PHAST Bloggers

2014 Grenada bloggers

Chinyere Neale

Chinyere Neale is the Assistant Director of Global Public Health at the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health. Her professional interests include sexual and reproductive health and peer education. She also enjoys the arts, film, and the environment.

View Chinyere’s posts.

Dana L. Thomas, MPH

Drawing of a giraffe

Dana is a Program Manager in the Office of Public Health Practice at the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health. This is her 13th time leading a PHAST field experience over the past eight years.

View Dana’s posts.

Tiffany Huang

Tiffany HuangTiffany J. Huang is a 2nd-year MPH candidate in Health Management and Policy with a commitment to improving health disparities through policy advocacy, particularly in the areas of tobacco, food and nutrition, and access to social services for underserved populations. Tiffany grew up in New Jersey, earned a B.A. in Public Health and French from the University of California at Berkeley, and previously served as a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Public Health Associate fellow.

 View Tiffany’s posts.

Rachel Jantz

Rachel Jantz

Rachel is a second-year MPH student in the epidemiology department. Her primary interests are substance abuse epidemiology and global health. In her free time, she enjoys running, concerts, and a good cup of tea.

 View Rachel’s posts.

Kevin Kamis

kevinKevin is a second-year MPH student pursuing a dual-degree from the Department of Health Behavior Health Education and the Department of Epidemiology. His interests include immigrant health and chronic disease management. His past work has focused on developing diabetes and hypertension self-management telemedicine programs for patients and their clinical teams in Bolivia.

Read Kevin’s blog.

Allison Keshishian

UntitledAllison Keshishian is a second-year MPH student studying general epidemiology.  She is a graduate of Case Western Reserve University, where she majored in biology and sociology.  Allison is interested in researching chronic diseases and health disparities.

Clare Meernik

Clare Meernik

Clare is a second-year MPH student in the International Health Epidemiology program. Her interest is in cancer disparities in different regions of the world, especially sub-Saharan Africa. For fun, she enjoys training for ultra-marathons with Rachel Jantz.

 View Clare’s posts.

Heather Olden

Heather OldenHeather Olden is a first year Epidemiology student in the International Health Program. Her interests are in infectious diseases, specifically infectious respiratory diseases and their prevalence in Latin America and other Spanish speaking countries.

 View Heather’s posts.

Benjamin Roberts


Benjamin Roberts is a second year student in the Industrial Hygiene MPH program and the former University of Michigan  Industrial Hygiene Student Association (UMIHSA) President; currently he is the chairperson of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) student local section committee. He graduated from Alma College in 2012 with a B.S. in biology. Ben is currently

working for the website as a research assistant focused on screening consumer products for toxic chemicals using non-destructive lab techniques.  He is also a graduate student assistant instructor (GSI) for EHS 653: Environmental Sampling and Analysis Laboratory. For his summer internship Ben worked at Cardno ChemRisk in Chicago, Illinois.  Ben has previous worked with the Pine River Superfund Citizen’s Task Force in St. Louis, Michigan as both a webmaster and student researcher who conducted a small survey of former Velsicol Chemical workers still residing in the area. In his free time he enjoys weightlifting, lacrosse, and following domestic politics. He is currently waiting to see if he will be accepted in to the PhD program in environmental health science.

Sarah Rogal

rogalSarah Rogal is a second year general epidemiology student with a focus in global health and ultimately hoping to practice medicine in developing countries.  Her interests include health disparities and how this impacts access to care, mental health, and preventive services.

Nana Sefa

Nana SefaNana Sefa is a physician with an interest in continuous quality improvement and cost effectiveness analysis. Dr. Sefa has been involved in healthcare on three continents and counting.

 View Nana’s posts.

Stephanie Yuen

stephanie yuenStefanie Yuen is a second-year MPH student in Hospital & Molecular Epidemiology. Prior to Michigan, she received a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health and Biological Sciences from Rutgers University. Her Public Health interests include communicable disease surveillance, emergency management and infection control within healthcare facilities.

2014 Texas bloggers

Joe Domino

Domino_PHAST+headshotJoe is a first-year MPH student in General Epidemiology and is concurrently pursuing his MD at Wayne State University School of Medicine. His research interests include health inequalities and underserved communities. He is interested in pursuing Neurosurgery after medical school. In his free time he loves to play ice hockey.

Jacqueline Dufek

IMG_5330Jacqueline Dufek is a Master of Public Health Candidate in the Health Behavior and Health Education Department with an expected graduation in April 2015. She earned her BSN from University of Michigan in 2008, and spent 5 years practicing as a nurse in Seattle, Chicago and Ann Arbor, before returning to school. She is interested in health education and empowerment, specifically within the youth population.

Chelsea Foo

cfooChelsea is a first year MPH student in general epidemiology with a graduate certificate in health informatics. Her primary interest is the role of social determinants in health outcomes, particularly in reducing the impact of HIV/AIDS.

Brianna Holland


My name is Brianna Holland, a first year Masters of Public Health Student. My focus area is Health Behavior and Health Education with an interest in Family and Community program development. I’m excited about the TX project and ready to put in work!

Pamela Johnson


Native of Jackson, MI, Pamela Johnson is a first year MPH student in HBHE. She earned her B.A. in psychology and sociology from Saginaw Valley State University and currently works as graduate student research assistant at the Center for Managing Chronic Disease in the School of Public Health. Pamela has an interest in what role African American fathers play in encouraging positive coping mechanisms among their offspring with sickle cell disease.

 Farnaz Malik

MalikFarnaz Malik is a first-year MPH student in the General Epidemiology program. Before coming to Michigan, she earned a B.A. in Integrative Biology at UC Berkeley. She is interested in global health and the intersection between infectious diseases and social epidemiology. In her spare time, she enjoys reading food blogs and running.

Ian Lang

PHASTPhotoIan Lang is a first-year MPH student in the Department of Health Behavior and Health Education. He completed his undergraduate studies at Grand Valley State University where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Public and Nonprofit Administration. He is interested in program development and evaluation, as well as mitigating health disparities through community-based public health programs.

Kaitlyn Leffert


Kaitlyn Leffert is a first year Environmental Health Sciences studying Environmental Quality and Health. She is interested in global air and water pollution and how climate change influences these dynamics.

Nicole Lockwood

lockwodNicole Lockwood is a second-year MPH candidate in the Health Behavior and Health Education department and is also working towards the Global Health certificate.  Her health interests lie in HIV prevention, sexual health, and health disparities.

Selam Misgano

SelamSelam is a first year HBHE student. Her professional interests include community organizing, health equity and social determinants of health messaging. She was born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and moved to the United States during high school. She completed her Bachelor of Science in Public Health from the University of Washington and worked as a community organizer in Detroit, Michigan immediately followed graduation. She also worked at Seattle Children’s Hospital for two years before entering graduate school. 

Kelly Serfling


Kelly is a first year MPH candidate in the Environmental Health department, with a concentration in Environmental and Occupational Epidemiology.  Her public health interests include studying the impact of the environment, particularly pollution, on health.  In the future, she hopes to apply this study to risk management and environmental justice issues. She earned a B.S. in Environmental Science in 2010 from Juniata College, in Huntingdon, PA.

Sherry Yin


Sherry is a first-year MPH candidate in the International Health Epidemiology program. She is interested in working to reduce health disparities and improve access to care here in the U.S. and around the world.

Catherine Yu 

Catherin Yu

Catherine is first year MPH student concentrating in Health Behavior and Health Education.  She is from Taiwan and finished her undergraduate in Public Health in home country too.  She is interested in the intervention to adolescents and children with the application of Health IT, the issue of mental health and body image.  She likes meeting people with different cultures, backgrounds and countries.  Also, she has a habit of collecting beautiful socks.

2014 Mississippi bloggers

Angela Eke-Usim

A1025_37581154227_9395_nngela is a  physician and second year MPH student in the General Epidemiology program. She is interested in children’s health and infection control. In her spare time she loves to travel.


Elizabeth Ly

Elizabeth LyElizabeth Ly is a second year (just finished the first year, yay!) General Epidemiology student pursuing a certificate in Health Informatics. Prior to entering the School of Public Health, Elizabeth received her B.S. in Integrative Biology and Physiology at the University of California, Los Angeles in 2012. Her public health interests include infectious disease surveillance, health disparities, and dental public health. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, relaxing on the beach, roller skating, and trying out new foods.

Jamaica Robinson

SepiaJamaica Robinson is a second-year MPH student in the Department of Epidemiology. Her interests include using stochastic models to explore neighborhood-level social determinants of health, supporting community-based health initiatives, and creating interdisciplinary bridges between health sciences. In her spare time she enjoys drinking tea and walking around cities while listening to comedy podcasts.

Jingyi Wang

headshot_PHASTJingyi Wang is a soon-to-be second year in Master of Public Health with a focus on Human Nutrition. She is from China, but she has been in the Midwest for quite a few years as she received her undergraduate degree in Environmental Health Science in Indiana. Her past experience include an internship with the Indiana Public Health Center. Her main interests are environmental nutrition and maternal and child nutrition.



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