Our work is best described as Engineering for Public Health. When asked to imagine scientific discoveries that have led to dramatic improvements to public health, what comes to mind? Often, people point to vaccine discoveries or antimicrobial drugs; certainly those biomedical discoveries have saved countless lives. But what about the seat belt? Or the refrigerator? The catalytic converter? Chlorinated drinking water? Each of these engineering discoveries has also saved the lives of millions. We have known for hundreds of years that our external environment shapes the picture of our health. Today, the need for public health engineers is greater than ever.
Our group is developing the next generation of innovative leaders armed with the interdisciplinary skills needed to solve today’s complex public and environmental health problems. Our specific interests lie with air pollution, which places a tremendous burden on the health of our communities, our workforce, and our environment. Humans are exposed to air pollution from a variety of sources in nearly every aspect of life: at work, home, and outdoors. As researchers, our goals are 1) to understand the adverse impacts of air pollution on human and environmental health and 2) to engineer solutions to the air pollution problems we face as a society.