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A look at some of the news happening at the Fielding School.
The Fielding School’s Students of Color for Public Health addressed the roots of health inequities in conjunction with National Public Health Week in April. The FSPH student group held activities and discussions across campus that examined the link between labor and health, explored efforts to mobilize communities for increased health care access, and, during the 2nd Annual Tour de UCLA, educated on the bikeability of the university and local neighborhoods.
Dr. Patricia Ganz, FSPH professor of Health Policy and Management and a pioneer in research on the quality of life for cancer survivors, helped launch Share the Journey: Mind, Body, and Wellness after Breast Cancer, a patient-centered mobile app that empowers women to be partners in the research process by tracking their symptoms and successes. Launched in partnership with Apple and Sage Bionetworks and developed by UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, Penn Medicine, and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, the app aims to understand why some breast cancer survivors recover faster than others, why their symptoms vary over time, and what can be done to improve symptoms.
Dr. Michael Jerrett joined the Fielding School in January as chair of the Department of Environmental Health Sciences. Internationally recognized for his academic work, Jerrett was named to Thomson Reuters’ 2014 Highly Cited Researchers list, ranking him in the top one percent of cited scholars in the fields of the environment and ecology. His research includes exploring the long-term effects of air pollution on cardiorespiratory diseases and the contributions of built and natural environments to activity, behavior, and obesity. Prior to joining FSPH, Jerrett was a professor at UC Berkeley.
Team FSPH Races to Health
More than 30 Fielding School students, faculty members, alumni, staff and friends took part in the 2015 ASICS LA Marathon March 15 to raise money for summer fieldwork fellowships for public health students.
A WORLD Policy Analysis Center report in March revealed that more than 170 countries have legal barriers preventing women and girls from experiencing the same rights, protections, and liberties as men and boys. WORLD’s data, which seeks to heighten global accountability and transparency, was featured in hundreds of media outlets around the world, including The Guardian, Newsweek, Washington Post, National Geographic, Forbes, and CNN.
In a series of cooking demonstrations in South Los Angeles, Fielding School student Jennifer Taylor (right), assisted here by FSPH student Lauren Wemple, shared plant-based, healthy alternatives to fatty foods with community members. The classes, held in partnership with L.A.-based nonprofit Esperanza Community Housing Corporation, were part of an FSPH initiative to support student-led community projects.
Dr. Marjorie Kagawa-Singer, whose research focuses on the cause and elimination of disparities in physical and mental health care outcomes for communities of color, delivered the Fielding School’s 41st Annual Lester Breslow Distinguished Lecture in April. The annual event, held in honor of the former FSPH dean and renowned public health leader, included the induction of this year’s FSPH Alumni Hall of Fame members: Doris Browne (MD, MPH ’68), who has dedicated her life to prevention and education programs related to cancer, women’s health, HIV/AIDS and chronic diseases, and to enhancing participation of minority and underserved populations in clinical trials; Mario Ricardo Calderón (MD, MPH ’84), who has spent more than 25 years mentoring leaders in public health and international development in dozens of countries; and Fred Wasserman (DrPH ’76, MBA, MPH ’72), who co-founded one of the first federally qualified HMOs in the U.S., for which he served as CEO. The evening event also included presentations by the 2015 Breslow Student Writing Competition finalists: Lauren Harrell, Jacob Beckerman, Jennifer Taylor, Clint Hall, and Boback Ziaeian. Each finalist received $1,000 from the competition co-sponsor, Molina Healthcare, for their presentations on the most critical ways public health affects lives. A panel of judges selected Harrell and Beckerman as co-winners of the competition; each received a $5,000 prize courtesy of the Breslow Student Fellowship Fund and the Elias family.
The Fielding School of Public Health Alumni Association presented Sarah Shannon with the 2015 Ruth Roemer Social Justice Leadership award, which recognizes community leaders advancing and protecting health in vulnerable populations. The award is named after the late Ruth Roemer, who contributed extensively to the fields of reproductive health services, environmental health, tobacco control, and more. As executive director of Hesperian Health Guides, Shannon has led work focusing on women’s health, disability, child development, primary care, and environmental health, creating resources now translated into more than 80 languages and distributed worldwide.
Water Filtration System
FSPH students spearheaded a campaign to have an environmentally conscious water filtration system installed in the UCLA Center for Health Sciences building, where the school is housed. The water station, in place since January, tracks the number of plastic bottles saved from landfills — more than 10,000 in the first four months.