From the Classroom to the Field


Christopher Floyd

2nd Year, MPH, Epidemiology Candidate

I was very excited to learn I was chosen to participate in the Grenada PHAST trip. Part of my motivation for applying to the University of Michigan was because of the plethora of opportunities for me to explore my interest in global health, and the PHAST trip to Grenada was one of those opportunities. One of the things that I am excited about is utilizing the skills that I gained in the classroom in the real world. Developing surveys, collecting and analyzing data, and giving presentations are things I want to put into practice to create meaningful change in Grenada. I am also very excited to learn more about Grenada and the Caribbean. This will be my very first time traveling to Grenada and I am excited to learn more about the people, food, culture, and the country’s history. I am especially excited to be traveling this time of year during the country's 50th anniversary of its independence from Britain. Lastly, I am also very enthusiastic about the project I will work on with my peers. I will work with the Grenada Red Cross to create a blood donation project. I look forward to learning more about the organization and providing guidelines on creating a blood donation program for Grenada. 

While I am very excited about traveling to Grenada, I have some apprehensions. Much of my experience focuses on quantitative aspects of public health. I am very good with numbers and coding. However, this project is primarily qualitative, entirely out of my element. I am not familiar with creating qualitative survey questions. I am also very nervous about conducting key informant interviews and focus groups as I have minimal experience speaking with stakeholders and community members. Despite my worries, I am fortunate to have a team familiar with qualitative research that I can lean on for support. While I don’t have much experience in qualitative projects, I am excited to learn and expand my expertise. 

I am very grateful for this opportunity and look forward to enhancing my skills, creating lifelong memories, and making a positive impact.