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Biru Yang, PhD, MPH

Biru Yang, PhD, MPHYang graduated from the SBMI master’s in applied health program in August of 2013 and currently works for the Houston Department of Health and Human Services (HDHHS) as an epidemiologist supervisor. Yang oversees the electronic disease surveillance system called Maven. She is also responsible for reportable conditions including zoonotic diseases, vector borne diseases, respiratory diseases and Hepatitis B and C. Prior to earning her degree from SBMI, Yang was a biostatistician at HDHHS but credits the program with helping her earn a promotion to her current role.

Recently, Yang has been named a fellow for one of four prestigious fellowship programs sponsored by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) through Project SHINE: Strengthening Health Systems Through Interprofessional Education. The one year fellowship Yang will participate in is called Informatics Training-in-Place Program, or I-TIPP for short. This fellowship is for professionals already in the informatics field who oftentimes work in local or state health departments and want to further their professional skillset in the informatics industry. Yang is looking forward to her time in the I-TIPP fellowship program and said, “I plan to leverage every opportunity afforded to me during my time in the program. Efficiency is critical in this industry and I want to learn ways to use informatics in the most lucrative way so I can do my work as effectively as possible.”

SBMI faculty member Juliana Brixey, Ph.D., MPH, RN is one of Yang’s mentor for the course of her fellowship. Yang also credits Brixey with impacting her most during her master’s degree. “Dr. Brixey is very task-oriented and I truly appreciate how she makes her expectations very transparent, “noted Yang. “She played an integral role in helping me narrow down the scope of my projects as a SBMI student so I could get a more focused perspective.”

Yang has one important piece of advice for current students: take advantage of your student status. Yang states that “Students should capitalize on their student identity to approach others in the industry and ask key questions early on.”

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