Former MPH Student Honored with International Award

This past month, Awatef Ben Ramadan received one of four Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE) 2016 Libyan Student Excellence Awards. Awatef was nominated by her PhD advisor, Professor Jeannette Jackson-Thompson, the Director of the Missouri Cancer Registry. Ben Ramadan is an Alumna of the MU Master of Public Health(MPH) Program. She graduated from the program in December of 2011, and majored in Health Promotion and Policy.  

As part of its 50th anniversary celebrations, and in an effort to recognize and reward students’ achievements, The CBIE sponsored a new award recognizing the outstanding contributions that Libyan students at all academic levels make to communities in Libya and North America.

Ben Ramadan’s research experience is in secondary data analysis and epidemiology with a focus on estimating incidence and prevalence of tuberculosis in Libya in 2005. Ben Ramadan’s work in this area was published in 2011,(Estimation of Pulmonary Tuberculosis incidence in Northwest Libya).

In addition to Ben Ramadan’s research experience, her excellent performance in PhD course work, yearly progress report, and current PhD research were taken into consideration for the award. The focus of her PhD research is estimating female breast cancer burden in Missouri, and transforming the Missouri Cancer Registry from an incidence registry to a survival registry. These changes to the registry positively impact public health policy and cancer related research, and help improve women’s health in Missouri.

To be considered for the CBIE excellence award was a great honor and a privilege, and this award means a lot to me and my family,” Said Ben Ramadan. “I would like to thank my brilliant and lovely PhD adviser, Dr. JJT, the director of MCR and the associate professor at the MU-Columbia Campus whose leadership and vision driven my PhD process from day one.”

“Public health rests on the understanding that our global community is more connected than ever,” said Lise Saffran, Director of the MU MPH Program.  “Dr. Ben Ramadan’s work applying informatics to the prevention of disease will help improve lives both here and abroad.”

Ben Ramadan is in the third year of the PhD program in the University of Missouri Informatics Institute (MU II) and has completed all course work with an excellent cumulative GPA. In 2015 she passed the PhD qualifying exam and passed her comprehensive exam on November 11, 2016. Ben Ramadan is preparing to defend her PhD thesis in Health Informatics from MUII at the end of the 2017 Spring semester.