HSOC SAB (Student Advisory Board)

Health and Societies SAB

The HSOC Student Advisory Board is a group of students who plan and sponsor
activities and coordinate information to support the HSOC major. Past activities have
included career panels, blood drives, lectures, field trips, course fairs and social events.
New members will be chosen midyear to overlap with graduating senior members. 

Email us at hsocsab@gmail.com

HSOC Mentoring Program

Are you an HSOC major interested in being a mentor? fill out the application:

HSOC Mentor App

Are you a pre-major nterested in being mentored by a current HSOC major? fill out the survey:


SAB 2013-2014

Sinead Benyaminov '14
(sineadb) Disease and Society)

Grace Conway '14 (conwayg): I am a senior in the College concentrating in Health Care Markets and Finance and minoring in Hispanic Studies. I am especially intrigued by health care reform and health care systems, and hope to pursue a career in health care management or hospital administration. I love that the HSOC major combines all facets of health into one major, and that I am not only allowed but encouraged to take interesting classes about gender and health, history of medicine and bioethics in addition to classes that relate more to my specific interests, career goals and concentration. Since my freshman year, I have worked in the Family Services Unit in the Department of Surgery at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, which has given me an extraordinary opportunity to see how one of the nation’s top hospitals delivers quality care on the front-lines. I look forward to incorporating the experience I’ve gained in the hospital and the knowledge that I’ve learned as an HSOC major into my future endeavors.

Sofia Duque '15 (sduque): I am a junior in the College, with a concentration in Global Health. This concentration allows me to focus on what healthcare means internationally and how different health care systems can be managed and approached. I am interested in promoting healthcare access globally and using a career in medicine and public health to work toward this goal. I am currently doing research in the Center for Excellence in Cancer Communication, I am part of Latino Premedical Association, and I volunteer at a student run clinic called UCC. I hope to acquire skills from these activities and the HSOC major that can be applied to my career.

Kimberly Feeney '15 (kifeeney):  I’m a junior this year, and I came into Penn knowing that I wanted to study Bioethics. I didn’t really have an idea of what the word actually meant, but over the past two years, I’ve gained an understanding of the moral constraints on clinical medicine and research.  As a pre-med student, I feel that the exposure to these issues alongside of the hard sciences, and before the demands of medical school, provide a great foundation for deeper understanding of patients and the role of physicians as caretakers and scientists.  Outside of class, I’m also very active in the Penn Newman Community and the women’s ice hockey team.

Mia Garuccio '14 (garuccio): I am a senior in the College, concentrating in global health. My concentration allows me to combine my passion for international issues with my interest in science, really bringing to life the liberal arts mentality present in the College. I enjoy learning about access to care and global collaboration on medical initiatives, such as work done by the World Health Organization. Outside the classroom and beyond my concentration, my HSOC major has carried over to my work in a Critical Care Medicine lab at CHOP and in my volunteer work at JeffHope Clinics and the VA Medical Center. In my remaining year at Penn, I look forward to completing my senior thesis on HIV and organ transplants, pulling together the facets of the major that have contributed to my time in HSOC.

Carissa Gilbert '15 (carissag): I am a junior concentrating in Disease and Society and minoring in Nutrition as well as Consumer Psychology. My interests are varied but they all pertain to the health field. I plan to become a registered dietitian and work mainly with women and adolescents. Additionally, I hope to contribute to community health outreaches and conduct psychological studies on consumer choice in regards to food. My experiences in academically-based community service, HSOC courses in low-income schools has been especially helpful in alerting me to the politics of food and wellness. Health and Societies is the perfect major because it allows me to examine health from diverse perspectives--economic, political, historical, sociological, and technological--and think critically about many issues that I will likely encounter. After my undergraduate career at Penn, I hope to serve in the Peace Corps, specifically with food security initiatives. Health and Societies is providing me with a thorough background for such global health projects.

Connie Hua '14 (huac): I am a senior in the college studying Health and Societies with a concentration in Health Care Markets and Finance as well as a Minor in History. While my interests in healthcare run the gamut, I am most interested in innovative and cost-effective models of healthcare delivery. My interdisciplinary HSOC classes help me consider and evaluate solutions with multiple perspectives. I am also passionate about serving low-income urban populations and hope to one day combine my interests and passion. Outside of the classroom, I have worked with the Urban Nutrition Initiative to promote healthy lifestyles to West Philadelphia high schoolers and serve as a volunteer at United Community Clinics, a student-run free clinic that provides free healthcare.

Jennifer Lee '14 (jleey): I am a senior concentrating in Global Health. There are several areas in global health and the HSOC program that interest me. In particular my experiences traveling to many different countries has introduced me to health disparities in the world and how and why cultures and societies develop different ideas about health practices and systems. Furthermore, I am particularly interested in the social determinants of health and appreciate that the HSOC program does not take the conventional scientific approach in studying healthcare systems and medicine. I have enjoyed learning about the various social challenges of medicine and about international healthcare systems and issues. The way that different cultures and health care systems have led to varying prevalence and incidence rates of diseases has encouraged me to explore how specific social, political, and economic problems of these different health care systems contribute to these rates. I am very interested in international health organizations and their role in controlling health disparities and implementing health practices in different countries.

Stephen Smilowitz '14 (ssmilo): The Environment & Health concentration combines all of my interests: health, history, urban studies, geography, and environmental studies. With the onset of global warming and imminent climate change, this field is exceptionally relevant on a grand scale while still critical for individuals’ health. Understanding the fundamental causes of illness is a priority for me as a pre-medical student, and it genuinely fascinates me. I am also minoring in Hispanic Studies, and aspire to practice medicine in urban Hispanic immigrant communities. Outside of the classroom, I have been fortunate enough to intern with the CDC’s Healthy Community Design Initiative and gain global experience with the Guatemala Health Initiative. Closer to campus, I am the president of Penn’s chapter of SCOUT BANANA, a volunteer with UCC in East Parkside, and an advocate at LIFT Philly. All of these opportunities I have been afforded at Penn have only augmented the knowledge I have learned in HSOC lectures and seminars, and will best prepare me for career in medicine.

Kathleen Sun '14 (kasun): Being able to explore the myriad opportunities HSOC provides, I have finally found my true areas of interest: healthcare disparities, particularly in developing countries, and health care management, through my concentration: healthcare markets and finance. I have complemented my interests by actively participating in SCOUT BANANA, a non-profit organization on campus that highlights the lack of access to healthcare across Africa. All of the HSOC courses I have taken thus far have given me the foundational tools to apply my knowledge to outside the classroom, and I hope to be able to utilize these tools to combat healthcare inequities in the future.

Priya Srinivasan '14 (priyas ) Health Policy and Law
I am concentrating in Health Policy and Law and minoring in American Public Policy, Political Science, and International Development. My concentration allows me to understand how to impact health care at a national or state level, something I am committed to achieving in the future. I am particularly interested in how to improve access to health care across the country. In consequence, I am very fascinated by current health care reform efforts. My HSOC coursework has given me a deep understanding of health care that I have applied to a number of activities outside of the classroom. As an intern for the Philadelphia Department of Public Health, the Vice President of Operation Smile, a research assistant to two Health Care Management professors, and the Global Health Panel Head for Penn's International Development Conference, I have had the opportunity to apply knowledge gained in the classroom to real world problems. I hope to apply what I learn through the HSOC major to a career in health law.

(All email addresses are @sas.upenn.edu)