Public Health Alumna Begins EPA Fellowship

Brie Reed MPH CEHS 2018 
 Brie Reed, MPH, CEHS Class of 2018

On May 1st, Brie Reed, MPH, CEHS Class of 2018, embarked on a year-long fellowship within the Office of Research and Development (ORD) at the US EPA headquarters in Washington, DC. Working as an Association of Schools and Programs of Public Health/EPA Environmental Health Fellow hosted by the Office of Science Policy (OSP), Ms. Reed will be contributing to projects associated with providing science that informs EPA decision-making regarding the safeguarding of human health and ecosystems from environmental pollutants.   

What projects will you be working on throughout your fellowship?

One of the projects I will be working on is the development of a meeting with some public health partners of the EPA. The idea behind this meeting is to work across disciplines (with the physician community) to identify some mutual areas of interests on environmental health issues. For most physicians, environmental health is not included in their training, so determining how the research done by ORD can be best provided to the physician community. One area that has already been identified as a mutual concern is the link between smoke exposure from wildfires and heart disease risk. 

Another project consists of analyzing research (already completed by ORD) and identifying how this research has helped address communities' environmental justice concerns and disseminating these findings in the form of a report.

Why are you working to protect the environment?

Personally, what drives me to work towards protecting the environment is social justice.  Those who are affected the most by environmental pollutants and violations of environmental justice are vulnerable populations such as children, elderly, minorities, and the poor. Unequal environmental conditions are what help perpetuate health disparities, so any form of work I can do to help provide tools/information to mitigate and prevent these disparities is what I am dedicated to. 

What work did you do for your capstone project while at TUC? 

For my capstone I compiled a set of best practices for addressing commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC) on a county-level. CSEC is any type of sexual activity involving child in exchange for something of value or promise thereof. This entailed conducting interviews with individuals working with or on behalf of CSEC victims in Alameda County, where there is a high prevalence of commercial sexual exploitation. I identified what stakeholders in Alameda county found to be most successful about their approach and compiled this information into recommendations. This set of best practices highlights the inner workings of a county that is combatting CSEC successfully and can serve as a guide for other counties looking to strengthen their response.

Learn more about ORD here

And find out more about ASPPH Fellowships like Ms. Reed's here