PHD Global Public Health, Chinese Woman

October 12, 2014

I am a 23-year-old woman from China who will be finishing my MPH Degree at XXXX University this coming May of 2011. I have concentrated most of all in epidemiology but have also developed a profound interest in global health. I hope very much to be accepted to your world-renowned Program at XXX University and attain the PHD because I am convinced that this will enable me to make the greatest contribution possible to the field of epidemiology on a global scale.

 I am especially interested in doing research in the struggle against both AIDS and cancer. In particular, I keenly look forward to undertaking further advanced research in quantitative methods, generalized especially linear models and mixed-effects models, so as to become increasingly efficient at correlating data as it pertains to the study of chronic disease. I look forward to studying the vast range of statistical methods as they relate to complex sampling design and meta-analysis issues. My long term goal is to become an accomplished expert in the health sciences who is highly proficient at guiding teams of investigators in the field.

 I am a very dedicated and compassionate young woman who is most concerned with the wellness of societies, especially our most vulnerable groups. I have teaching and leadership experience and have completed an internship with the CDC that has proven to be invaluable since it has provided me with first-hand experience in this area.

 I am well trained at the Master’s level in methodology, biostatistics, and epidemiology and have received all ‘As’ in my biostatistics and epidemiology courses. I also have considerable laboratory experience in the biological sciences, having completing an undergraduate thesis on the subject of AIDS and subsequently a great deal of research on cancer. I am an accomplished proposal writer who was awarded a GFE scholarship and I am enormously found of designing questionnaires and surveys, conducting experiments, and gathering and analyzing data. As a Chinese woman, I am particularly interested in the numerous public health issues facing China and have studied them in depth. My Masters program at XXU in Global Epidemiology has proven to be especially beneficial to me in helping me to confirm my career directions and integrating my laboratory skills with what I have learned in the area of population based science.

 I was born and raised in a family of academics. Even very young, I often stayed late in the laboratory with my parents to do my homework and to play with rubber suction bulbs. I learned early on the value of working hard and dedicating oneself to science. In the summer of 2007, I joined a group of students that went deep into the countryside, conducting surveys and together we wrote a paper on the subject of the one child policy and it won the highest prize in a competition held by the National Population and Family Planning Commission of China.

 My undergraduate education in the Fundamental Sciences Program at Tsinghua University provided me not only with profound theoretical knowledge in biomedicine and biochemistry but also considerable laboratory research skills in the area of chronic diseases—neurodegenerative diseases, oxidation, microbicide and HIV/AIDS. In 2007, I took part in a genetics research project using Drosophila Melanogaster to screen potential rescued transgenes for Parkinsons and studied potentially useful drugs for treating Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s chorea, searching for microRNA that would respond to H2O2 treatments using high throughput sequencing technology. Other invaluable opportunities presented themselves the following year at the Yunnan University of Chinese Traditional Medicine, detecting microbicide candidates from Salvia Yunnanensis, walnut tea, through ELISA of HIV-1 reverse transcriptase inhibition. I believe strongly that my research experience will benefit me in interdisciplinary epidemiologic disease research.

 In 2008, XXXX University’s Comprehensive AIDS Research Center (CARC) began operation and I was able to collaborate with them for my final year, becoming the first student to complete my undergraduate thesis with the CARC. I adopted HIV backbone vector pNL4-3 to pack pseudovirus by co-transfecting them with pcDNA-ENV plasmid to 293T cells, utilizing ghost cell models of infection for titer-detection by luciferase assay. Within just two months, I obtained 38 HIV-1ENV pseudo-particles of high activity from Chinese virulent strains and made up the first draft of an optimized protocol for pseudovirus packaging which had the special feature of high transfection efficiency, also helping other researchers in the lab. My paper based on this research, Genetic and neutralization properties of diverse HIV-1 env clones from chronically infected patients in China, has just been submitted to Plos Pathogen. Most notably, I displayed the HIV envelope gene (CNE3-ENV) on yeast surface by conducting DNaseI random cleavage and reassembly. The successful construction of HIV-1 ENV library in a yeast surface display system helps us to realize a new, speeded-up strategy for designing vaccines, resulting in a novel way to recognize relationships between antibodies and epidemics.

 Most recently, I enjoyed a summer practicum (2010) with the Bureau of Education in a poor county, designing a questionnaire for high school students and leading a team that conducted surveys about mental health and health education, as well as performing statistical analysis using SAS 9.2. Our team then prepared an evidence-based strategy report along with other group members in order to assist in policy making. This experience inspired me to learn SUDDAN so as to properly adjust for weights and design effect in complex samples. During my first year at Emory, I worked part time for the Department of Ophthalmology and released an abstract for ARVO 2011. I am now working with Dr. XXXX, focusing on the utility of biomarkers (Mib1) so as to better predict the development of colorectal cancer. I hope to have the opportunity to continue my study of the descriptive epidemiology of cancer in your program and continue to develop my skills in statistical methods for correlated, longitudinal, clustered and multi-level data for cancer risk assessment and screening.

 I eventually want to return to China to work in the area of public health and hygiene. My home province, Yunnan, suffers even more from the ravages of disease than the general population. When I interned at the Yunnan Center for Disease Control (CDC), I got first-hand experience working with those who live with HIV/AIDS but know little to nothing about this disease. This was one of my first experiences in the joy of feeling really useful to those who need me most. Earning the PHD Degree in your highly esteemed program will provide me with the springboard that I need to become a world-class health professional and scientific investigator.

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