Global WACh Graduate Certificate Program


Why WACh?

The health of women, adolescents and children are intertwined and essential for societal well-being. The Global WACh Certificate program was created to give a comprehensive overview of current issues in global health as they pertain to the health and well-being of women, adolescents, and children. Graduates of the program will gain base knowledge and skills to work in fields related to global health of women, adolescents and children.

Successful certificate students will complete 15 credits and attend 2/3 of yearly Certificate student meetings (or 6 total meetings) to build skills and network with peers and faculty. Please see the “Certificate Requirements” tab for a full list of Certificate requirements.

Interdisciplinary Approach

Graduate students enrolled in the Global WACh certificate program are from a variety of backgrounds, with different interests related to women, adolescent and child health. Our certificate program includes a broad range of courses that count towards certificate credits. Topics include:

  • Infant, child, adolescent health
  • Nutrition
  • Policy & health assessment
  • Reproductive health
  • Pharmacy & environment
  • Maternal child health
  • Global health

Who should apply

Students enrolled in any University of Washington graduate school program are welcome to apply. Applications for the certificate program are reviewed on a rolling admissions basis. To apply, please send the following documents to Kate Pfizenmaier, Global WACh Program Manager, at

  2. Unofficial Transcript
  3. CV/Resume
  4. Statement of Purpose

See the tabs below for profiles on current Certificate students, Certificate requirements, and alumni. 

Baishakhi Basu, Doctoral Candidate, Biocultural Anthropology, MPH, Global Health

baishakhi picBaishakhi Basu is a doctoral candidate of Biocultural anthropology. Her research aims to investigate the effect of early-life nutrition on ovarian development and reproductive function in women. She currently is applying for grants to conduct her dissertation fieldwork in Matlab, a remote sub-district of Bangladesh. In August 2013 Baishakhi successfully conducted her pilot work funded by pilot grants awarded by Medical anthropology and Global Health as well as the Dept. of Anthropology. Baishakhi serves as a teaching assistant in Biocultural anthropology. Baishakhi was an awardee of the Wadsworth international doctoral fellowship from 2010 to 2013. She earned her MA in biocultural anthropology in 2012 from U of Washington. She also held a CSDE (Centre for studies in Demography and Ecology) fellowship in 2010. Baishakhi has volunteered and interned for projects on environmental action plan, and maternal and neonatal health.

Nazila Dabestani, MPH student, Global Health

FaceshotNazila is an MPH student in the department of Global Health, having completed her BA in Medical Anthropology and Global Health.  Medical Anthropology has led her to focus on political, economic, social, psychological, and cultural aspects of health – particularly in women and children.  After graduating, Nazila spent a year teaching eleventh grade math on an outer atoll of the Republic of Marshall Islands, researched childhood risk of type 1 diabetes in Washington state, and coordinated studies at Fred Hutch looking at health outcomes of patients with hematologic cancers.  As an MPH student, she is the Global Health senate representative for UW GPSS (Graduate & Professional Student Senate) and co-chair of the Deans Advisory Council for Students in the School of Public Health.  Nazila is currently working as a post/grad intern in the Maternal & Child Health and Nutrition division at PATH.

Molly Feder, MPH student, Epidemiology

MollyFeder_PhotoMolly Feder is an MPH student in the Department of Epidemiology with a concentration in Maternal and Child Health.  She received her BA in International Affairs concentrating in Global Health from the Elliott School of International Affairs at the George Washington University. Prior to attending UW, Molly worked as a Government Relations Associate and Database Administrator at the Council for Responsible Nutrition in Washington, DC where she advocated for enhanced FDA oversight of the vitamin and supplement industry.  As an MPH student, Molly is a Maternal and Child Health Trainee and is interested in research pertaining to family planning and reproductive health.


Tracy Lam-Hine, MBA/MPA student, Foster School of Business and Evans School of Public Affairs

Lam-Hine, Tracy - Prof HeadshotTracy is a dual MBA/MPA student at the Foster School of Business and Evans School of Public Affairs, focusing on mission-driven organizational effectiveness and program evaluation. After graduating from UC Berkeley with degrees in Economics and Public Policy, he began his career in Deloitte Consulting’s Strategy and Operations practice, focusing primarily on the domestic life sciences and healthcare industries. Later, while working as Senior Research Associate at a funder of workforce social enterprises, Tracy was responsible for management and implementation of a 4-year outcomes evaluation of the social enterprise model. Tracy is deeply interested in healthcare access as an important issue of social justice, and believes strongly in the importance of culturally competent and end user-focused program evaluation to continuously improve healthcare interventions.

Lacey Rose Miller, DNP Student, Perinatal Clinical Nurse Specialist

LaceyRoseMillerLacey Rose was born and raised in Portland, Oregon to a family of energy-efficient, long-haired vegetarians. Her dream of promoting women’s health internationally for those most underserved started when she was twelve-years-old. Lacey has enjoyed her volunteer hours spent with nonprofit organizations over the years offering health consultation, conducting health promotion projects with her global community members and organizing and leading healthcare volunteer teams abroad. As a family maternity nurse, her work at home as well as internationally focuses on maternal and newborn health promotion. She is currently enrolled in the University of Washington’s Doctor of Nursing Practice program as a Perinatal Clinical Nurse Specialist. She hopes to find a faculty position that will (1) allow her to teach obstetrics to nursing students, (2) offer her inclusion on volunteer trips abroad with students and (3) provide her with the opportunity to educate nursing and non-nursing students in women’s, children and newborn global health. She also hopes to continue consultant work with international aid organizations, public health officials, tribal leaders or governmental organizations regarding women and newborn health.

Jennifer Mueller, MPH Student, Department of Epidemiology

Jen MuellerJen is a MPH student in the Department of Epidemiology with a concentration in Maternal and Child Health. She received her BA in Anthropology and Biology from the University of Virginia, and prior to coming to UW, she coordinated gynecologic oncology clinical research trials, worked with a child malnutrition program in Cambodia, and conducted research on maternal healthcare access in Morocco and Switzerland. Currently, Jen is a research assistant working to incorporate mental health care into primary care settings for the UW AIMS Center, and she is also a program intern for One By One, where she facilitates a global women’s health education program  focusing on obstetric fistula for Seattle high school students. Her research interests include women’s mental health issues and the social determinants of sexual and reproductive health outcomes.

Ke Pan, MPH student, Global Health

IMG_1872Ke Pan is an MPH student in the department of Global Health, having received her BA in Public Health with a concentration in Maternal and Child Health from Huazhong University of Science and Technology (HUST) and Masters Degree in Medicine from Third Military Medical University in China. Prior to coming to UW, she worked as a resident in the department of Obstetrics and Gynecology for three years and conducted research about the quality of women’s life after surgery for Pelvic Organ Prolapse. She also conducted a research regarding the prevalence of hypertension and obesity in adolescents. Ke Pan is deeply interested in improving global health disparities of women, adolescents and children through education, awareness, and access to healthcare.

Marina Plesons, MPH student, Global Health

DSCF5048Marina is an MPH student in the department of Global Health, having received her BA in Biology and Anthropology of Global Health from Dartmouth College. Prior to coming to UW, she conducted research regarding the introduction of a mobile health van in rural Vermont for homeless and/or uninsured individuals, contributed to a World Bank grant for a national trauma system and Level 1 trauma hospital in Haiti, and worked as a health policy fellow in the Maternal and Child Health department at the Ministry of Health of Rwanda. She also co-founded a global health non-profit, called Health Advocacy Innovations, with the current goal of streamlining the treatment of pediatric MDR-TB treatment, for which there are no child-friendly formulations of the necessary medications.

Nuttada Panpradist, PhD student, Bioengineering

IMG_1304Originally from Thailand, Nuttada Panpradist aspires to become a professor of bioengineering so that she can remain engage in the areas she is passionate about: medicinal science, technology, healthcare and teaching. Currently, Nuttada is a PhD student in the Department of Bioengineering under the supervision of Dr. Barry Lutz. Her research focuses on developing point-of-care devices for detecting HIV/TB infection and drug resistance. She is the technical lead on the OLA-Simple project, engineering a simple-to-use HIV drug resistant test (funded by Global WACh – W.H. Coulter foundation Seed Award 2012, Seattle’s Children Bridge Funding 2013, NIH R01 2014-19). Besides the OLA-Simple project, Nuttada works on developing point-of-care diagnostics for pulmonary TB from urine samples. This project was initiated from her GH 590 classroom project with Dr. Diana Marangu (a clinician from Kenya who was an MPH student at UW) and was subsequently funded by Global WACh – W.H. Coulter foundation Seed Award 2014. Through her participation in the Global WACh certificate program, Nuttada hopes to acquire better insights in WACh-related global health issues and explore more ways to utilize bioengineering skills to develop solutions to address these issues. She also hopes to expand her academic network by interacting with other Global WACh students and faculty members.

Sonjelle Shilton, MPH student, Global Health

Shilton, Sonjelle - Global WACh pictureSonjelle is a MPH candidate in the department of Global Health. Her studies concentrate on reproductive health, and the intersection between conflict and public health.  She received her B.A in History from Rutgers University. She then managed HardtHaven, a local grassroots organization that runs both a home for AIDS orphans, and a community-based support and education center located in Ghana for several years.  She was a research intern from June to November 2015 at the World Health Organization, Geneva, Department of Reproductive Health and Research. Her research focused on identifying facilitators and barriers to the country-level adoption of the preventing adolescent pregnancy WHO guidelines. Sonjelle’s professional goal is to develop and implement programs and services that allow access and uptake by adolescents and women in methods of reproductive freedom, focusing on West and Central Africa.

Rebecca Streich, Nursing Student, Family Nurse Practitioner Program

10592933_903164449486_1303526902223986004_nBecky is a registered nurse working in the outpatient setting to promote health in a variety of specialties and settings.  Over the past several years she has enjoyed a variety of volunteer projects globally providing healthcare, health education and public health infrastructure.  She is currently enrolled in the University of Washingtonʼs Doctor of Nursing Practice, Family Nurse Practitioner program.  In the future she hopes to continue promoting globally competent care both here in the United States and abroad.

Julia Velonjara, MPH student, Global Health

P1090311headJulia is an MPH student in the department of Global Health. Her primary interests are in program implementation focusing on reproductive and maternal health of adolescents girls and young women in East Africa. During the first year of her program, Julia is a research assistant for the Program on Global Mental Health. In summer of 2015, she will be traveling to Tanzania to complete her practicum on rural ante-, birth, and post-natal care, and to continue her study of Kiswahili as a FLAS scholarship recipient. Prior to coming to the University of Washington she worked with diverse youth in California on advocacy and engagement for tobacco prevention policies and worked in rural Madagascar as a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer on community development, environmental health, and girls’ empowerment projects. She has a B.A. in Anthropology from Yale University.


15 Total Credits

  • 7 Core Credits
  • 5 Elective Credits
  • 3 Capstone Credits (30 hour equivalent)

All Certificate students must attend at least 6 Certificate Student monthly meetings to be awarded the Global WACh Certificate.  Below is a course checklist that can be used to track progress towards completion of the Program.




The Global WACh Capstone requirement is a 3-credit Independent Study project required to complete the Certificate and is separate from your master’s thesis or doctoral dissertation.  Guidelines, information on selecting a faculty adviser, and examples of capstone projects are linked below.  With questions, please email



Capstone examples:

Shelby Feliciano MSW

The Experiences of Traditional Birth Attendants in Cambodia: A Qualitative Study

Sharla Semana - MSW

Increasing Diversity in the GAPPS Repository Recruitment Process

Jenna Udren – MPH, Community-Oriented PH Practice

Advocacy for a Reproductive Health Course in the University of Washington School of Public Health

Annya Pintak - MSW

The Impact of Gender Roles and Cultural Dynamics in the Work of Global to Local’s Community Health Promoters (CHPs): An Exploration Paper


Habu, Takuya
Takuya Habu
MBA Business
Jenny Lenahan
MPH Epidemiology
Georgina Mendoza
MSW Social Work
Annie Hoopes MD
MPH Maternal and Child Health
Abigail Korn
MPH Global Health
Kirkby Tickell
MPH Epidemiology


Irene Wu


Rita Ismail
PhD Nursing Science
Mona Wiggins
Mona Wiggins
Lisa M. Shawcroft
Rubee Dev
Rubee Dev
MPH, Maternal and Child Health
Christopher Westgard


Annya Pintak
Annya Pintak
jenna udren photo
Jenna Udren
MPH, Community-Oriented Public Health Practice
Not Pictured
Onyinye Anitha Edeh
MPH, Global Health
cert photo
Shelby Feliciano
Sharla Semana
Sharla Semana
Not Pictured
Silvia Huaynoca
MPH, Global Health