The Community and Behavioral Health Student Association was established to provide opportunities for professional development, service-oriented outreach and student social events. CBHSA aims to create unity among all students in the Department of Community and Behavioral Health by serving as a means of communication between students, faculty, the College of Public Health, and the community.
Aims and Functions
- Develop a sense of community among all students and staff in the Department of Community and Behavioral Health
- Expand opportunities for student professional development
- Facilitate student dialogue with local, state, and national organizations
All CBHSA sponsored events are open to students studying Community and Behavioral Health. Elections for officer positions are held twice a year. Contact an officer for more information.
Alaina Elliott-Wherry (she/her) – President
Alaina is a second-year MPH student in the Department of Community and Behavioral Health. Alaina graduated with a BS in Psychology, Sociology, and Gender Studies from Mount Mercy University in 2020 and is passionate about health equity, increasing access to health care, substance abuse prevention, and working with individuals with special health care needs. Alaina currently works as a Graduate Research Assistant at the Iowa Institute of Public Health Research and Policy, as a Youth Coordinator at the Alliance of Coalitions for Change (AC4C), as a Youth Advisory Council Assistant at the Child Health Specialty Clinics, and is part of the Equity in Health Science and Practice (E-HSP) group. Alaina is a Health Equity Advancement Lab (HEAL) member and is on the Board of Directors at the Area Substance Abuse Council. When Alaina isn’t working or at school, she likes to read, drink copious amounts of coffee, and do yoga with her partner, Ethan.
Yajaira Bolanos (she/her)- Vice President
Anjelica Kamradt (she/her) – Professional Development Co-Chair
Anjelica is a second-year MPH student in the Community and Behavioral Health Department. She is a first-generation student from Sioux City, IA. She earned her B.A. in Global Health Studies and a certificate in Non-profit Management at the University of Iowa in May 2021. Anjelica is interested in various public health topics such as health education and health behavior, mental health, minority health, health equity, and gender health, to name a few.
Rachel Sears (she/her) – Professional Development Co-Chair
Abinaya Ilavarasan (she/her) – Public Relations Co-Chair
Abi Ilavarasan(she/her) is a second-year MPH student. Abi got her Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. In addition to CBHSA, Abi is involved with the Student DEI subcommittee, HEAL, works for the PRC, and does research as a GRA for Sato Ashida. In her spare time, she likes to read a book, watch a good movie or show, go out to eat, and go to the Farmer’s Market.
Kamara Shaw (she/her) – Public Relations Co-Chair
Kamara is a second-year MPH student in the Community and Behavioral Health Department from Iowa City, IA. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and graduated with a Public Health, B.A. (U2G) and African American Studies minor in May 2022. Kamara is a research assistant in CBH studying e-cigarette cessation. She also works in the OBGYN department at the UIHC, assisting with maternal-fetal medicine projects and the Maternal Fetal Tissue Bank. Her interests include maternal child health, health equity, and Black women’s health.
Hianca Pinho (she/her)- Service Co-Chair
Hianca is a second year MPH student in the Community and Behavioral Health Department. She is originally from Brazil but has resided in the Quad Cities, IA, for eight years. She earned her B.A. in Spanish and Minor in Portuguese at the University of Iowa in 2021. Hianca is currently working as a Graduate Research Assistant. She is also a Public Health Trainee for the Iowa Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities Program, or ILEND. Hianca is passionate about Maternal and Child Health and underrepresented groups, including migrant, immigrant, and refugee communities.
Payton Klippert (she/her)- Service Co-Chair
Payton Klippert is a second year MPH student in the department of Community and Behavioral Health. Payton is originally from Ankeny, Iowa and graduated with a B.A. in Public Health and a certificate of Nonprofit Leadership and Philanthropy from the University of Iowa in the spring of 2021. She is passionate about health equity, food access, vaccination, mental health, and substance use prevention. She currently works as the School Nutrition Programs and Policy Intern for Clear Creek Amana Community School District and volunteers as a Food Rescue Route Volunteer at Table to Table in Iowa City. In her free time, Payton enjoys exploring Iowa City coffee shops, taking care of her many house plants, exploring the outdoors, and spending time with friends and family.
Emily Laverty (she/her) – Social Co-Chair
Emily is a second year MPH student in the Department of Community and Behavioral Health from Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She graduated from the University of Iowa in 2020 with a B.A. in Interdepartmental Studies (Health Science Emphasis) and a Minor in Music. Before starting the MPH program, she was a Research Assistant in a cancer research lab within the UI Dept. of Internal Medicine. Emily is currently working as a Graduate Research Assistant with Dr. Ebonee Johnson on projects pertaining to HIV/substance abuse prevention (Project PEER) and is helping develop a school mental health initiative for Iowa educators (Project STEER) with the Scanlon Center for School Mental Health. Emily is interested in health equity, health communication strategies, and mental health. When not at school, she loves to attend Hawkeye Football games (for the band) and play board games!
Madeline McCabe (she/her) – Social Co-Chair
Maddie is a second year MPH student in the Department of Community and Behavioral Health. She is originally from Hastings, Minnesota, and graduated from Grinnell College with a B.A. in Psychology and Neuroscience in 2022. Maddie is currently assisting in two research projects pertaining to food security in Iowa through the UI Prevention Research Center for Rural Health, and also serves on the Board of Directors for Local Foods Connection in Grinnell, Iowa. Her research interests are food systems, community nutrition, environmental health, and the link between nutrition and mental health. Outside of work, she loves running, cooking, and hiking.