Meet some of our current students. Learn why students chose Hopkins, the research they’re pursuing and their experiences while in the program.
Khudejha Asghar, PhD Student
My primary research interests include prevention and response to violence against historically marginalized and vulnerable populations, with a particular focus on relationships between social norms, gender, and the life course in the public and private spheres. I am looking forward to gaining a deeper understanding of research methods and advocacy strategies from the interdisciplinary faculty and staff in the PRFH department. Prior to starting at JHSPH, I worked at the intersection of violence against women and children in humanitarian contexts, and projects include a mixed-methods randomized controlled trial evaluation of an adolescent girls’ empowerment and violence prevention program in DRC, Ethiopia, and Pakistan; qualitative research on social norms affecting family violence in DRC and Myanmar; qualitative participatory research on drivers of household violence in Colombia; and cognitive interviewing to assess applicability of the Violence Against Children Survey in Colombia.
Dana Sarnak, PhD Student
My education and experience reflect my commitment and passion to sexual and reproductive health and demography, particularly their intersection around fertility. Broadly, I’m interested in what conditions and policies support women achieving their child- bearing and spacing goals. I want to study how fertility changes affect societies and populations. I’m particularly interested in the links to contraception and how these are related to women and their roles in society.
Bianca Smith, PhD Student
My decision to attend Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health was based on the Department of Population, Family, and Reproductive Health (PFRH)'s commitment to social justice and health equity. University-affiliated institutes, such as the Urban Health Institute, highlighted the impact PFRH was making not only in the research world, but also in the Baltimore community. My research interests surround the impact of structural racism on health outcomes in African American adolescents and young adults.
Carrie Wolfson, PhD Student
My primary research interests are the health vulnerabilities associated with poverty uniquely experienced by women. Within this broad area, I am interested in exploring reproductive health at the population level, particularly disparities in outcomes among vulnerable communities and across racial/ethnic subgroups within the US. I further plan to examine the role of government programs and policies in reducing or exacerbating such inequities. I chose the PFRH department at JHSPH because of the faculty -- they have the expertise to help me further develop the topical and methodological skills I need to explore these pressing issues.