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CHCI-Shell Public Policy Fellow
Hometown: San Juan, Puerto Rico
School: University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus
Degree: B.S. in Chemistry
Placement: House Committee on Natural Resources

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Fabiola Pagán Meléndez was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico and raised in Dorado, Puerto Rico. From an early age, her parents instilled in her a deep appreciation for Puerto Rican culture. She graduated from the University of Puerto Rico (UPR) Río Piedras Campus with a Bachelor of Science in chemistry. Fabiola has a great interest in public health and Puerto Rican issues.

Fabiola volunteered for several months at the Maternal Infant Studies Center of the University of Puerto Rico, where she assisted nurses and participated in the daily care of HIV positive patients. She also conducted breast cancer research at the Biochemistry Department at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus, where she co-authored a publication presented at the 2016 American Association for Cancer Research Annual Meeting.

During her college years, she pursued her interest in journalism and joined Pulso Estudiantil, a student-run news outlet on her campus. She became the Executive Director shortly after joining the organization. During her time as Executive Director, Pulso Estudiantil covered the Puerto Rican general elections, and events on the UPR Río Piedras Campus, such as a 2017 student strike. Following the landfall of Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, Fabiola collaborated with NBC News to report from the San Juan area. The video report was featured in the One Voice: Somos Live! fundraiser, which aired on numerous U.S. national platforms and raised over $35 million for disaster relief.

As a CHCI Fellow, Fabiola hopes to better understand how healthcare and Puerto Rican issues will be affected and regulated.