Julie Lee: A soldier for public health

Julie Lee began her journey with Campbell University in the fall of 2013 when she enrolled in the College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences’ Master of Science in Public Health program. Armed with a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and her registered nurse certificate, Lee served in the United States Army as an Army Public Health Nurse for 16 of her 18 years of service.
As an Army Public Health Nurse, she provided education and training on infectious diseases and environmental safety. She coordinated health fairs, immunization clinics, and child car seat safety classes. While stationed at Monson Army Health Center at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, Lee served as chief of the preventative medicine department where she supervised the offices of environmental health, occupational health, public health nursing, industrial hygiene, and the Army Wellness Center. That is what launched her into the realm of public health and inspired her to return to school.
Lee graduated with Campbell’s Class of 2015 on Friday, May 8, with her Master of Science in Public Health degree.
What sparked your interest in a master’s degree in public health?
I have a passion for public health and wanted to learn more about the public health field. I specifically wanted to learn how I could impact community health in a positive way.
What practicum did you work on while you were in the program? What kind of activities were you involved with through the practicum?
I worked with the Johnston County Health Department and assisted with coordinating a community forum. This forum was conducted to determine the health needs of community members. I also worked with the Harnett County Health Department. During this practicum, I assisted with researching funding opportunities for the Parents As Teachers and Teens As Parents Programs. During my last practicum, I worked with the Fort Liberty Preventive Medicine section. During this practicum, I assisted with creating a newsletter for the Triad Fitness Program.
How did that impact you and your vision of public health?
My practicum experiences helped me gain a better understanding of the community’s health needs (military and civilian). The practicum allowed me to see public health in action in the civilian sector.
What are your post-graduation plans? What was involved in the process of securing those plans? What responsibilities will you have in your role?
After graduation, I will be stationed at Fort Liberty, which is located North Carolina. I will serve as the Chief, Army Public Health Nursing (C,APHN). During my practicum at Fort Liberty, I worked with the C, APHN and the C, PM. This networking and communication secured my plans to work on Fort Liberty upon graduation.
My duties as the C, APHN will include: Retiree Day Coordinator, Influenza (Flu) clinic coordinator, Soldier medical readiness support, trainer and advisor for staff health promotion training, Health Consultation for Child and Youth Services (CYSS), Public Health System Assessment, Population Health Liaison, Workforce Development, Community Health Status Assessment, Health promotion program development, implementation and evaluation, Emergency Preparedness and Response
What piece of advice would you give students interested in the public health field?
Public Health is a great field! If you enjoy serving others and helping them obtain optimal health, then public health is the way to go!
What is the most useful thing you learned while at Campbell?
How to partner and communicate with other organizations in order to improve the health of the community as a whole. — Interview by Leah Whitt, College of Pharmacy & Health Sciences’s communications director