College of Public Health students graduating

Our Students

Student Spotlight: Katie MacMillan

Photo of Katie MacMillanName: Katie MacMillan
Degree Program: Master of Public Health
Concentration: Health Behavior
Hometown: Bay City, MI
Previous Institutions: University of Michigan

What do you like most about the UK College of Public Health?
After being accepted to multiple Master of Public Health programs, I decide on the University of Kentucky because of the tightknit community within the school and the great interactions I had with faculty and staff. Basically, everyone here was very welcoming and seemed to look out for one another. The College has a great atmosphere where students can be productive and motivated, are able to form close relationships with faculty through courses or research opportunities, and have the opportunity to grow as young professionals.

Are you engaged in any research activities?
I am working with Dr. Tina Studts on a few projects related to early childhood behavioral health and related parenting practices.

What are you involved with on and off campus?
I have taught General Chemistry courses at UK since I started the program last fall. Within the College of Public Health, I am the campus liaison for the American Public Health Association, and serve as a Student Ambassador to help with recruitment and promotion of the College. Recently, I also took on the roll of Community Service Chair for the Student Public Health Association.

What do you hope to do when you graduate?
After graduation in May 2016, I hope to find a position where I can work to promote health through clinical-community connections. I find the connection of medical care and public health extremely important and am a firm believer that this will be a growing area of health careers in the near future.

What made you decide to study public health?
I have always been interested staying healthy through nutrition, exercise, etc. At a certain point in my undergraduate career, I came to the realization that being healthy or unhealthy is not always a choice. There are many barriers to healthy foods, safe places to exercise, access to healthcare, and so much more. I strive to help break down those barriers to allow all people the option of being healthy. Public health is a crucial aspect of our healthcare systems, policy work, and culture as a whole as it truly is keeping the people healthy. No matter where I end up in my career, I know I will always have the philosophies of public health in mind in every facet of my life.

What do you like to do in your spare time?
I love to create! I started my undergraduate career in art school and still love anything and everything in art! From crafting to painting to restoring furniture, I love to be creative!

What is one thing you would like people to know about you?
I don’t talk about it enough, but I have a huge passion for education. Education should be extremely important to anyone and everyone. From elementary school to college, and trade schools to universities, education or career training is a key component to a successful career. I have taught and tutored chemistry for over 5 years and have loved every second of it. While chemistry is a favorite topic of mine, what I really love the most about teaching is interacting with students, talking to them about their goals, and being more of a mentor than just an instructor. Each and every one of the students I work with is capable of doing great things in life, but I’ve interacted with many that don’t have role models to lead them down the right track. I love motivating people and giving them resources and advice to help them succeed in the future.