Ben Anderson received his Master of Public Health (MPH) in 2012, and later his PhD in Public Health, One Health concentration in 2015, from the University of Florida Department of Environmental and Global Health.
When Ben first joined the department in 2010, he had an interest in medical entomology, specifically vector-borne disease research, and hopes of gaining laboratory training. He planned to pursue a medical degree after completing his master’s, however, his experience volunteering in the Global Pathogens Laboratory and mentorship from Dr. Greg Gray, former chair and professor at EGH, transformed his academic path. Ben applied and was accepted into the first cohort of students in the PhD in Public Health, One Health concentration. He says, “I was convinced that the One Health approach was, and still is, necessary to address complex global health threats of today, and the future.”
During his PhD program, Ben considered many career options after graduation but had an interest specifically in academia. At the time, he struggled with the confidence to pursue a career in academia due to its competitive nature. “As I progressed through my PhD training and continued to practice research and teaching skills, I became more confident in my ability to contribute to the scientific community,” he says.
His education and personal growth proved to be useful because Ben went on to become a One Health Research and Laboratory Manager and Postdoctoral Associate at Duke University in the Duke Global Health Institute after completing his PhD. In his first year as a postdoctoral associate, he was awarded his first small grant and his career in academia was solidified.
Ben is now an Assistant Professor of Natural Science and Global Health at Duke Kunshan University, Jiangsu, Kunshan, China. He found his passion working with his students and scholars and enjoys the freedom he has to pursue academic interests, wherever they lead. Reflecting on his time with the EGH Department, Anderson says that the collaborative spirit of the faculty, staff, and students and the diversity of the faculty, both in their backgrounds and research, were great support during his degree programs.
Congratulations to our alumnus Ben Anderson on achieving his goals! Learn more about what you can gain from an MPH in Environmental Health or PhD in Public Health, One Health concentration here.