I AM FPHLP 2018: Andrew Nguyen

Andrew NguyenAndrew Nguyen is currently a senior at the University of California, Los Angeles, majoring in Environmental Science with a minor in Environmental Systems and Society. Andrew decided to apply to FPHLP because he was interested in learning about how he could contribute to the field of public health. In addition, he wanted to participate in the curriculum days and the CDC conference.

Andrew's field placement site was at the Michigan Community Health Worker Alliance (MiCHWA) in Ann Arbor, MI. During his placement, Andrew developed and implemented a social media campaign to promote the work of community health workers (CHWs). He also conducted interviews with CHWs to learn about their experiences and their impact on patients with chronic disease to maintain current advocacy efforts for policy changes.

Through FPHLP, Andrew feels he was able to grow and learn more about himself both professionally and personally. He learned that public health encompasses any field you can think of, and that it is a collaborative effort. A memorable highlight for him was presenting his MiCHWA research at the CDC Undergraduate Showcase. The greatest challenge for Andrew during the program was balancing the work from his field placement, curriculum days, and outside activities but he learned how to manage and prioritize.

Since Andrew's departure from the program, he has participated in a volunteer program in Japan and facilitated group discussions for high school students regarding Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) and global issues. Currently, his immediate plans are to make the most out of his senior year in college. As for future plans, he wants to pursue a Master's of Public Health (MPH) degree and learn how he can contribute to mental health and global health efforts.

Andrew would recommend future FPHLPers to enter their field placement with an open heart and mind. He suggests that students view any field placement, regardless of whether it was their first or last choice, as a chance for them to grow as an individual, both professionally and personally. He advises students to form relationships with their preceptor and ask for specific projects and tasks that align with their interests.