Student Profile: Cameron Thomas

Cameron Thomas is a fourth-year undergraduate student majoring in health promotion who wants to improve health equity and service delivery for families and children.

Spring 2020

Bachelor of Science in Health Promotion and Behavior (BSHP), Health Promotion Emphasis

The Westminster Schools, Atlanta

Acworth, GA

What attracted you to a degree and/or certificate in public health? 
I was attracted to a degree in public health by the prospect of making macro, rather than micro-level changes in promoting health. I felt better served by an education focused on improving the health of communities rather than individuals, which led me to UGA’s College of Public Health, and more specifically, the Health Promotion major.

Why did you choose your particular concentration?
I chose the Health Promotion Emphasis for my degree concentration due to its flexibility in terms of program construction for coursework. It enabled me to take a variety of courses both within and outside of the College of Public Health, suited to my personal and career-related interests in health and health promotion.

What did you do for your internship?
This Spring I will be interning with Safe Kids Georgia, a nonprofit extension of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta focusing on childhood injury prevention. During the internship I will contribute to a variety of projects including grant writings, community needs assessments, and health communication strategies.

Do you have any volunteer experiences that were especially meaningful?
Growing up in a single parent household has largely shaped me into the person I am today. It has driven my passion to work towards positively impacting child development, particularly for those from similar disadvantaged circumstances. To that end, for the past two years and counting, I’ve had the opportunity to volunteer and work at Downtown Academy as a part of their After School Program staff. Every day from 3:30-5:00pm, we assist Academy students with homework and projects, as well as engage in outside sports and games to foster positive mentoring relationships. It has been an extremely rewarding experience that I am excited to be a part of every single afternoon.

What do you consider to be the highlight of your time at the College of Public Health?
The highlight of my time at the College of Public Health was creating my capstone portfolio. Engineering my own website that enables me to display and look back on all that I’ve accomplished within the CPH was an amazing experience. It has been extremely helpful when applying and interviewing for different positions and I will continue to update the site as I embark on my professional career.

What achievements/awards during your time here are you most proud of?
One of my major achievements in the CPH was the submission of a literature review I created on the long-term implications of child maltreatment to the Clarke County School District for their students experiencing homelessness program. I’m also proud of the several Presidential Scholar awards I’ve been able to receive. They represent the hard work and effort put into my coursework as I’ve been fortunate enough to be on track to graduate with Summa Cum Laude Honors from the program. However, I could not have done it alone, and owe it to teachers like Dr. Hein and Dr. Proctor for their support and motivation along the way.

What are your plans after graduation?
After graduation, I plan to attend graduate school to pursue an MPH degree. I am currently in the process of applying to schools and hope to land in a program where I can explore my interests in both family development and maternal & child health. My ultimate goals are to transform health equity and service delivery with skills I’ve developed through my academic background and professional work experience.

Posted on January 21, 2020.