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Public health students learn about advocacy on Capitol Hill

Five Master of Public Health students and their professor, Pamela Mukaire, met with U.S. Rep. Jody Hice (R-Ga.) on Saturday, Oct. 24

Five students from Liberty University’s Master of Public Health (M.P.H.) program visited Washington, D.C., to discuss the issues of maternal and child health care, as well as family planning, from a Christian perspective on Saturday, Oct. 24.

The trip, hosted by Christian Connections for International Health (CCIH), was designed to give students the opportunity to meet with elected officials and discuss health issues pertaining to population health.

Liberty students met with Sens. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) and Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), as well as Reps. Jody Hice (R-Ga.) and Mark Walker (R-N.C.).

Megan May, an M.P.H. student specializing in health promotion, said that she decided to participate for the opportunity to meet with prominent leaders in the U.S. and learn how to advocate for issues that she is passionate about.

“I want to be an advocate further down the road in my career, and this was a good chance to see what it (would be) like,” she said. “Maternal and child health are important issues that most people do not (fully) understand. In developing countries, maternal and child deaths are one of the leading causes of death because of lack of access to family planning.”

Diane Tsra, an M.P.H. student specializing in global health, added that some of the legislators were not aware of the scale of these issues.

“We were received well by the congressmen and the staff of the senators,” she said. “They were engaging and wanted to learn about what we had to say. I am thankful we had the opportunity to educate and possibly make a difference in the world.”