Jacqueline Bell earns her Master of Public Health with a concentration in health services and policy.
Why did you choose to pursue your degree?
I knew my purpose revolved around serving diverse communities, and the best way to create the largest impact within the health care system would be to shift my focus towards understanding and implementing policy initiatives addressing issues such as social determinants of health and health equity.
What has been your biggest accomplishment during your studies?
One of my biggest accomplishments was conducting my own policy research on the effects of increasing Excise Taxes on Tobacco Products in Indonesia and having the opportunity to present at the 2nd International Symposium on Tobacco Control & Non Communicable Disease Prevention.
What’s an important lesson you learned?
I’ve learned and developed a new appreciation for how different and complex health systems can be, not just in the United States, but internationally as well. It is also interesting how universal health coverage, single payer systems, and socialized medicine are often used interchangeably but are not the same thing.
What’s one of your favorite memories from your program?
By far, my best memory would have to be studying abroad in Switzerland and having the opportunity to attend the 71st World Health Assembly. It truly was an honor to attend and a trip I still rave about today.
What will you miss most and why?
Sending my classmates memes/gifs when I don’t understand something and all of us laughing because we all feel the same way. *Cue Michael Jackson’s “You are not alone”*
What are you doing after you graduate?
I plan to continue working at my current company, analyzing legislation and regulations that can potentially impact the insurance industry and effect health equity and quality of care for consumers.
What do you look forward to in your career path?
Being able to use what I have learned in this MPH program, pursue a legal career, and leave an impact on diverse communities by implementing or amending legislation impacting the health care system.
What advice do you have for future grads?
There are no boundaries to success and just when you believe there is, understand that you yourself have created those limitations on your own. Allow yourself to grow to your fullest potential by living a life that pushes you past your feelings of uncertainty and eliminates your ability to underestimate yourself.