On Thursday, November 19th, students from the Department of Public Health in the College of Health and Human Services and the WKU Student Chapter of the Kentucky Public Health Association helped the campus community see “the bigger picture” of public health on a global scale as part of International Education Week (#thebiggerpicturewku). Utilizing the diversity within the Department of Public Health, students from multiple countries and disciplines shared their culture and perspectives regarding some of the leading public health concerns in their home countries. Booths highlighting such countries as Nigeria, India, Bangladesh, and Pakistan featured student research, international snacks, clothing, artifacts and music from each country. Representatives from the Barren River District Health Department also hosted a booth featuring information about the health issues common to Bowling Green and the international population in the United States.
Each country was led by designated country representatives who managed international student volunteers from both the department of public health and from other departments across WKU. The country representatives are as follows: Umar Kabir, Nigeria, MPH student; Ikbal Parveg, Bangladesh, MS-EOHS student; Nadia Kahn, Bangladesh, MHA Student; Sravana Vellaturi, India, MS-EOHS student ; Rama Lanke, MS-EOHS student, India; Sumra Kanwal, Pakistan, MPH Student; Tayyaba Iram, Pakistan, MPH Student; and Shamaila Sadagat, Pakistan, MPH Student.
Jessica Stallings, KPHA Vice President, and Leslie Ford, KPHA Secretary, served as the committee chairs who planned and organized the event with support from Department of Public Health faculty and staff. Stallings stated that the purpose of this event was to give students forum through which they can share their unique voice and perspective with the rest of the WKU community. “This will encourage intercultural dialogue between the international students and the domestic students while expanding all students’ understanding of the field of public health.”
Ford described her experience as very rewarding. “This event was the first of its kind for the public health department and focused on highlighting the international students, their culture, and public health in their countries,” said Ford. “A lot of hard work and dedication was put in by students from multiple disciplines, and together we were able to create an event that highlighted everyone. “
The Kentucky Public Health Association works to promote and create awareness of public health issues both on campus and in our community and new members are always welcome. For more information about KPHA, contact Rachell Bailey, KPHA President, at firstname.lastname@example.org or find us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/WKUKPHA/ .
Contact: Zona Ascensio, MPH student and KPHA Historian (email@example.com)