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Students and Alumni Celebrate the Dornsife School of Public Health During Drexel’s Day of Giving

May 25, 2017

On May 24, 71 Dornsife students, faculty, staff and alumni contributed during the second annual Drexel Day of Giving event. More than $9,000 in donations was directed to the Dornsife School of Public Health, the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute and the EAT Café.

This year, 3,707 donors collectively raised $824,534 to be directed to over 80 Drexel areas. Last year’s campaign raised $713,514 for all Drexel programs, from 2,887 supporters.

We asked Dornsife students and alumni to explain what aspect of the Drexel experience has had the greatest impact on them, to share during this year’s 24 Hours of Impact event.

Manasvi Shah, MPH ’17
The diverse learning experience is defining for me. I thought that I was inclined toward infectious diseases, but now I am not as narrow in my thinking. I can see every aspect of life, medicine and health principles, and think about it in different ways.

I had a range of experiences offered to me outside of my major, Epidemiology. I’m branching out, without limits. I didn’t learn just in the classroom. With practical experiences, you are learning in real time and gaining real life experience, not just theory.

I feel empowered. I feel confident. No matter what job I get, I can apply the skills I learned to the next job.

Sana Imam, MPH ‘17
I like how our school is on every floor. You sit in the building and run into people - students, professors - and engage with people outside of your realm. See your professor outside of class. Get to know staff. Someone’s role doesn’t define who they are. Anyone can provide you some perspective that can be beneficial. Everyone in this building has something to offer if you are willing to find it.

I will remember the professors, the wealth of experience they brought into the classroom. Professors here prioritize the incorporation of professional culture into academics. I took three classes with Mary Duden, and in her classes, she counters each lesson with a real-world example. You know that you can apply what you learn, which makes the learning process more engaging.

Anup Abraham, MPH ‘17
I came into Dornsife School of Public Health with an open mind, but expected to do my work and leave. But the Dornsife experience led to so many different opportunities. I had the opportunity to be a part of the Student Government Organization, be a part of the inaugural class of FiRE Fellows, connect with various teachers for projects, and even be a teaching assistant. What you put into an experience is what you will really will get out of it.

Now I truly have found my passion for using data to help solve problems and help with people's lives.  

Lan VanDe Hei, BS Public Health ‘17
Being in the Dornsife School of Public Health has strengthened my passion for health equity and making a difference. I've learned a holistic approach to addressing and thinking critically about issues within the field of public health. I have gained a diverse knowledge of the five core disciplines.

Nneoma Njoku, BS Public Health ‘17
When I came to Drexel, I was a transfer student who had already switched majors twice. I was growing increasingly frustrated at my inability to find my niche. As I prepare to graduate, for the first time in my life I am confident in the direction I am headed in and I finally feel that I am where I was meant to end up. Sometimes trial and error isn’t so bad!

The Dornsife School of Public Health is an inspiring place to learn. Everyone - from my fellow undergrads, to the graduate students, and the amazing faculty - is very dedicated to the field. When you are constantly surrounded by positive attitudes and passion, it is easy for some of that spirit to rub off on you.

Stanley Ng, MPH ‘12
The diverse and comprehensive curriculum of the MPH program at Dornsife made me much more open-minded. I learned to identify and value opportunities. I have acquired a way of thinking that is critical yet creative. My experiences and takeaways from Dornsife have made, and will continue to make, positive impacts in both my professional and personal life for years to come.  

Lauren Finn, MPH ‘13
My time at Dornsife really underlined the importance of being engaged with my own community, and understanding the social and economic determinants of health. I've learned that great public health work requires both creativity and perseverance.

The lesson I will still remember years down the line is that public health problems are multi-faceted, and that true solutions have to take into account complex factors such as social and economic inequality and built environment.