Prestigious fellowship takes Stephenson ’15 to Zambia

Posted by Centre News in Alumni, News 18 Aug 2016

Emily Stephenson Portrait 2015.As part of its liberal arts vision, Centre College encourages students to cultivate a global outlook and a willingness to make a difference in the world. Emily Stephenson ’15 has lived out these values in her post-graduate pursuits, most recently being awarded a prestigious fellowship through the Center for Infectious Disease Research of Zambia (CIDRZ) HealthCorps.

“I was surprised and honored to be selected,” says Stephenson, who relocated to Lusaka, Zambia, in late July. “I am incredibly excited to have the opportunity to work with local and international specialists at the CIDRZ. It is a once in a lifetime chance that I could not pass up.”

The CIDRZ HealthCorps Fellowship is designed to provide field experience for public health, medical, nursing and management graduates who are interested in global health, and Stephenson will spend 11 months in the southern African nation working with a supervisor on a project in the area of qualitative social research. “I’m working with a team interested in many topics, including water and sanitation, and menstrual hygiene management,” says Stephenson. “I am really interested in both of these issues, so I am excited to get involved.”

During her time in Zambia, Stephenson is looking forward to immersing herself in a new culture and expanding her understanding of global health. “Living and working in the community, I hope to use the knowledge I have gained over the course of my masters, while also gaining new skills that will allow me to better serve communities in my future career,” she notes.

Stephenson’s move to Zambia came after a year spent in England as a Rotary Scholar at the University of Sheffield, and her work in Lusaka will build upon what she learned as a Centre student and in her post-graduate work in the UK.

“My time as a Rotary Scholar has been incredible,” says Stephenson, “and during my time at Centre, I was lucky enough to study abroad in Strasbourg, France, with Dr. Jeff Fieberg and to participate in a specimen collection trip to France and England with Dr. Marie Nydam for my independent research.

“After meeting students from around world and discussing our undergraduate experiences,” she continues, “I have become increasingly aware of just how special Centre College is.”

Stephenson concludes that, while she has now been an alumna for over a year, she still feels supported by the Centre community.

“Centre prepared me to be a global citizen, and I am forever grateful for the foundation that the College gave me for my future career.”

by Laurie Pierce
August 18, 2016

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