Kaiser program supports scholars dedicated to closing the health gap
“The Kaiser funding is allowing me to take a public health concern that came from my real-world experience and conduct research that will help address this concern.”
Launched in 2009, the Kaiser Permanente Public Health Scholars Program is an ambitious initiative designed to meet the increasing need for highly educated public health workers, particularly in underserved communities. It is funded by a $5 million grant from a fund established by Kaiser Permanente at the East Bay Community Foundation.
Katherine Schaff M.P.H. ’08 (pictured) received the Kaiser award for three years and will graduate from the doctoral public health program next year. Her work focuses on how foreclosures impact health, and how local health departments are getting engaged in this issue.
“I’m fortunate in that I’m already engaged in the type of work I would like to continue with after I graduate: working to eliminate health inequities through local policy work on social issues that affect health, like economics, housing, land use, and education,” she says.
The flexibility of the Kaiser funding is allowing Katherine, who came to Berkeley with many years in the public health sector, to “conduct research that will help address a public health concern that came from my real-world experience. It’s also preparing me to return to public health practice more able to address the issues that brought me to school.”