Morgan verticalMorgan Rozek

BS in Public Health, concentration in Global Health

Minors in Chemistry & Human Services

Class of 2020

Coming to Global Health

When Morgan started as a freshman at UAB, she expected to go into lab science and even has a chemistry minor to prove it. As a sophomore, she took PUH 202: Introduction to Global Health and that class won her over to public health. Morgan had been going back and forth between science & education, but in public health she found a way to combine the two.

From there, her passion for global health grew within and outside the UAB community: “Once I found public health, I thought how can I explore this? Because public health is so broad, I wanted to be more involved and to develop specific skills I would need for different areas.”

Getting involved

First Morgan became involved in the Global Health Interest Group (GHIG), which she is now president of. During her time at UAB she’s also participated in two social work study abroad courses that looked at community health in the Maasai Mara community of Kenya, and she’s participated (and placed) in various Global Health Case Competitions.

The Sparkman Fellows program stands out as something Morgan looked forward to participating in and has been her favorite part of the Sparkman Center. Morgan was paired with Dr. Grace Jepkemboi, associate professor in the School of Education.  Under Dr. Jepkemboi’s mentorship, Morgan attended a qualitative analysis training and then worked on a project about barriers to disclosure for adolescents living with HIV in Jamaica.

This semester Morgan’s been working on the IRB application for another project, which is a double process for international projects. It may not sound like the most gripping work to some, but Morgan has enjoyed learning about the whole process. As she said – “you have to learn to find journals and sources and you have to learn to do IRB. It’s all a part of the research process.”

2019 Statewide GHCC 1st place

Next step? Peace Corps!

Recently Morgan was accepted for a primary education position with the Peace Corps Eastern Caribbean. The Peace Corps had always been something she knew about but the opportunity seemed even more relevant after her international experiences and public health education. The study abroad courses to Kenya solidified her “desire to do field work and work closely with the community I’m trying to make a change in” while also reinforcing “the collaboration that is required to be able to make sustainable change.”

Morgan will be leaving this summer to start the 3-month long pre-service training that kicks off Peace Corps service. Part-way through training she’ll learn whether she’ll serve in Dominica, Grenada, St. Lucia, or St. Vincent and the Grenadines for the following two years. She’s looking forward to the training in education, along with the opportunity to do secondary projects based in her global health interests.

Advice for students

When asked what advice she would give to students looking to get involved with global health, Morgan said “There are a ton of opportunities out there and they may not seem obvious, but if you look for them – they’re there. Even if it’s not going abroad, the opportunities are there.” It might mean taking a class in another department or stepping out of your comfort zone to get involved with a new group.

The only thing Morgan wishes she had done was the SIFAT Field Training course. She was able to go on a day-trip organized by the Sparkman Center, which peaked her interest in the hands-on activities and skills, but would definitely do the two-week May class if she had the chance.

"Because public health is so broad the best way to learn more about it and what you’re passionate about is to get involved and reach out to professors or centers like the Sparkman Center and see what they’re doing. That can really shine a light on what you want do with your future."

-Morgan


Thanks for sharing with us Morgan! We'll make sure to share updates from Morgan as she shares them from her next adventure in the Eastern Caribbean.

If you want to learn more about...