By: Nora Fox and Makshita "Maks" Luthra
With the beginning of a new year comes exciting changes and updates to the Bruce Vento project. One such development is the addition of our newest team member, Makshita "Maks" Luthra, as the new graduate research assistant!
My name is Makshita (or Maks) and I am a dentist and a graduate student at the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, pursuing a master’s degree in Public Health Administration & Policy. Prior to enrolling for the graduate program, I practiced at a charitable dental hospital, served as a community health educator and worked as a healthcare management associate with a consulting firm in India. I also volunteered with a non-profit organization dedicated to conducting extensive analysis and research on the needs of institutionalized children. I assisted young girls in identifying their strengths, motivated them to achieve their goals and facilitated their journey toward an independent and sustainable life.
I enjoy working with diverse communities and my research interests focus on health disparities, community health needs assessment, school health education, program monitoring and evaluation, and improving care processes and outcomes. I have accepted the position of graduate research assistant to begin immediately and am excited to join the team!
As the previous graduate research assistant for the past 12 months (and recent graduate from the University of Minnesota's School of Social Work), I would like to extend my sincerest thanks and appreciation for everyone involved in the Bruce Vento project. From the school engineers at Bruce Vento to the various members of the school garden committee and beyond, I have been so lucky to work with each and every one of you.
I would like to especially thank Judy Myers and Sara Langworthy for welcoming me into the project and providing me with the guidance and opportunities to make the most out of my graduate school adventure. To hear more about my experience as the research assistant and the irreplaceable opportunities I encountered, visit my recent blog post, Where Real Learning Happens.
If you want to learn more about the great work happening at Bruce Vento Elementary School and how you can be involved, check out our project website. And be sure to follow us on Twitter (@CYFCumn), and subscribe to our YouTube channel.
Healthy Minds, Healthy Bodies, Healthy Learners is an ongoing partnership between the Extension Children, Youth, and Family Consortium and the Bruce Vento Elementary School. Together, along with many other partners, we are developing engaging learning environments that promote student learning and wellness.