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Vinson Fellow to explore public health impacts in coastal Georgia

February 22, 2018 | Students

By Adita Krishnaswamy

Adita Krishnaswamy

Vinson Fellow to explore public health impacts in coastal Georgia

I am a sophomore studying statistics and mathematics, with interests in public policy and public health. With so many problems in this world, I believe that data is one of the most powerful weapons available to effect real change in the world. I want to dedicate my life to serving vulnerable populations by working at the intersection of public policy and data.

My policy interests center around public health, specifically improving health outcomes for vulnerable populations. I am passionate in my belief that health is a human right. All humans are affected by health, and I hope to find ways to help the millions of people who do not have access to proper health care and those who face higher health risks as a result. I hope to understand how our surroundings can so profoundly affect our health outcomes.

With hopes of working in health policy in the future, it is crucial that I strengthen my understanding of the health policy landscape and the successes and failures of the current healthcare system in the United States. This semester, I’ll be working with faculty mentor Scott Pippin to explore the public health impact of wastewater management systems in coastal Georgia. Using machine learning, I hope get a better understanding of the relationship between failing wastewater management systems and the socioeconomic and demographic characteristics of populations.

I applied to the Vinson Institute Fellows Program following a conversation with the director of the UGA Honors Program, David Williams. Dr. Williams suggested I learn more about the Institute of Government because it might provide an avenue to conduct a research project that incorporates public policy and statistics—two areas that are of great academic interest to me. In particular, I was drawn to the Institute of Government because of its reputation for excellence in data-driven policy research and development.

I am grateful for this opportunity to work in the Institute of Government and learn more about health and environmental policy while developing meaningful relationships with the faculty and staff at the Institute.


Aditya Krishnaswamy is a sophomore Foundation Fellow from Marietta majoring in statistics and mathematics, with a minor in public health. He is the vice president of the UGA Science Olympiad Outreach and assistant policy adviser for the Roosevelt Institute’s UGA chapter. He has conducted research with the Odum School of Ecology and the College of Public Health, studied at Oxford University in Great Britain and held an internship in Chennai, India.