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Rola Kojok and her time with the County of San Diego, Public Health Services

Rola is a rising senior with a major in Global Health and a minor in Middle Eastern Studies. She is local to San Diego, but is originally from Lebanon. She came to UCSD as a freshman with a pharmacological chemistry major but switched into the Global Health Program after taking GLBH 20 in Spring Quarter.

“I fell in love with the major and grew a passion for public/global health after taking some of the core upper-division classes and realizing that this path is meant for me.”


Rola spent 7 months volunteering with the County of San Diego, Public Health Services at the San Diego Public Health Services Complex. Public Health Services is dedicated to community wellness and health protection in San Diego County. Public Health Services works to prevent epidemics and the spread of disease, protect against environmental hazards, prevent injuries, promote and encourage healthy behaviors, respond to disasters and assist communities in recovery and assure the quality and accessibility of health services throughout the county.

Rola’s time with the County of San Diego, Public Health Services centered on data investigation in order to find the missing links in the overall picture of the LTBI intervention. This LTBI intervention was put in place in order to increase initiation, adherence and completion of the LTBI treatment among refugees coming into San Diego.

“I conducted chart reviews, accessed patient information databases in order to compile and analyze the missing data. I also conducted a literature review and assisted in drafting a preliminary version of the study that is in the process of being written and hopefully to be published in an academic journal. I worked with a public health nurse and a doctor in order to complete the tasks of the project.”

Rola’s field experience did present her with a few new challenges. She was unfamiliar with some of the database programs and more generally, how information was stored in the program. This made it initially difficult to navigate her way through the system.

“This was difficult but I was quick to learn how the programs functioned and by asking many questions, I adapted and overcame that challenge.”

Rola notes that she her field experience has allowed her to develop important connections and networks.

“But more importantly bonds that I have created with the people I worked with in my work environment. I will also take home the skills I learned from being put into an unfamiliar situation and learning to overcome the challenges and succeed in the process.”

In the little free time she had, Rola would explore other departments or programs within the building. This later led her to mee the individual who would later hire her for her current student worker position at the branch.

“My internship was focused on refugee health and I will begin my student worker position for the CDI or disease investigation project because of the connections I made there.”
“Everything I am currently learning or have been exposed to in my global health classes I saw implications and real life scenarios during my field experience. My entire major is giving me a basis for what is out there in the real world and as I continue my studies I am certain I will connect more and more back to my FE.”

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