Illustration of a stage spotlight illuminating the words alumni spotlight.

Degrees and graduation years: BS in 2018 from UAB; MS in 2019 from Georgetown University

Current employer and job: United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Policy Analyst

Q: Why did you choose to study public health, and how did you decide on UAB's School of Public Health?

I started at UAB as a pre-med biology major with the intent of becoming a doctor working for an organization like Doctors Without Borders. I wasn’t enjoying the biology track so I began looking for a different major that gave me the opportunity to pursue health without some of the hard sciences. I heard about public health from a major fair in my sophomore year at UAB and learned about the global health concentration and jumped on it. It was the perfect combination of science, health, policy, and global health which is exactly what I was looking for in my academic career.

Q: What professional achievement has made you the most proud?

After I graduated from UAB, I had the privilege of pursuing a master’s degree at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. This was a major step in my career as I got to spend three months in sub-Saharan Africa doing HIV research on a USAID funded project. The research I did led to an increase in government funding for the project and landed me a job at USAID where I still work today!

Q: Where do you hope to go from here, or what are your future goals?

I have several ideas about where I might end up. One goal of mine is to spend more time in the field doing much more hands-on work. This might be through joining the USAID Foreign Service or through some other governmental or inter-governmental organization. Additionally, I would like to pursue a doctoral degree in public health so that I might get to hold a position advising a presidential administration on public health-related issues.

Are you an alumnus of our school and want to read more about Luke and other Alumni Spotlights? Visit the private UAB School of Public Health alumni group on LinkedIn and request to join.

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