Be inspired by our alumni stories and imagine your own.
Rachel Brown ’15
Clinical Research Coordinator
PolicyLab, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Ursinus Major: Media & Communications
Advanced Degree: Master of Public Health (MPH) with a concentration in Community Health & Prevention, Drexel University
After graduating from Ursinus, I worked in two communications roles: first promoting economic and housing equality research at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia and then at a small communications firm serving exclusively academic, healthcare and nonprofit clients. Through both of these roles, I developed a deep appreciation for the power of translational research as a driver of meaningful policy change that yields real improvements in the lives of Philadelphia area families. These experiences, coupled with my liberal arts education from Ursinus that prepared me to feel comfortable in a range of professional fields, sparked my decision to go to graduate school to get my Master in Public Health degree from Drexel University, where I was an Urban Health Collaborative Research Fellow. After graduating I landed a Clinical Research Coordinator position with PolicyLab at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, a research center focused on achieving optimal child health and well-being by informing program and policy changes through interdisciplinary research. In this role, I manage a mixed-methods research portfolio aimed at reducing health disparities by addressing unmet social need among children and their families.
Julianne LaRosa ’19
Gene Therapy Group at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Ursinus Major: Health and Society
Advanced Degree- Master of Public Health (MPH), Thomas Jefferson University
Throughout undergrad at Ursinus, I worked closely with Dr. van de Ruit examining data on patient safety to determine potential causes of medical error in hospitals. This research, in conjunction with other public health-related classes at Ursinus, led me to pursue a Master of Public Health degree at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, PA. During my two years at Jefferson, I took classes on Project Management, Program Planning/Implementation, Qualitative Methods, Health Communication, Statistics, Epidemiology, and Policy and Advocacy. As a research assistant to Jefferson’s Program director, Dr. Rosie Frasso, I was involved in various public health-related research projects, including examining the impact of COVID-19 on student learning and well-being and exploring healthcare provider bias towards victims of sexual violence. My time at Ursinus and Jefferson solidified my interest in the field of public health and research as a whole. Prior to graduating from Jefferson, I accepted a position in the Clinical In Vivo Gene Therapy Group at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. The Clinical In Vivo Gene Therapy Group (CIGT) is dedicated to advancing gene therapy at CHOP. Through industry partnerships and investigator-initiated trials, our group seeks to further development of transformative human therapies.