your network is the key!
What’s your favorite GSU SPH memory?
The Association of Schools & Programs of Public Health has a campaign: “This Is Public Health.” While we didn’t go around putting the “This Is Public Health” stickers everywhere, we participated in the campaign by examining our surroundings and the built environment. We were looking for the connection between what we were studying and what was going on in our community. During the campaign is when it clicked for me that public health is everything, and everything is public health. That was the moment that I knew I made the right