I hope one day I can make my community a better place by using what my WVU public health education has taught me.
Why did you choose WVU for your public health education?
I chose WVU for my public health education because it is close to home (Wheeling, WV). I always knew I wanted to come back to Wheeling and work for my community. The WVU School of Public Health not only taught me the global impact public health has, but also the community impact it has. I hope one day I can make my community a better place by using what my WVU public health education has taught me.
How did WVU prepare you to be a public health professional?
WVU prepared me to be a public health professional by giving me real life situations in classes and my capstone where public health is needed. It gave me the ability to take a situation and be hands-on. I was so comfortable coming in to my new job because they prepared me for situations that could arise.
Briefly describe your current role as a public health practitioner.
My current role is a health inspector at the Wheeling-Ohio County Health Department. My everyday duties require inspections of restaurants, septic systems and local daycares. I also work closely with our rabies program, whether that be an animal bite or a wild animal found in the community that needs rabies testing. I am in charge of the mosquito program where we trap mosquitoes and send them to be tested for different diseases. With the recent pandemic, I have had the opportunity to work at COVID-19 testing sites and vaccine clinics in my community.
What advice would you give today’s Public Health students?
The advice I would give to Public Health students today is to put yourself out there. Stay curious, ask questions, be involved. Public health is changing every day. There is always something new to be discovered and you never know if you could be the one to discover it.
What does public health mean to you?
Public health to me means community health...the health of my community...general sanitation of community, disease prevention of my community, hygiene of the individuals in my community. If there is any way I can make that better, easier for my community, I want to do that.