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Student News: Research, Publications, and Presentations

KPHA & SGA Officers

Meet the newly elected officers of the UofL Chapter of Kentucky Public Health Association (KPHA) and the school’s Student Government Association (SGA) for the 2020-21 academic year.

Health Services and Policy Research (HSR) Workplace Culture Study

Carmen Mitchell, MPH, a doctoral student in the Dept. of Health Management and Systems Sciences, is a researcher on the Health Services and Policy Research (HSR) Workplace Culture Study with colleagues from UCLA, UC Davis, and the University of Minnesota. The study examines the professional climate within the HSR workforce and to what extent institutions, organizations, and AcademyHealth members have engaged in the efforts recommended by the Future of Diversity and Inclusion in Health Services and Policy Research report. Mitchell became involved with this project through the AcademyHealth Disparities Interest Group Advisory Committee, which she joined in 2019 after winning the Student Op-Ed Contest. You can help measure the progress of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the health  by taking this survey: tinyurl.com/hsrworkplaceculture

International Society for Environmental Epidemiology (ISEE) Poster Presentations

Johnnie Newton, Lyndsey Blair, Dan Riggs, doctoral students in the Dept. of Epidemiology and Population Health,and and Katlyn McGraw, doctoral candidate in the Dept. of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, virtually presented posters at the ISEE in early August.

  • Newton and Blair presented two posters” (1) “Exposure to Natural Vegetation in relation to Mammographic Density” and (2) “Socioeconomic Patterns and Environmental Greenness in Relation to County-Level All-cause and Cause-specific Mortality Rates in Kentucky.” The later was also presented at the Kentucky Public Health Association virtual conference in April 2020.
  • Riggs presented “Associations between greenness and mortality by ecoregion in the United States.”
  • McGraw presented “Exposure to Volatile Organic Compounds--Acrolein, 1,3-Butadiene, and Crotonaldehyde--is Associated with Vascular Dysfunction.”

Doctoral candidate, Katlyn McGraw, awarded summer externship

In June 2020, Katlyn McGraw, MPH, doctoral candidate in the Dept. of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, gained valuable experience through the K.C. Donnelly Externship Award Supplement through the Superfund Research Program (SRP).  This award provides current SRP-funded graduate students and postdoctoral researchers with translational/transdisciplinary opportunities and experiences within other SRP-funded centers, government laboratories, or other state, local, or Tribal agencies. McGraw received a large stipend to work at Columbia University and collaborated on analysis of mixtures with the director of Colombia University’s SRP, Dr. Ana Navas-Acien during summer 2020. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the project has been remote.

Student Publications

Naiya Patel, MPH, BDS, CHOT Research Assistant, doctoral student in the Dept. of Health Management and Systems Sciences, recently published an article in the Journal of Advanced Oral Research journals about the impact on dental economics and healthcare utilization in COVID-19. Read more: here.

Dan Riggs, doctoral student in the Dept. of Epidemiology and Population Health, published an article in Environ Research that explored if exposure to air pollution is linked to vascular dysfunction. SPHIS co-authors were Ray Yeager, PhD, MPH, assistant professor, Dept. of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, and Shesh Rai, PhD, professor, Dept. of Bioinformatics and Biostatistics. Additionally, Riggs contributed to an editorial published in the Journal of the American Heart Association titled, “Environmental determinants of hypertension and diabetes: Sounding off about the effects of noise.” He also conducted a statistical analysis for a study published in the July 2020 issue of the American Journal of Physiology: Heart and Circulatory Physiology.

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