Joana Fernandez

Joana Fernandez, MPH/MSW

University of California, Irvine - Public Health, Epidemiology, Environmental Health Sciences
Community Health Sciences

What inspired you to study public health?

For a while I thought of my diverse interests as a negative; I thought that in order to pick a career, I needed more focus in one area. Then, I realized that having a lot of interests is a strength. The world is complicated and understanding problems from multiple angles is important. That is why I chose public health. To address issues that matter to me through interdisciplinary and culturally appropriate approaches.

What has been the single most rewarding experience of your career/studies so far?

The most rewarding experience about my studies so far has been interacting with professionals who believe in my potential and value the strengths that I have developed through my personal experiences.


Take care your mental health and exercise. Public health problems are difficult to solve, and staying healthy is very much needed for personal sustainability.

What do you think is the biggest challenge that the public health field should be focusing on?