Shilpa Vimalananda

shilpa vimalanandaAge: 31
Hometown:  Baltimore, MD
Education: BS in Biology and Community Health, Tufts University, MPH in Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Tufts University School of Medicine
Placement: Society for Education, Action, and Research in Community (SEARCH), Maharashtra
Specific Field Interests:  Nutrition, Maternal and Child Health, Health Promotion and Disease Prevention
Area of Focus: Public Health

Highlights:  While completing her Master’ s degree in Public Health at Tufts University School of Medicine, Shilpa honed her strong interest in Nutrition and Health Promotion.  She worked with the AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts Bay, providing healthful food and counseling people living with AIDS/HIV about how to achieve optimal nutrition while living with their disease.  She also conducted a study examining barriers to achieving that goal within the population served.  Her commitment to Public Health work and a new focus on these same issues in the maternal and child population was cemented during subsequent projects, where she visited elementary schools in Chennai, India with a pediatrician to learn about the status of rural child healthcare, its benefits, and the limitations faced by the local physician and Public Health workers in the area.  There she completed an informal study examining the nutrition status and school performance of girl versus the boy children in rural Chennai.  She later returned to India, where she continued to focus on child health and nutrition by teaching English to preschool children as well as running health education sessions with local women in Dharamsala.  Topics included affordable nutrition supplements for children, hygiene and its connection to infectious disease, and many issues related specifically to women’s healthcare.Shilpa enjoys reading, sports, and travelling as much as she can.