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Career Profile: Epidemiologist - Shannon Doocy

Career Profile: Epidemiologist - Shannon Doocy

Shannon Doocy, PhD, 27 Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, Baltimore MD Epidemiologist-International Health Specialist

In Demand: Careers in Health Care, Career Voyages, U.S. Dept. of Labor

Why did you choose to be an international health specialist?

When I was in high school, I spent a summer building houses and latrines and fighting public health problems in Costa Rica. The difference between life in rural Latin America and the United States made a big impression on me. I realized how much poverty there was in other countries. I felt that by choosing a career in international health, I would be able to help the most needy people in the world.

Are You Ready for a Career in Health Care?

1. We say “school,” you think:

Bring it on!
Eek! What will I wear on the first day?
My dog ate my homework.

What do you do on a typical day?

I spend almost half my time traveling in other countries. I work mainly with people who have been adversely affected by wars and disasters. I have worked in Indonesia conducting surveys of people affected by the tsunami, in Sudan looking at nutrition and death rates among semi-nomadic groups and in Liberia developing safe drinking water systems. When I am not traveling, I teach, write articles, and get ready for new projects.

What do you like best about your job?

Knowing that my work helps some of the poorest people in the world is very important to me. I also really enjoy traveling and working with people from all over the world. It’s a good reality check.

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