Tate Atkinson, MPH

University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center Hudson College of Public Health
Health Administration and Policy

In one sentence, what is public health to you?

Moving towards equity in our communities health.

What inspired you to study public health?

My experience working in health care inspired me to pursue a Master of Public Health. When helping patients I was exposed to the public health issues, such as barriers to accessing care, food insecurity, and housing instability, which many Oklahoman’s struggle with. I wanted to learn how we can begin to resolve these issues from the top-down.

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

Working with Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy, I advocated for public health policy change. We advocated for many public health issues, and my most rewarding work was on vaccine regulation. Over a dozen anti-vaccine legislations were introduced last session. Working with other stakeholders we successfully defended our position and prevented rollbacks on major public health laws.


Take time to explore a variety of opportunities on campus and within your community. Public health touches on many issues and broadening your experience lets you learn which you are most passionate about.

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

Beginning to address the systemic social issues affecting many communities in the United States.