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Population, Family and Reproductive Health

Education Happenings

New Scholarships

MCH Training Grant

PopFam Student Organizing Committee


New Scholarships

MCH Training Grant

The Center of Excellence in Maternal and Child Health (MCH) in Education, Science and Practice Training Program continues to provide support for students in PFRH who are interested in MCH.  It was first awarded to the department in 1950 and continues to reach students throughout the school with its broad course offerings in MCH. This year, as part of the MCH Training Program, Anne Riley organized and facilitated two student sessions to discuss mutual interests and career plans.

An MCH trainee, Lizzie Harvey, is receiving the Paul A. and Esther C. Harper Award for 2017, the highest award from the department that recognizes excellence in a doctoral dissertation. Lizzie was also an MCH Epidemiology Fellow. Her research examined the relation of maternal hypertensive disorders and other chronic and pregnancy-associated conditions with severe maternal morbidity at delivery and postpartum morbidity as defined by hospital utilization. This year’s MCH Epidemiology Fellow is Susannah Gibbs who is working with Medicaid data to study ‘Planned out of Hospital Birth and Medicaid Policy Changes in Oregon'. She will present this work at the 30th Annual Meeting of the Society for Pediatric and Perinatal Epidemiologic Research in Seattle, WA in June 2017.  

Rebecca White was selected among students in schools of public health to attend the conference on Making Lifelong Connections sponsored by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau.  She reflected that it “was an excellent resource for me to meet people doing great work for MCH across the country, learn about new opportunities for funding and advocacy, and develop my leadership skills.” She especially “enjoyed meeting students that were doing creative work with limited time and resources.” She is the first student from our program to attend this conference.

PopFam Student Organizing Committee

PopFam Student Organizing CommitteeEngaging PFRH Students and Faculty on Social Justice

PFRH students Anna Abelson, Leah Koenig, and Yousra Yusuf gauged widespread interest among students in the department for workshops that reinforce and expand on skills learned in the department, and to identify additional opportunities for growth in a changing public health environment.

Following these discussions, the group was officially accepted as a JHSPH student group, PopFam Student Organizing Committee, with the mission to highlight a “PFRH toolkit”, to explicitly name and promote skills we feel are core to the department.

In the past month, we held three sessions that speak to this purpose.

In the first session, Beth Fredrick, Executive Director at Advance Family Planning, spoke on “Why Advocacy Matters: Effective Communication to Influence Public Health Policy”. The session was a roundtable discussion led by Beth and focused on the identification of advocacy skills for researchers and effective communication with diverse audiences. Students and faculty had an engaging discussion on the topic.

The second session with David Bishai, Professor at PFRH, explored the topic of “Reframing Power Dynamics: Evaluating Ourselves as Public Health Practitioners.” David guided students through a worksheet that reflected on core competencies attained from their training at the school. This exercise was followed by a riveting discussion of skills and topics essential to the efficacy and flexibility of public health.

Our third session was with Charvonne Holliday, Postdoc at PFRH, who led another engaging session on “The Power of Place: The Social, Political, and Economic History of Location.

The PopFam Organizing Committee is identifying further sessions with external speakers and individuals within the school for the upcoming year.

In addition, they are looking for enthusiastic, dynamic individuals to join officer positions in the group for the next academic year. For interest or any questions, please email PopFam Student Organizing Committee.