Jessica O’Neill, PhD ’21, MPH ’14, a recent doctoral degree recipient in community health and health behavior at SPHHP, has received a fellowship from the American Association for the Advancement of Science. She has been placed with the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Bureau of Humanitarian Assistance in Washington, D.C. The bureau provides lifesaving humanitarian assistance to the world’s most vulnerable and hardest-to-reach people.
O’Neill is among 284 highly trained scientists and engineers who will spend a year serving in federal agencies and congressional offices as Science & Technology Policy Fellows. The government benefits from the contributions of highly trained scientists and engineers, while they learn firsthand about federal policymaking and implementation.
“I get excited about the possibilities the future may hold when policies are rooted in sound scientific evidence and developed with the lenses of equity and environmental sustainability in mind,” O’Neill says.
“I thank my mentors Heather Orom (my primary research mentor) and Lorraine Collins for giving me the autonomy I wanted to explore the possibilities in my research, the guidance I needed to achieve success, and the support to pursue my interests in the nonprofit and policy sectors, which led to the AAAS Science and Technology policy fellowship. My years in CHHB were perhaps the most formative in my life, and I regard that time fondly, with much gratitude,” O’Neill adds.
Since AAAS’s fellowship program’s inception in 1973, nearly 4,000 fellows have supported the executive, judicial and legislative branches of the U.S. government.