#WeAreEmoryEPI: Meet Chenmua Yang

#WeAreEmoryEPI: Meet Chenmua Yang

Category : #WeAreEmoryEPI

Meet Chenmua Yang! Chenmua is a second-year Global Epidemiology MPH candidate. He has research interests in global infectious disease epidemiology, improving vaccine equity and access, and promoting preventative health practices among displaced populations (refugees, immigrants, and migrants). In this feature, get to know more about Chenmua, his experience at Rollins, and his advice for first-year students!



Tell us a little bit about your academic history/where you went to school.

I went to the University of Wisconsin-Madison and completed my B.S. in Microbiology and a certificate in European Studies. I also had the opportunity to study abroad in Barcelona, Spain for a semester.


Are there any exciting projects that you are currently working on that you’d like to share with us?

I recently wrapped up a project working with the Clarkston Community Health Center and the Refugee Women’s Network where I had the opportunity to lead a project to better understand how we can increase COVID-19 vaccine confidence among the refugee and immigrant communities residing in Clarkson, GA. The second is with my REAL position -the Vaccine Exemplars Project– led by Drs Matthew Freeman and Robert Bednarczyk to identify ‘why’ and ‘how’ exemplar countries achieved significant and improved vaccination coverage.


When applying, what were you looking for in a public health school, and what factors drove you towards Rollins? 

I was looking for a school that was committed to their students inside and outside of the classroom. I also chose Rollins because I got in touch with past MPH graduates who advocated to me how RSPH truly supports their students from varying life experiences and backgrounds.


Do you have any tips for prospective public health students? 

Reach out and ask questions to as many people as you can regarding the public health areas that you are interested in. Everyone here is very supportive and we want to help you as much as we can!


What is your favorite part about earning your MPH at Emory?

My classmates, as well as the staff and faculty members at Rollins are my favorite parts about Emory. Also, being an EPI 530 TA for my lab students is another experience that I’ve deeply enjoyed during my MPH.


What is your favorite class you have taken so far at Emory and why?

My favorite class is probably Introduction to GIS (INFO 530) because it’s not a required class that GLEPI/EPI students take, but it has a lot of real-world applicability and interesting concepts. Vaccine & Vaccine Preventable Diseases (GH571) is a close second and a course that I recommend to students who are interested in learning more about vaccines.


What advice do you have for 1st year MPH Students? 

It can feel like you have a lot of pressure to have everything planned out during your first semester, but it’s good to know you don’t have to. Somehow and someway, everything will work out.


How have you been spending your free time?

During my free time I like to cook and go running – although it is quite hilly in Atlanta. I also like to travel (pre-pandemic) and planning out my future travels has been a great way to de-stress. The itinerary is nothing too serious, but it’s a good way for me to decide where I want to go next.


If you currently live in Atlanta, what is one place that you would recommend people to visit?

The Freedom Park trail and everything else around that area is a nice way to spend a day outside.


What are three fun facts that you want people to know about you?
  1. I am Hmong-American like Sunisa (Suni) Lee.
  2. I am enjoy watching and listening to musicals.
  3. I love eating spicy food- especially green papaya salad with mango sticky rice.



Thanks for talking with us, Chenmua! Tune in next week for another feature of #WeAreEmoryEPI.

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