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From Our Alumni
While working on my Bachelor’s of Psychology, I had the opportunity to work in a child development clinic. When engaging with families about their child’s psychological health, I realized that there were a multitude of factors influencing the patients health and well being and that traditional treatment by a psychologist or psychiatrist was limited in addressing the issues. I started investigating the scientific literature to identify terminology for these factors and in my search I discovered the field of Public Health. I began reading about the Ecological Model of Health and the social determinants of health. After a little more research about the field of Public Health, I decided to pursue a Master’s of Public Health at UAMS with an emphasis in Health Behavior and Health Education. The most important lesson I learned while pursuing this degree is that Public Health touches every facet of our lives from the quality of the air we breathe to the safety standards in the automobiles we drive to national agricultural policy to immunizations for our children. Good public health practice and policy silently ensures the well being of our people. The courses taught me skills related to public health practice and research. With these skills, I was able to find a job working in childhood obesity policy evaluation and community food systems evaluation. I am interested in how food influences our health, culture, economy, and environment and my MPH has given me the opportunity to follow my passion. Now enrolled in the Doctorate of Public Health in Leadership, I want continue working on understanding food systems and the influence on health. I encourage you to explore the field of public health for yourself.
Amanda Philyaw Perez, MPH
University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences