|Luxi Ji, M.P.H.
Class of 2010
Health Analytics Concentration
Please tell us about some of your activities since your graduation from the MPH program?
While I graduated in January 2010 from the Graduate Program in Public Health (GPPH) at Stony Brook University, I got my research abstract accepted for an oral presentation at the 138th APHA Annual Meeting in November 2010 in Denver, CO. I worked together with my Faculty Advisor - Dr. Hongdao Meng - to improve the methods and writing of the manuscript. After I submitted the paper in June 2010, I started my public health internship with our Graduate Program in Public Health. During the summer of 2010, I worked as a data analyst and researcher with Dr. Raymond Goldsteen to enter data gathered from various respected health organizations, in-putting population- and health-related characteristics within various countries into Excel database. Then I described and compared different health care systems in the world. In mid-August, I assisted with the 2010 New Student Orientation Brochure. In the fall semester of 2010, I worked as a Teaching Assistant for Jamie Romeiser’s course HPH562 Data Management and Informatics. And at the same time, I worked with Dr. Karen Goldsteen and three students on the Long Island Health Atlas. I also provided administrative support to our MPH Academic Coordinator -- Jonathan Ragone – by creating an admissions database of MPH students from 2004 to 2010.
In February 2011, I began working as a Data Administrator with New York State Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) Coordinator-- Professor Colleen Baker in the Division of Chronic Disease Surveillance and Epidemiology, New York State Department of Health in Albany, NY. I am working on surveillance data cleaning of New York State and my career goal is to become an expert in the BRFSS.
How has your MPH degree influenced your career?
My concentration is Evaluative Science. Many of my core courses were statistics or science-related. It took me 1.5 years to complete the degree, including a 3-credit practicum (though I started my practicum in the second semester and finished it a year later. I am happy with my degree mostly because it is a very comprehensive program with health research, as well as business and policy related courses. I received solid training in statistics, data management, program planning and evaluation, and epidemiology. The MPH degree gave me a broad view of the possible activities that I could perform as a health care researcher. I felt like my MPH study experience enabled me to bring something substantial to my present work. Having those skills and theoretical background will help me in attaining my goal in public health.
What advice would you give a new student just starting the program?
As a public health student, it is always important to broaden your general knowledge and prepare to help others. So during your study, join our OPHSA, talk to others, collaborate on projects, and participate in volunteer activities. In addition, it is important to have some sensitivity in public health. I was asked about the human Salmonella enteritis infections associated with eggs in an job interview in early September 2010 in California. Though most of my time was spent in New York State and the infections had not been reported in NYS, it is an important public health issue in the whole country. What’s more, a lot of public health jobs need you to write reports, so I highly recommend new students to take some writing courses. And if I had another chance, I would not choose to graduate so soon and would take more courses related community health and get involved in more projects.
Posted Spring 2011