Application time!

Yesterday, I was absolutely thrilled when I stepped on the scale and saw 127.6 (126.6 after my run!) staring back at me.

This morning, not as good, 128.0 first thing and 127.2 after my run.

It serves me right, seeing as I had a great day barely eating on Sunday, and yesterday I did not do nearly as well.

Luckily, I can refocus today and make tomorrow even better. And on the upside, I ran more than three miles both yesterday and this morning (in the 45 degree rain!!).

In case you're interested... here is what I wrote for my application (I know it isn't related to most of what I post on this blog, but honestly, a little change from reading about weight-woes is nice every once-in-a-while right?)

Feel free to leave feedback! Merci mes amies... I hope everyone has a lovely, happy, strong and controlled day. Get your bodies moving and get those endorphins flowing - they're the best for warding off the blues that seem to affect so many of us!

Update: Application officially submitted!!!

Personal Statement
Public health workers have the novel opportunity to treat populations and to help close the gaps in healthcare that arise for a myriad of reasons. I see the need for such professionals, and feel intensely drawn to a discipline and a field that aim to improve the health of populations. As an undergraduate, I was inspired by the work of Dr. Paul Farmer as I pursued my BA in communication and pre-medicine, hoping to continue on to a master’s degree in communication and then to medical school. During my first year in graduate school, I took a course in epidemiology, which reinvigorated my studies and changed my vision for the future.
While studying epidemiology, I grew to understand the complex web of factors that contribute to the movement of diseases, and knew that this was the concentration to pursue. I became aware that the incidence and prevalence of diseases among a group of people is the result of much more than germs. Genetics, socio-economic status, race, ethnicity, and environment each contribute to the health of a population. Understanding the root causes of disease allows public health professionals to determine the best courses of action to treat, limit transmission, and ultimately prevent new cases. Most importantly, the practical nature of public health studies encouraged me to go beyond simply theorizing about the best plan of action, and consider the real-world factors and limitations that determine treatment, prevention, and educational solutions.
During my studies in San Diego State University’s graduate program for communication, I researched the multifaceted communication issues within healthcare. I recognize that clear, effective communication has significant influence on patient understanding and compliance, public acceptance of health protocol, and the working relationships between organizations, doctors, patients, and public health entities. In San Diego I also worked as a health educator for the CASBIRT research project, spending many hours screening emergency room patients for drug, alcohol, and tobacco use as well as providing education on these substances and brief interventions. Additionally, during my college summers and over the past six months, I have been working for a veterinary practice. Even as a receptionist, I advise clients about the diseases that may afflict their pets as well as methods for testing, treatment and prevention. Through these experiences, my interests deepened as I cultivated knowledge and improved the communication skills necessary to help educate individuals on public health issues, such as alcoholism and the importance of vaccinations.
Ultimately, I intend that my education in epidemiology, combined with my interdisciplinary background and interests will allow me forge a career in public health. My highest aspiration is to acquire the knowledge and skills to aid mothers and infants struggling with issues such as HIV/AIDS transmission. I believe that my personal qualities, strengths, and experiences will allow me to make a meaningful contribution to the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University.
Scholarship Addendum
For the duration of my studies at San Diego State University I had the privilege and responsibility to be a teaching associate for a freshman-level public speaking course. While I had no prior teaching experience or training, I quickly discovered that I was up to the task of instructing, encouraging, and challenging my students. During each semester, I demonstrated my leadership skills through teaching six courses per week, with a total of seventy-five students. My students not only improved their research and writing skills throughout the semesters, but also became more comfortable within my classroom environment and their peers, which led to advancements in delivery.
Last year, I had the unique opportunity to work for the San Diego State Research Foundation CASBIRT program. This experience allowed me to see first-hand some of the challenges faced by patients and healthcare practitioners that ultimately become public health concerns as well stretched my perspective on public health issues. Working for this program has reaffirmed that a career in public health is the right choice for me. I believe that I am a suitable candidate for Columbia’s scholarship program because of my strong leadership abilities and insatiable yearning to make a difference.
500 words for Post-Grad goals
After completing my MPH, I eventually envision myself working for a larger organization, either on a national or international spectrum. Though working in humanitarian aid is my eventual goal, I feel it is important to gain experience in epidemiology by way of a smaller organization, such as a county or state department of public health. I believe that focusing on the health of smaller, local populations is equally noble and important as compared with work in developing nations. Furthermore, smaller scale operations provide unique opportunities for decision-making and responsibility that may not arise in extremely large organizations. Such foundational experience and understanding of the basic tenets of public health practice are essential components of becoming a well-rounded practitioner, which is another one of my objectives. Thus, immediately following the completion of this degree, I picture myself working for a local government’s department of public health.
Ultimately, I would love to be involved with projects that are directed toward the prevention of disease transmission between mothers and infants. My initial interest in disease transmission took root while reading about humanitarian aid organizations like Médecins Sans Frontières and Partners in Health. Since that initial awareness, my interest deepened while my friend, Nathan, spent nearly two years volunteering in rural Uganda through World Harvest Mission. As Nathan shared his experiences, I learned about the struggles of access to medicines, patient awareness and compliance, and malnutrition that are tied to the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Hearing Nathan’s stories merely provided a taste of the greater problem facing the global population, and I wish to dedicate my life toward finding practical solutions.
While I am unsure of the specific path that will lead me toward my niche in public health, I know that an MPH is a crucial step. In the end, I am inspired to help others, and I think that a career of service in public health is the perfect outlet. Thus, I see my future education at the Mailman School of Public Health as a foundational element of achieving my goals.


Ariana said...

You run in really cold rain? Girl, you have determination! Now i have no excuse to skip out on working out just because I'm a little tired! You've mentioned that you're a post-grad- do you have your Master's yet or are you wanted to get your Ph.D.?

I thought your statement was very well written! You sound very educated and you're a great writer! I'm currently writing an essay for a final and I'm going to borrow some of your big words :D. I like to include vocabulary that I don't normally use in my formal writings so the professor knows I'm somewhat intelligent! (words like: multifaceted)That's what I love about blog writing- it's really informal and you're able to be yourself!

If they don't love your statement then there's something wrong with them! You've been really busy these past few years! <3

Bree said...

I'm completely astounded by your brilliance. It's rare that you find someone interested in both communications and public health, and I think you're a great candidate for Columbia. I did notice an extraneous comma in the second sentence of the first paragraph, but it overall looks solid. I certainly wish I can eventually be as learned as you are; you're a great role model. :)

bonesarepure said...

u ran in the craazy rain today it was raining bad here idk how close we are but damn i admire u if u ran in that crazy rain good job though

i skimmed over what uwrote and it sounds good to me

Erin Rose said...

very sound essay!!!!!! this is an APLUS paper as my english teacher would say.

I love the rain. but I am too damned clumsy to run in it, because lord knows i would trip and break my fat ass.

Alice D said...

oh my god, you're eloquent.
it was magnificent, dear. :)

Mich said...

Careful running in the cold rain! Wouldn't want to hear about you getting sick. ;)

The personal statement sounds great!


Cinnamon Brown said...

You went running in 7° C rain?! That's determination!

Your personal statement sounds very proffessional, you're gonna change the world, Sarah. I can't believe how accomplished and dedicated you are. The world needs more people like you. Keeping fingers crossed for you, Babe. XXX.


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