Ms. Ashley White, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Health Promotion, Education, and Behavior in the University of South Carolina Arnold School of Public Health, won the 2019 Outstanding Student Abstract Award from the South Carolina Institute of Medicine and Public Health. Ms. White received the award at the South Carolina Public Health Association’s annual conference in April and is the seventh consecutive Arnold School student to receive this honor.
Ms. White’s winning abstract represented a component of her dissertation, which examines how men understand their role in contraception, pregnancy and parenting by focusing on vasectomy, a permanent, male-centered contraceptive method. As a reproductive health researcher, Ms. White studies how social and cultural factors influence contraceptive use, both in the United States and around the world.
The Maryland native became interested in reproductive health while serving as a peer health educator as an undergraduate at Johns Hopkins University. After completing her bachelor’s degree in public health, Ms. White moved to Ireland where she earned a Master of Science in Public Health from Trinity College in Dublin. Her thesis examined young women’s experiences with unplanned pregnancy in the Cook Islands, deepening her interest in reproductive health.
“I love public health because you get an opportunity to think beyond the individual and consider how larger community, social, economic and political factors influence health and well-being,” Ms. White says. “I also love that public health work can be hands-on, where you get to work with populations and see research and practice come to fruition and have a lasting impact on people and communities.”Friday Letter Submission, Publish on July 12