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Health sciences graduate accepted into Yale public health program

Published on May 24, 2022

Health sciences graduate accepted into Yale public health program

Harley Webley '21
Harley Webley '21

Harley Webley ’21, a Health Sciences major with a concentration in Allied Health, will attend Yale University’s School of Public Health this fall. Webley, who also minored in sociology and healthcare management, maintained a 3.88 GPA; was named to the Dean’s List seven times; was a University Honors Scholar; and was a member of the Omicron Delta Leadership Society and the Phi Theta Delta Honors Society.

In 2019-20, under the guidance of her honors mentor Associate Professor Amy Bataille, Webley produced her honors thesis on “Subcellular Location of Multidrug Resistant Protein 4 and AMP-Activated Protein Kinase in Kidney Proximal Tubule Cells During Times of Cellular Stress,” which she presented at the National Conference for Undergraduate Research.

In 2020, she also conducted research on “Possible Barriers to Adequate Fruit and Vegetable Consumption Among Continuing College Students,” and “Haitian Women: Pillars of Haiti’s Informal Economy,” both of which she presented at Eastern’s Celebrating Research Excellence and Artistic Talent at Eastern (CREATE) conference.

Webley volunteered during the very early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic as a contact tracer for Connecticut’s Department of Public Health, where she learned the importance of bilingual contact tracing and language assistance programs as effective communication and outreach strategies in addressing hesitancy associated with COVID-19 testing. 

Webley also pursued an internship at a nonprofit in Hartford and used that experience to develop Eastern’s first-ever Minority Health Conference, with the support of the Arthur L. Johnson Unity Wing and Eastern’s Office of Equity and Diversity. The three-day event focused on the current state of health in Connecticut, with an emphasis on the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on communities that have been historically underrepresented and marginalized. Eastern presented her with its 2021 Social Justice Initiative Award for hosting the conference. 

“Social structures such as poverty and systemic racism have persistently exacerbated inequities in health, causing poorer health outcomes among communities of color and people with lower incomes,” said Webley. “At a glance, Connecticut is one of the healthiest states in the United States, but when you look at health disparities by race and ethnicity, they are stark and persistent.

"I believe that we must examine how our systems foster inequity and dismantle policies and practices that create disparate health outcomes. I am pursuing a Master's in Public Health to learn the appropriate tools and skillset to develop and apply approaches that center equity in health systems and policies.”  

Written by Dwight Bachman

Categories: Health Sciences, Alumni