I AM FPHLP 2021: Mindy Tran

Mindy Tran, FPHLP 2021

Mindy Tran was part of the Michigan FPHLP 2021 cohort. She is currently a senior at the University of Southern California (USC), studying Global Health. In Summer 2021, Mindy interned at Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley. 

Mindy was motivated to participate in Michigan FPHLP because she needed guidance and experience. She always knew that she wanted to pursue a career in global public health, but felt unsure of how to get to the next step. Seeing that the program offered weekly seminars and mentoring sessions, Mindy knew Michigan FPHLP would help her feel more confident in her future public health plans. Finally, Mindy’s undergraduate education has been filled with a bountiful supply of knowledge, but no hands-on skills training which is why she was eager to participate in Michigan FPHLP and work at a local field placement site.

While interning at Habitat for Humanity of Huron Valley, Mindy’s role was to help identify community needs and locate resources to address those needs. To accomplish this, Mindy first analyzed qualitative data from a survey that gauged whether or not local homeowners were interested in participating in personal development classes. Next, she summarized the data into a handout so that key stakeholders within Habitat could better understand the desires of the community. Additionally, Mindy researched local personal development resources that pertained to the interests of the homeowners based on their survey data and organized that information into a matrix for future use. Her other task was designing an invitation template to invite homeowners to these future events.

The highlight of Mindy’s Michigan FPHLP experience was meeting all the faculty and her fellow cohort members! She will always remember the enriching conversations she had with the Michigan FPHLP staff and guest speakers. Although the experience was virtual, Mindy was able to build meaningful relationships with her fellow interns as well. Frequently, Mindy thinks back to the stressful moments that made her cohort closer, funny conversations they had, and the hard work that they all put into the program.

The greatest challenge Mindy faced as a participant was taking full advantage of the opportunities available to her. As a shy person, Mindy tends to stray away from office hour meetings or hold back during group discussions. However, many FPHLP faculty members emphasized that the program is what you put into it and that statement is very true! She learned that no one is going to advocate for you like you can and so it is crucial to put yourself out there despite how hard it might be.

After leaving FPHLP, Mindy plans to finish up her last year at USC and apply to MPH programs. She hopes to obtain her MPH with a concentration in community health or health behavior. With her MPH, Mindy hopes to work in program development and implementation in a global setting.

People should apply to Michigan FPHLP because it is an extremely rewarding experience. For 9 weeks, you get to fully immerse yourself into real public health work and learn from experienced leaders in the field. A huge bonus is being able to have the FPHLP faculty support you in your future endeavors. The knowledge and experience that they hold is priceless.