Creative writing major accepted to top public health programs

A spring 2017 graduate will attend a graduate school for public health studies.

Saif Sarfani, Viking Fusion Reporter
Feature Photo Credit: Ben Walker

MOUNT BERRY, Ga. – After graduating in May, senior Courtney Wimberly will attend a graduate program for global infectious disease epidemiology studies. Her interests in creative writing and biology led her to pursue this path.

“I knew that I was good at writing, and I love it, even though I love biology too,” Wimberly said. “I just felt like I would be more at home as a creative writing major, so I swapped, and declared creative writing toward the end of my sophomore year and biology as my minor.”

While applying to various public health programs, Wimberly found that she could major in creative writing and still qualify for admission.

“I did a lot of research in public health schools I was interested in going to, and I found that you don’t need to be a hard sciences major to get into public health school,” Wimberly said. “You just need to take basic biology, calculus and statistics courses and I had already done that.”

Wimberly has been accepted to the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University and the Milken Institute School of Public Health at The George Washington University. She has yet to choose.

Wimberly’s creative writing and biology professors commented on their experiences with her in the classroom.

Dana Professor of English, Rhetoric and Writing Sandra Meek said that Wimberly’s ability to analyze situations and write well will translate into her career.

“She’s really [a] great writer both creatively and critically,” Meek said. “Her fluency in being able to talk to a variety of people and her diplomacy will be of asset.”

Associate Professor of Biology Christopher Hall taught Wimberly in his epidemiology and public health course. He said that her major and minor have enabled her to write effective case studies.

“Whether drafting a case study, grant proposal, or manuscript, being able to write effectively is not only commendable, but essential, and this is something that Courtney does very well,” Hall said. “It will carry her far.”

 After completing her public health degree, Wimberly hopes to work as an epidemiologist and equip poor and infected populations with tools necessary to prevent future outbreaks.

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