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Trainee Ambassador Group 2017

From January to December, the 2017 TAG cohort attended monthly virtual meetings and collaborated to develop trainee-focused products. In April 2017, Ambassadors developed and facilitated a plenary session at the Making Lifelong Connections (MLC 17) Conference introducing trainees to MCH Connects, an initiative to facilitate connections among MCH Training Programs. Utilizing feedback from MLC17 participants, the TAG updated the MCH Connects platform and officially released it to the MCH Training Program network in September 2017. To coincide with this launch, the TAG hosted a webinar on September 18, 2017. View the MCH Connects TAG webinar to learn more.  Exit Disclaimer Throughout the fall, the TAG continued to market MCH Connects and drafted questions for a user experience survey to be piloted with MCH Connects users in 2018.

Thank you to the 2017
Trainee Ambassadors

Allison Muzzey

Leadership Education in Adolescent Health (LEAH)

Allison Muzzey is in the second year of her Master’s program in Sociology at Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis, concentrating in Medical Sociology. She is currently a second year LEAH fellow at Indiana University School of Medicine. She conducts research on adolescent sexual health, focusing on sexual and gender minorities and sexual coercion among adolescent women. Allison will pursue her PhD, continuing her research on sexual and gender minority health. Going forward, she plans to use this research to develop programs and interventions for sexual and gender minority adolescents.

Alyssa Bosold

Centers of Excellence in Maternal & Child Health (CoE)

Alyssa Bosold is a first-year Health Services MPH student at the University of Washington School of Public Health, with a concentration in maternal and child health. Prior to starting her Master’s program, Alyssa worked as a Public Health Associate with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As an Associate, Alyssa assisted with STD and TB Prevention at the Florida Department of Health in Broward County. In addition, Alyssa volunteered as a health advocacy intern with Planned Parenthood for three years, and in 2013 served as an AmeriCorps VISTA, working with pregnant and parenting teens on the Blackfeet Reservation in Browning, Montana. Alyssa’s passion is reproductive health and family planning, and she hopes to continue working in this field upon graduating from the UW.

Emily Pietrantone

Pediatric Pulmonary Center (PPC)

Emily Pietrantone is a pediatric nurse practitioner certified in both primary and acute pediatric care. She currently serves patients and families through the Hospitalist Service of Children's Hospital and Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska. A recent graduate of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, she completed the Pediatric Pulmonary Center 2015 traineeship. Emily is passionate about pediatric chronic care, and she has a special interest in investigating and promoting techniques to increase patients' self-management of their chronic pediatric illnesses. To this end, she has participated in and led various quality improvement projects. As a member of the Trainee Ambassador Group, Emily hopes to continue her leadership development while fostering connections with other trainees and traineeship programs.

Holly Hodges

Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics (DBP)

Holly Hodges is a first year Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics Fellow at Harvard University/Boston Children’s Hospital. She grew up in Mississippi and attended medical school at Baylor in Houston, Texas. She completed Pediatrics training at Harvard/Boston Children’s Hospital followed by a year as Chief Resident during which she focused on resident and medical student education. She is currently a member of the Teaching Academy at Boston Children’s Hospital, serves on the Graduate Medical Education Committee, and plans to continue to invest in improving resident education in Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics during her fellowship. She is a member of her institution’s Autism Clinical Outcomes Workgroup which seeks to improve the care of patients and their families through education of hospital staff, community advocacy, and development of clinical practice guidelines. Her fellowship research will seek to describe the presenting characteristics and functional outcomes following early intensive behavioral interventions for infants and toddlers diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder via the DSM-5 criteria.

Meg Versteegen


Meg Versteegen is a second year Health Policy and Management student in the Doctor of Public Health Program at the State University of New York in Albany. She is an active member of the maternal and child health student interest group, and her research interests include preconception health, breastfeeding & infant feeding, oral health, and overall health and wellness promotion. Meg has her MS in Nutrition and is a Registered Dietitian who has worked in a variety of healthcare settings, with advanced training in weight management and nutrition support. Her ultimate goal is to work on programs and policies that can make a positive health difference in local communities.

Michelle Gin

Leadership Education in Adolescent Health (LEAH) & Schools of Public Health (SPH)

Michelle Gin is a full-time Health Educator at the Minnesota Department of Health as well as the part-time National Student Program Coordinator for Physicians for Social Responsibility. She has earned her MPH from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health in Maternal and Child Health with Interdisciplinary Concentrations in (1) Public Health Policy (2) Health Disparities. Michelle was a pre-doctoral fellow through the Leadership Education in Adolescent Health (LEAH) grant. Her research focused on demographic and protective factor differences among Minnesota youth’s reasons for abstaining from sexual intercourse. Michelle has two major interest areas: (1) development of school-based intervention programs to promote healthy choices around adolescent reproductive health and (2) the humanitarian and environmental health consequences from nuclear weapons and radiation. For several years, she has worked in the U.S. and abroad to strengthen nuclear radiation regulations and abolish nuclear weapons through national and international policy.

Nathan Fields

Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (LEND)

Nathan Fields is a first year Master’s student at Vanderbilt University where he is earning his degree in Special Education with an emphasis in Severe and Profound Disabilities. He is also a first year LEND trainee. Prior to attending Vanderbilt, Nathan lived in East Asia four and a half years where he partnered as support staff with a local organization that served children with special needs from birth to young adults. In the future, Nathan hopes to partner with caregivers in enriching quality of life experiences for children from hard places with special needs. 

Raven S. Wright


Raven Wright will be graduating May 2017 from the University of Wisconsin—Milwaukee (UWM) with a Bachelor in Science of Nursing. Throughout her undergraduate experience, Raven has had numerous of opportunities to work with patients with mental and physical impairments as well as various clinical exposures that demonstrated effective clinical reasoning and applied principles of professionalism. While overseas in Malawi Africa, Raven adapted communication skills based on individual, family, and community needs and lead patient educational discussions. For the last 2 years, she has collaborated with students from diverse academic disciplines, as the peer-lead, to develop a MCH “Project of the Year.” This project essentially moved the MCH pipeline back to the middle school level and mentored at-risk youth in hoping for their future and planning for college. One of the biggest lessons Raven has learned, thus far as a MCH-PTP student, is the importance of self-awareness and to continue developing her strengths. Raven believes the MCH-PTP has unremittingly clarified how she can be influential and change the world!

Shelly Johnston


Shelly Johnston is a recent graduate of the University of Washington Graduate Coordinated Program in Dietetics with a Master of Public Health (Public Health Nutrition). During her time at UW, Shelly worked with the UW Center for Public Health Nutrition to complete a qualitative analysis of breastfeeding policy adoption in Washington State clinics. She also served as an MCHB Nutrition Leadership Trainee and collaborated with fellow trainees to initiate a peer network program. Her research interests include breastfeeding policies, local/national food system policies, and strategies to support families during the first 1,000 days of life.

Yuka Asada

Schools of Public Health (SPH) & Nutrition

Yuka Asada is a Post-Doctoral Research Associate at the Institute for Health Research and Policy (IHRP) at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). In this position, she works on a mixed methods USDA Cooperative Agreement project, where she conducts qualitative research on child nutrition and health policies related to the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. She recently completed a PhD in MCH UIC, as well as an internship with the World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Office in Copenhagen, Denmark.


If you have questions or need further information,


Making Lifelong Connections Annual Meeting

Making Lifelong Connections website Exit Disclaimer


Links to PDF "TAG plenary session at MLC 17"

TAG plenary session at MLC 2017 Exit Disclaimer


The Trainee Ambassador Group flyer PDF document

TAG Flyer

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