Graduate Student Stories Transcripts: Yooni Choi
Transcript to Yooni Choi's video
I landed on Health Policy, because I thought it would be a wide enough sphere, where I could figure out, sort of, the more niche topics I wanted to work on, but at the same time, sort of, stay more general, in case I decided, maybe, there's something else that interests me.
A lot of students have different passions, but we all, kind of, meet in the middle in this program here, and you get to learn from everyone else. I'm super tight with my professors, and that's always been a plus for me.
And, it's really fun, because, since I know the area, we like, get to hang out in different restaurants, and different places that we wouldn't normally get to meet on campus. I mean, UMD buses here, run everywhere that you need to get here, and I have, in the past, had internships in D.C. If I wanted to meet up with friends in D.C., maybe just other parts of College Park, it's been really useful just to take public transportation.
I ended up working here, so I get tuition remission, but the state, and the cost of living here is also affordable for someone who might want to focus just on education.
I'm a project manager for an evaluation project. We're evaluating an intervention in another state, which means, we're sort of on the outskirts, and kind of, objectively assessing how that program is running. I think that's interesting, because it has to do with women's reproductive health, access, maternal and child health, all these different, sort of, niche things that I've been interested in since I was younger. I'm practicing skills that I've learned in my program, and at the same time, developing new ideas with professors on the side line to help me guide through all the difficulties that might come up with a research project.
Another project I've worked on in this summer is, a research project looking at health insurance in the state of California. We were just, kind of, seeing and assessing whether or not minorities were getting insurance after the Affordable Care Act in 2014.
My program has graduated students working on a rural health project that looked at different parts of Maryland that, otherwise, weren't getting, maybe, access to better care.
A lot of other students are also working in insurance and Medicaid.
I am part of the executive board on the Health Services Administration Student Association. Essentially, we're trying to get everyone together so that we can accomplish some public health service projects. So, something that we're trying to do in the fall, is get us trained to become health insurance navigators, so that we can help people who have confusion or are, unfamiliar with the health insurance policies. So, we'll get the signed up for insurance, hopefully, this fall. And then, just various other research and, like, volunteer opportunities on campus, we all team up to do together.
Really, the focus for me, is to make sure that any population of people that are being neglected or under served, who don't have access to care, I want to be there to kind of, help solve those problems, and maybe, make the access easier, come up with solutions that, maybe, have been worked on for many years, that I could be a part of, or maybe, create new solutions that haven't been looked at before.