The LAGHC 2016 planning team consists of students and staff from UCLA, USC, and Charles Drew University. The team members and their biographies are listed below. The LAGHC 2017 planning team has been already selected.


Anthony Bui
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Anthony is a first year medical student at DGSOM at UCLA interested in health systems reform, social determinants of health, and primary care. Prior to UCLA, Anthony spent 5 years working in global health and international development. As a research fellow for the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), he was supported by the Gates Foundation to analyze global and domestic healthcare spending and financing. Before IHME, he was a strategy consultant with the Monitor Group (now Monitor Deloitte) in New York City, serving healthcare and government clients on corporate strategy and economic development cases. He has advised and collaborated with corporations, government agencies, and NGOs on population health and development projects in the U.S., Uganda, Kenya, Zambia, India, Vietnam, and Mexico. A former board member of the Uganda Village Project, Anthony holds a BA in Economics and Public Health from UC Berkeley and a MPH in Global Health Metrics from the University of Washington.

Kara Faktor
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Kara is a first year medical student at David Geffen School of Medicine with an interest in community-centered healthcare, and development of sustainable global partnerships. Before UCLA, she spent a year pursuing public health research in Honduras through the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. During her undergraduate career, she established a chapter of Global Medical Brigades at Brandeis University, and led three weeklong medical brigades to rural Honduran communities. Prior to her work in Latin America, Kara interned at the Center for Neuropsychology Evaluation and Treatment in Madrid, Spain, where she assisted in developing workshops to help children with ADHD in improving executive functions. Kara holds a BS in Neuroscience, Biology, and Spanish from Brandeis University. 

Ogechukwu (Agatha) Offorjebe (Advisor to Co-Directors)
Medical Student at the Charles R. Drew University and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
A second year medical student at Charles R. Drew University and David Geffen School of Medicine, Agatha has demonstrated a commitment to health system strengthening and delivery of primary care services to the underserved. As a Medical Coordinator for the Mobile Clinic Project at UCLA, she runs a weekly street-side clinic providing medical evaluation and appropriate community referrals to homeless clients in the West Hollywood area. Prior to UCLA, Agatha spent 5 years working in public health, education, and international development. As a Princeton in Africa Fellow at the Botswana-Baylor Children’s Clinic she developed life skills curricula and tool kits for the provision of care of HIV-positive adolescents in Botswana and throughout the Baylor Pediatric AIDS Initiative Network. A UCLA Global Health Pathway student, Agatha holds an AB in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology from Princeton University.

Logistics Co-Chairs

Corinne Jansen
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Corinne is a second year medical student at the David Geffen School of Medicine with a focus on increasing healthcare access and medical education. As the Supplies Chief for the Student Run Homeless Clinic, she oversees the clinical supplies and medications for the biweekly clinics and serves as a Chief at clinics in both West LA and DTLA Skid Row. She is also the co-coordinator the Women in Surgery Interest Group, an Anatomy Teaching Assistant, and a Medical Spanish Proctor. Before medical school, Corinne worked for Planned Parenthood as a medical assistant in reproductive healthcare and completed a community development internship in rural northern Nicaragua through an NGO, Waves of Hope. While earning her BA in Biological Chemistry at UC Berkeley, she founded and created the curriculum for a Medical Spanish course and worked at a free clinic as an interpreter and triage nurse. 

Patricia Mathelier (Advisor to Logistics Co-Chairs)
Medical Student at the Charles R. Drew University and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Patricia is a second year medical student at Charles R. Drew University and David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. She is interested in social determinants of health and working with underserved populations both domestically and abroad. Prior to starting medical school, Patricia worked with Boston-based NGOs including Children of the Border and Physicians for Haiti (now EqualHealth). She has worked as a French & Creole translator and helped design the Physicians for Haiti social medicine curriculum for a summer course designed for Haitian and American medical students that takes place annually in Haiti. With support from the Center for World Health and the Short Term Training Program at UCLA, Patricia has been working on an infectious disease study in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Patricia holds an AB in Psychology with a specialization in Social and Cognitive Neuroscience from Harvard University.

Betty Nguyen
Undergraduate Student at UCLA Department of Biology
Betty is a third year undergraduate at UCLA studying Biology and Global Health. Prior to her work with LAGHC, Betty has served as President of the UCLA Residential Life On Campus Housing Council, where she led a team of 24 students to plan programs for over 11,000 students living in residential halls. Betty has also interned for UCLA Health and UCLA Mobile Clinic Project, where she worked with the vulnerable populations of West Hollywood to collect clients’ social histories and helped provide referrals and medication. Betty is a Gates Millennium Scholar and hopes to work with underserved communities in the capacity of an MD/MPH dual degree.

Pooja Parameshwar
Undergraduate Student at UCLA Department of Psychology
Pooja is a fourth year UCLA undergraduate student studying Psychobiology with a minor in French. Prior to LAGHC, Pooja has gained both international and local experience working to bridge health disparities through community-based approaches. As the Director of Domestic Relations for the Fellowship for International Service and Health at UCLA, a student-run non-profit organization that provides regular basic medical service to underserved populations in Mexico, Pooja has led several international trips. Pooja is also involved with Medicine for Humanity, a non-profit organization providing surgical care to women with fistula, where she just recently spent time in Uganda. At UCLA, Pooja works with the UCLA Center for World Health, where she currently helps conduct educational research. In addition, Pooja is a volunteer Clinic Assistant at Venice Family Clinic, a role that has fueled her desire to work with underserved populations in Los Angeles. Lastly, Pooja is passionate about research, and works in a lab at UCLA which studies breast cancer. After graduation, Pooja plans to apply to medical school, where she aspires to continue learning and working in global health.

Christina Phuong
Medical Student at USC Keck School of Medicine
Christina is a first year medical student at USC Keck School of Medicine interested in global development, with a focus on healthcare and education.  During her undergraduate career, she spent a summer teaching English to underserved, Aboriginal Taiwanese students in the rural areas of Taitung, Taiwan.  She has been heavily involved in mentorship programs such as Asian American Tutorial Project, which provides tutoring services to immigrant students of lower socioeconomic statuses.  She hopes to promote self sustaining programs and pursue research projects in developing countries.  Christina holds a BS in Biochemistry from UCLA.

Aaron Reyes
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Aaron is a first year medical student at David Geffen School of Medicine interested in improving culturally sensitive access to primary care and mental health in under-resourced communities. Prior to starting medical school, he served with AmeriCorps as an Algebra interventionist in Miami-Dade high schools. Following this year of service, he lived in New York City working as a medical scribe for CityMD Urgent Care. While in undergraduate he coordinated a program exploring leadership and environmental science with high school students in Providence, Rhode Island. Aaron holds a BA in Anthropology from Brown University.

Public Relations Co-Chairs

Kaitlin Arena (Advisor to Public Relations Co-Chairs)
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Kaitlin is a second-year medical student at UCLA who is passionate about maternal and child health. This past summer, she traveled to Botswana to study the prevalence and predictors of unintended pregnancy among women in the country’s capital. Prior to medical school, Kaitlin developed a passion for women’s empowerment, reproductive health, and the social determinants of health after working in an HIV clinic in Thailand, and conducting research on the role of trauma, racism, and discrimination on adverse birth outcomes at UCSF. She plans to become a family medicine physician or obstetrician, caring for underserved women domestically and internationally. Kaitlin holds a BA in Human Biology from Stanford University.

Cosima Lenz
Graduate Student at UCLA Fielding School of Public Health
Cosima is a first year Masters in Public Health student at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health with a concentration in policy. Prior to UCLA, Cosima received her BA in German with a minor in global health from Northwestern University, where she was also on the dive team. She spent several months in South Africa working in an after-school program to improve English capabilities of children living on wine farms with a high percentage of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. She has conducted research in Germany on their changing health system as a result of the 2011 E. coli Outbreak as well as more clinically looking into frequent combinations between diagnosis and operations. Last year she spent six months in Guatemala volunteering in a public health clinic and teaching a health class to indigenous women from rural areas. She hopes to finish her MPH and pursue a Dr.PH in international health.    

Collin Price
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Collin is a first year medical student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Collin received a BS in Biology and Psychology from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2013. While at UNC, Collin completed his honors thesis in the lab of Dr. Alan Jones, where he investigated G-protein signaling in plants. After graduating, Collin spent two years working in the Functional Imaging in Neuropsychiatric Disorders (FIND) lab at Stanford University. As lab manager and research assistant of the FIND lab, he was responsible for the administrative duties of the lab as well as assisting in the collection and analysis of fMRI data. Today, Collin's research interests have expanded to include global health, with a particular interest in improving access to care.

Sreetha Sidharthan
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Prior to starting her medical education at the David Geffen School of Medicine, Sreetha spent two years at the National Institutes of Health working as an associate investigator of clinical trials for the treatment of hepatitis C. There she worked closely with the urban, underserved populations of DC and Baltimore and developed an interest in local and global health disparities. She also presented her research at national conferences and was a recipient of the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) Young Investigator Award in 2015.  As an undergraduate, Sreetha received funding through the Mary Gates Scholarship to pursue research on the pathogenesis of human herpesvirus 8. Sreetha holds a BS in Biochemistry from the University of Washington. 

Alex Upfill-Brown
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Alex is a first year medical student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Prior to starting medical school, Alex worked as a researcher for three years with the Institute for Disease Modeling in Bellevue, Washington. There he led and contributed to statistical modeling and analysis projects related to polio, malaria, and sleeping sickness in Nigeria, Pakistan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Zambia, and Bangladesh. He had the opportunity to work closely with leaders and policy makers at the Gates Foundation, WHO, CDC, PATH and country Ministries of Health. His research and academic interests include vaccines, public health policy, access to and systems of care, social determinants of health, and epidemiological methods. Alex holds a MSc in Sociology from the University of Oxford, as well as a BS (Honors) in Neurobiology from Stanford University. His master’s academic research focused on the social patterning of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASDs) diagnosis in the UK, a natural extension of his undergraduate focus on ASD developmental neurobiology.

Speakers Co-Chairs

Barbara Lam
Medical Student at USC Keck School of Medicine
Barbara is a second year medical student at USC Keck School of Medicine. She is a Speaker Co-Chair for the Los Angeles Global Health Conference, and is interested in how narrative informs public health and global medicine.

Anish Parekh
Medical Student at USC Keck School of Medicine
Anish is a first year MD and MPH candidate at the Keck school of Medicine at USC. During his undergraduate studies, also at USC, Anish channeled his interest in global health by co-founding MED SRG, Inc., a nonprofit with the mission to promote sustainable and accessible care for all by collecting and redistributing excess surgical supplies to those most in need abroad. Anish also provides face-to-face education on health insurance options to underserved communities in LA as president of the Keck student interest group, Connecting Californians to Care at USC. Additionally, Anish explores the link between genetic markers and immunological function as a research fellow at the Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center of USC.

Lauren Platt
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Lauren is a first year medical student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. Prior to coming to UCLA, she worked for the Polio Eradication Initiative at the World Health Organization (WHO) for 2.5 years. During her first year at WHO, Lauren worked for the Polio Research, Policy and Product Development team in a team which focused on taking the results of various different polio research projects and translating them into global policy recommendations. Lauren then moved to WHO’s regional office for the Western Pacific where she her main focus was to support Laos, Cambodia, Mongolia, Samoa, Viet Nam, and other countries in Asia plan for the introduction of a new polio vaccine. She is currently interested in the clinical development and commercialization of affordable vaccines for diseases that disproportionately affect people living in poverty.  Lauren holds a BA in Human Biology with a concentration in Infectious Disease and Global Justice from Stanford University. 


Angela Goddard
Medical Student at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA

Institutional Staff & Faculty

Ashley Bardon, MPH
Program Manager, UCLA Center for World Health
Ashley is the Program Manager for the UCLA Center for World Health. Ashley supports all of the Center’s focus areas – education, research, and service. Prior to joining the Center, Ashley was a Software Development Project Manager with Outlook Amusements and also spent several years supporting project development and evaluation at Transtria, LLC (St. Louis, MO) and Global Policy Solutions (Washington, DC) working on several of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s key programs in physical activity and nutrition. Projects of notable significance were the Evidence Review for Childhood Obesity, a systematic literature review of over 2,000 academic articles for the classification of intervention strategies with significant impact and effectiveness; the Leadership for Healthy Communities program, a capacity building initiative to support local, state, and federal policymakers in the promotion and creation of policies supporting healthy eating and physical activity; and the Healthy Kids, Healthy Communities program, a national intervention program to evaluate the effects of community-level policy and environmental changes on childhood obesity, healthy eating habits, and engagement in physical activity.
Ashley earned a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences from the University of Missouri in 2008 and a Master of Public Health in Health Policy from Saint Louis University in 2010.  Her global health interests include social, policy, and environmental influences on a population’s health, particularly in underserved communities.  She is also interested in learning more about the role of technology in improving communities’ health and quality of life.

Jessica Barnette, MPH
Administrative Assistant, UCLA Center for World Health
Jessica Barnette, MPH, is the Administrative Assistant for the UCLA Center for World Health. Jessica earned a BA in Communications from Santa Clara University in 2010 and a MPH from UCLA in 2014. While serving in the Peace Corps in Ukraine from 2010-2012, Jessica became interested in public health issues and led community-wide projects on topics such as HIV/AIDS and healthy lifestyles. Prior to joining the Center, Jessica interned with John Snow Inc. (JSI) in Rosslyn, VA where she worked with the Reproductive Health Group. Jessica coordinated a field visit to Jordan where she interviewed health workers for a report on access to emergency contraception in crisis settings. Jessica’s prior experience and commitment to social justice work make her passionate about improving health outcomes in underserved communities.

Thomas J. Coates, PhD
Director of the UCLA Center for World Health
Thomas J. Coates, PhD, is Director of the UCLA Center for World Health, which advances the international and global health mission of the David Geffen School of Medicine and UCLA Health. He is Co-Director of the University of California Global Health Institute, which advances the mission of the 10-campus UC system to improve the lives of people in California and around the world. He is the Michael and Sue Steinberg Endowed Professor of Global AIDS Research within the Division of Infectious Diseases at UCLA. He co-founded the Center for AIDS Prevention Studies at UCSF in 1986 and directed it from 1991 to 2003, and was the founding Executive Director of the UCSF AIDS Research Institute, leading it from 1996 to 2003. His areas of emphasis and expertise are global health, HIV prevention and its relationship to treatment, and international health policy. With funding from USAID and WHO, he led a randomized controlled trial to determine the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of HIV voluntary counseling and testing for individuals and couples in Kenya, Tanzania, and Trinidad. He has just completed directing a 48-community randomized clinical trial (NIMH Project Accept/HPTN 043) in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Tanzania, and Thailand to determine the impact of strategies for mobile HIV voluntary counseling and testing and for changing community norms on HIV incidence at the community level.

Dr. Coates was cited in Science in 2002 as the 4th-highest-funded scientist in the clinical, social, and behavioral sciences. He was elected to the Institute of Medicine (IOM) in 2000, and has served on the IOM’s Board on Global Health.

Nivvy Hundal, MPH
Program Manager, USC Institute of Global Health

Traci Wells, PhD
Director of Education, UCLA Center for World Health
Traci Wells, PhD, is the Director of Education for the UCLA Center for World Health. She works with medical students who have an interest in global health, while also facilitating the training of foreign physicians who come to UCLA for continuing education. Her doctoral degree is in International Education, and she has extensive knowledge of the education systems of both the U.S. and other countries. Dr. Wells has an active interest in global health education in the medical education curriculum.