Public health professor gives back in the BEST way


Published: October 3, 2014

Ramphall_BEST_Scholars
Scholarship winners with BEST Center project colleagues: (front row, l to r) PhD candidate and BEST Scholars Fellow Saritha Bangara, Gunjanbhai Patel, Jay Mistry and (second row, l to r) Udoka Obinwa, Nayan Patel, Obiora Egbuche, and MPH Biostatistics student Olalekan Olanipekun

School of Public Health (SPH) adjunct assistant professor Lilly Ramphal-Naley, MD, MPH, has created a unique plan to assist international graduate students at UNT Health Science Center, by donating her teaching stipend back to the school for five new $1,000 scholarships through the SPH BEST Center.

The SPH BEST Center gives students an opportunity to work on public health projects for clients around the world, providing data analytics services for researchers, agencies, public health departments and other organizations.

Having worked with the SPH for 14 years, and most recently developing and teaching occupational and environmental health courses online, Dr. Ramphal-Naley said she continues to be inspired by her students.

“I like to tell them, we need your young minds to help find solutions to global issues like health care access, safe/healthy food and water, isolation of changing or emerging infectious diseases like TB, malaria, the Ebola crisis and more,” she said.

“These are some of the major public health issues that need attention. Data is critical, because without the data analysis, all you have is a problem, no solution. Hopefully, the big world projects and challenges that our students are taking on can be translated back into ways they can help their own native countries and our world in the future,” she said.

Selected as this year’s BEST Global Interprofessional Scholars are Obiora Egbuche (MPH, Biostatistics) and Udoka Obinwa (MPH, Epidemiology) from Nigeria; and Jay Mistry (MPH, Epidemiology), Gunjanbhai Patel (MPH, Epidemiology) and Nayan Patel (MPH, Epidemiology) from India.