Brown Undergraduate Journal of Public Health showcases student talent

The second edition of the Brown Undergraduate Journal of Public Health has arrived, featuring 14 articles that address a wide range of public health topics from a health equity perspective. This vibrant, student-run journal, founded by Grace Reed ’22, MPH’23 and Maddy Noh ’22, MPH’23, serves as a showcase for student scholarship, highlighting the hard work, professionalism, and rigorous research of its Brown undergraduate contributors.

The latest edition covers various compelling topics, including the diabetes epidemic in the Navajo Nation, the relationship between poor nutrition and chronic disease in incarcerated populations, the socioeconomic factors contributing to traffic-related deaths and injuries, and maternal mortality in Sierra Leone.

“These submissions are unified by a common objective of discussing inequities, and importantly, how we might work towards dissolving them,” said Katie Gu ’23 and Isabella Steidley ’23 MPH ’24, current co-editors-in-chief, and Meehir Dixit ’24, the journal’s managing editor, in a joint statement. “We believe that this diversity (existing beyond this publication) is a powerful tool in our push towards equity on multiple fronts of health care, and we’re proud that our student-run publication can be one small part of that.”

Patricia Risica, the director of undergraduate studies at the Brown School of Public Health and professor of behavioral and social sciences and epidemiology, expressed her pride in the students' commitment to building the journal. “Students participating in running this student-led, student-run journal gained experience in planning, organizing, troubleshooting, and succeeding in publishing an academic journal,” she said. “This is an enormous undertaking that demonstrates an amazing amount of leadership and perseverance.”     

Risica emphasized the importance of gaining experience communicating public health issues to a general audience. “The public health academy and student body have learned over the past few years the importance of communication,” she said. “These students have not only dedicated themselves to public health, but fully grasped the importance of communicating their own thoughts about public health and research findings to the public.”

“Public health and communication go hand-in-hand,” said Gu, Steidley and Dixit. “As students, learning how to better discuss and share public health knowledge is an invaluable skill, and being able to write or discuss a niche public health topic targeted to a broader audience makes us more effective health care workers. Public health communication promotes positive changes in behaviors by increasing community knowledge and advocacy. We are honored to be part of structures that are not only disseminating public health knowledge, but also fostering effective communication skills that anyone interested in a health career will need.

The Brown Undergraduate Journal of Public Health comprises a team of 26 members, including Otto Olafsson ’23, lead reviewer, Simran Singh ’23, outreach coordinator, Anusha Gupta ’25, campus liaison, Hamid Torabzadeh ’26, business administrator, and Punnava Alam ’25, design director.