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CHCI-CVS Health Graduate Fellow

Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
School: New York University
Degree: Master of Public Health
Placement: Office of Congresswoman Lucille Roybal Allard

Michelle Paucar (she/her/hers) was born in Queens, New York, and raised in Ambato, Ecuador, and Brooklyn, New York. As a daughter of undocumented immigrants, she understands the unique challenges faced by undocumented individuals concerning their eligibility to health coverage and care. Based on her experiences, Michelle is committed to advocating for access to quality public health programming and services for immigrant populations in the United States. In pursuit of her commitment, she received a Master of Public Health, with a concentration in Public Health Policy, from the NYU School of Global Public Health. Michelle received her bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Community Health at Hunter College, City University of New York (CUNY).

Her public health training has been shaped by her academic development and traineeship at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). As an NYC DOHMH – HRTP Intern, Michelle individually and jointly informed the decision-making process of minority-focused initiatives and emergency preparedness projects. In the Center for Health and Community Wellness (CHECW), she delivered targeted health engagement and education activities to the largest Latino subgroups in Queens Community Districts 3 and 4 prior to and post the COVID-19 pandemic. In the Office of Emergency Preparedness and Response (OEPR), Michelle supported its community engagement efforts by developing an approach to integrate community partner feedback into OEPR’s policy development processes. As a HACU National Internship Program (HNIP) Intern, she supported the program evaluation and performance measurements of the CDC’s Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) Operational Readiness Review findings.

As a CHCI-CVS Health Graduate Fellow, Michelle hopes to work closely with policymakers to implement and evaluate minority health interventions. She hopes to obtain a deeper understanding of the legislative and policy development process at the Federal level. After the fellowship, Michelle aims to serve as a policy analyst to monitor and analyze Federal, State, and local policies relating to the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, Medicaid, Medicare, and overall minority health policies.