Ms. Maggie Carson, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Environmental Health Sciences in the University of South Carolina Arnold School of Public Health, has won the President’s Award from the South Carolina Public Health Association (SCPHA). SCPHA is a statewide non-profit organization that works to advance the profession by serving public health professionals who seek to improve health at the population level.
Ms. Carson attended Presbyterian College for her undergraduate degree in psychology. It was after her 2014 graduation that she began to consider public health as a career path. Her father, Dr. James Carson, had spent nearly 20 years as a faculty member and chair in the Arnold School’s exercise science department, but his daughter was taken aback when she began to fully understand the depth and breadth of the field.
He connected Ms. Carson with associate dean for undergraduate student affairs Dr. Sara Corwin and clinical associate professor Dr. Kara Montgomery, who helped her choose a master’s program. Throughout her Master of Public Health in health promotion, education, and behavior (HPEB) program, Ms. Carson worked full time as the computer lab manager at a middle school in West Columbia.
She also became increasingly interested in the interaction between human health and the environment. Through one of her first master’s courses, an environmenal health sciences (ENHS) core class, she met ENHS chair and clinical professor Dr. Geoff Scott. As a doctoral student in the ENHS department, Ms. Carson is interested in how different contaminants can enter water and negatively impact human health through either drinking water contamination or recreational contact exposure, such as swimming and boating.Friday Letter Submission, Publish on July 26