Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program: Overview/FAQs
The application deadline for this year was 31 January 2013. Please check back later for information on future fellowships.
The Population Council offers a fellowship program to expand training opportunities for social scientists and biomedical researchers in the health and population fields (download a brochure about the program). This fellowship is geared toward developing-country nationals in the early stages of their careers, and to those with a demonstrated commitment to remaining in their home countries to build capacity in local institutions or returning home after working/studying abroad. The Council's Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program is a ten-year program that began in January 2007. The program offers a limited number of fellowships each year. The Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program allows fellows to work with experienced mentors in the Council's network of offices. Fellows work on projects in the following program areas:
This fellowship program is made possible through a generous grant from the Fred H. Bixby Foundation. Fred H. Bixby (1910–72) was a Californian rancher who provided in his will for the creation of the Fred H. Bixby Foundation to support activities related to issues of population.
Frequently asked questions
- When is the application deadline?
The deadline for applications was 31 January 2013. However, in order to allow sufficient time to be matched with a Population Council mentor and for a research proposal to be developed jointly with the mentor, inquiries for the fellowship should be made several weeks in advance of the application deadline.
- Do I need a Ph.D.? What if I am a master's-level candidate?
A Ph.D. is generally required to qualify for the fellowship. In some rare circumstances, a candidate with a master's-level and/or medical degree may qualify for the program, provided s/he has equivalent research and publication experience and is still in the early stages of her/his career. Please inquire with the fellowship coordinator to determine your individual eligibility.
- Am I eligible for the fellowship if I have not yet completed my degree?
Candidates who anticipate completing all requirements for a degree program before 30 June 2013 are eligible for this year's competition.
- What is the definition of "recent" graduate?
Recently awarded degrees typically will have been awarded between one and three years ago, but certainly within the past five years.
- May I apply for the fellowship if I am a US citizen?
No, only citizens of developing countries may apply for the fellowship.
- May I apply for the fellowship if I am a dual citizen or permanent resident?
Dual citizens and permanent residents of developed countries (e.g., Canada, European Union countries, United Kingdom, and United States) are not eligible to apply for the fellowship.
- How does an applicant demonstrate a commitment to remaining in or returning to a developing country after working/studying abroad?
The Bixby program is reserved specifically for researchers who intend to build capacity in developing countries after their fellowship training. Strong preference is given to candidates who plan to remain in or return to a developing country as part of their career path.
- May I complete the application in a language other than English?
Application materials must be submitted in English, and English proficiency is necessary in order to participate in the fellowship.
- May I still submit an application even if I don't have a specific Population Council mentor with whom to work?
No, all applicants must have the agreement of a staff mentor with whom they will collaborate before proceeding with the application. The research proposal section of the fellowship application will be prepared together with a Population Council mentor.
- How do I secure a Population Council mentor?
Interested candidates should first email the fellowship coordinator with their CV and experience, and the type of research they would like to pursue. The coordinator will then forward the inquiry materials of qualified candidates to appropriate mentors. Candidates may also look at the mentor bio pages on our website to identify which projects and research they are interested in collaborating with before contacting the coordinator.
- I sent my inquiry to the fellowship coordinator, but have not heard back about being selected by a mentor. What should I do?
Because mentors may only apply to the fellowship with one candidate per year, they must be selective in their agreement to support a fellow. Mentors are asked to decide on the candidate they will support before the end of December to ensure sufficient time to prepare a strong application. Candidates should remain in contact with the fellowship coordinator for updates about the progress of their inquiry.
- Does the proposed fellowship research need to be part of the mentor’s project portfolio?
Yes. One of the strengths of the Bixby program is the very close alignment between the research interests of proposed fellows and mentors. The project a fellow undertakes with her/his mentor will fall within the mentor's research domain rather than being an independent research agenda. Because the program does not provide additional research funding, any opportunities for primary research must fit within the mentor's currently funded projects. Projects focused on secondary data analysis may fit more broadly with mentor's research interests. The proposed fellowship research can often be a new line of inquiry within a mentor's project.
- If I am interested in working on a project about HIV, must I choose a mentor with an HIV and AIDS program affiliation?
Not necessarily. Much of the research and programs carried out by the Population Council span different program areas. A reproductive health project may have an HIV and AIDS component, and a program for young people may include reproductive health elements. Similarly, a mentor's research interests may bridge two or more programs. To learn more about a mentor's projects or research interests, visit his or her staff bio pages.
- Can the fellowship take place in any Population Council office?
The location of the fellowship is determined by the mentor's office of residence.
- What benefits are provided as part of the fellowship award?
The fellowship award consists of a monthly stipend for living expenses (the amount determined by the location of the fellowship and the fellow's experience level), health insurance, attendance at one conference per fellowship year, and an allowance for relocation, if necessary. Fellows also are provided with an office space, access to office support facilities, and the use of a laptop computer.
- May I participate in the fellowship on a part-time basis?
No, the program requires a full-time commitment by fellows. Other research, work, or studies cannot be undertaken during this time. Fellowships are awarded for up to two years, with the continuation of the fellowship in the second year contingent upon a successful evaluation and review of performance in the first year.
- What visa type does the Population Council sponsor for US-based fellows?
The Population Council sponsors J-1 visas through its Exchange Visitor Program.
- Does the Population Council offer scholarships for education or funding for projects at other organizations?
No, the Population Council's fellowships are awarded only for collaborative research in our network of international offices. There are no additional scholarship grants available.
- I applied for the fellowship previously but was not selected. May I apply again?
There is no restriction on re-applying for the Bixby program, provided the candidate is still eligible and there is a mentor available with compatible research interests
- Whom may I contact for more information?
Questions about the program may be directed to the fellowship coordinator at email@example.com. You may also read more about the program in a brochure.
Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program: Eligibility
The application deadline for this year was 31 January 2013. Please check back later for information on future fellowships.
Candidates must have recently completed (within the last five years)—or anticipate completing by 30 June 2013—a Ph.D. or equivalent degree in the social sciences, public health, or biomedical sciences. All applicants should have previous direct experience with either biomedical research, program research, or policy-relevant social science research (preferably with one or more peer-reviewed publications). Candidates with master's-level degrees in public health or a related field may be eligible only if they have considerable skills, background, experience, and peer-reviewed publications, including 2–3 years of relevant job experience post-master's.
Applicants must be legal citizens of a developing country and be proficient in English.
A key consideration in the selection of Fred H. Bixby fellows is the congruence of research interests between the applicant and a Population Council staff mentor in the office of residence. Some mentors have identified possible project ideas on which they feel they can collaborate with fellows. To identify potential mentors, see Mentors.
The term of appointment is two years, with the second year contingent upon a successful evaluation and review of performance in the first year. The fellowship is a full-time commitment, meaning no additional research, studies, or work may be pursued for the duration of the fellowship.
Awards consist of a monthly stipend, health insurance, an allowance for relocation expenses, and attendance at one international professional meeting (including travel) per year. The fellow is responsible for all local accommodations and living costs. Fellows will be provided with office space in the Council's office, plus access to office support facilities and a notebook computer.
Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program: Apply
The application deadline for this year was 31 January 2013. Please check back later for information on future fellowships.
Candidates are requested to contact the fellowship coordinator initially (see below). Please do not contact potential mentors directly, until the fellowship coordinator has provided instructions on how to do so.
Candidates interested in applying for a Fred H. Bixby Fellowship must first e-mail the fellowship coordinator with a letter indicating professional objectives and goals, a short statement about research interests and plans for the proposed fellowship period, as well as the name(s) of the mentor(s) (up to three) with whom they would like to work. They should also include a copy of their curriculum vitae. The fellowship coordinator will then initiate contact with the appropriate mentor(s) and instruct each candidate on how to proceed.
Candidates are asked to carefully review the information provided on possible mentor(s) before contacting the fellowship coordinator. Owing to the large volume of candidates, and because funding for the program is limited, mentors must be very selective regarding whom they will sponsor. Therefore, it is helpful to both mentors and fellows to find a partnership that is mutually beneficial regarding background and research interests. Each candidate must secure an agreement of support from a Population Council mentor before proceeding with a full application.
All correspondence between potential candidates and possible mentors must be copied to the fellowship coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Invitation to apply
If a staff mentor is interested in supporting a candidate's application, s/he will invite the candidate to apply. You may apply by completing the application (PDF) (Word) and sending application materials via email to the fellowship coordinator at email@example.com.
A completed application form includes the following materials:
- Personal data
- Visa information and documentation
- Personal statement (not exceeding 500 words)
- Research proposal documents, including a research statement (not exceeding 1,500 words) of study objectives and anticipated methodology that has been prepared in collaboration with the mentor; data sources to be used; and a timeline of research activities for the proposed fellowship period
- Three reference letters (in English) from individuals familiar with the applicant's work
- Curriculum vitae
- One example of written work (in English)
- Separately, as part of the application process, each mentor will be required to write a letter of support for her/his sponsored candidate, also stating the relevance of the research and suggestions for how this research may be used to further the Council's objectives
Please do not send materials directly to the mentor. Materials also may be sent via mail to:
Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program
One Dag Hammarskjold Plaza
New York, NY 10017 USA
Review of application
The Fred H. Bixby Fellowship selection committee will review the fellowship application and determine whether a candidate's research activities are compatible and in conjunction with the Council's goals and within the capacity of the staff mentor to support.
The committee will award fellowships based on program relevance and merit.
Notification of award
The applicant will receive notice of receipt of his/her application and will be notified of the committee's decision by mid-March 2012. Fellowships that have been awarded may begin any time between 1 May 2013 and 31 December 2013.
Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program: Mentors
Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program applicants may choose a mentor based on that mentor's location and program affiliation.
Candidates are requested to contact the fellowship coordinator initially. Please do not contact potential mentors directly, until the fellowship coordinator has provided instructions on how to do so.
Population Council program affiliation
- Sylvia Adebajo
- Babatunde Ahonsi
Please check back periodically for additions to the list of mentors.
Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program: Fellows
Since 2007, a total of fifteen fellows have participated in the Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Program. Selected fellows epitomize the goals and objectives of the program—to offer training opportunities to early career professionals from developing countries in order to build their capacity to continue as leaders in the population, health and development fields. After a successful application process, the Fred H. Bixby Fellowship Committee met 9–10 February 2011 to select fellows for the 2011 year. Four outstanding candidates were chosen, representing a range of research activities at the Population Council.
Grace Kumchulesi obtained her Ph.D. in Economics, from the University of Cape Town, South Africa in 2011. She is a national of Malawi and prior to her fellowship, she was a lecturer in the Economics Department at Chancellor College, University of Malawi. Grace's fellowship research will focus on HIV status and age at first marriage among women, and determinants of age at first marriage and marriage dissolution in Malawi. Her analysis, using longitudinal data from the Council's Malawi Schooling and Adolescent Study (MSAS), aims to establish the risk factors for HIV contraction among Malawian women, and in particular will assess if women's risk of HIV contraction varies by their age at first marriage or the length of time between first sex and first marriage. It will also examine the factors associated with early marriages and marriage dissolution in Malawi. Grace is mentored by Barbara Mensch in the Poverty, Gender, and Youth Program and her fellowship is based at the Population Council’s headquarters office in New York.
Dela Kusi-Appouh completed her Ph.D. in development sociology and social demography from Cornell University in 2012. She is currently based at the Population Council's Zambia office and is mentored by Paul Hewett and Karen Austrian. Dela's fellowship is focused on the Adolescent Girls Empowerment Program, a multi-year program based on the Safe Spaces model and aimed at providing 10,000 Zambian adolescent girls (12–19 years) with health, financial education, and life skills. Her research will concentrate on the randomized control trial design accompanying the programmatic activities and will analyze the relationships between locus of control, self-efficacy, agency and sexual and reproductive health outcomes. Dela is a citizen of Ghana.
Sam Wangila Wafula graduated with a Ph.D. in Population Studies from the University of Nairobi in 2012. Previously, he worked on several HIV programs with the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) with his last posting as a Project Manager in charge of Knowledge Management at the Kenya country office (2008–2012). Sam has research interests in trends and determinants of maternal and child health in resource poor settings, family planning and unmet need for family planning and the impact of HIV and AIDS on demographic processes. He is also keen on the impact of health initiatives on the vulnerable and poor populations. Under the mentorship of Benjamin Bellows in the Reproductive Health program at the Council's Nairobi office, Sam will focus on the application of regression decomposition techniques in accounting for the differences and contribution of RH output-based aid (OBA) voucher and Baby Monitor initiatives among the target population. Sam will also apply his knowledge in event history analysis to shed light on the timing of sexual and reproductive health services among clients in the intervention and control sites of the Council's projects in Kenya, his home country.
Eliud Wekesa completed his Ph.D. in Demography/Population Studies at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in 2012. He is interested in policy relevant research on issues around integrating sexual and reproductive health (SRH) and HIV services, and in improving the health of slum populations. Eliud's Ph.D. thesis was on the SRH of people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) in Nairobi slums in which their access to and use of SRH and HIV services is an integral component. Previously, he worked at the Africa Population and Health Research Centre (APHRC) in Nairobi on a longitudinal study that examines population and health issues in Nairobi slums, where he was responsible for coordination and implementation of study's field and office operations. Eliud's fellowship will focus on understanding the benefits, barriers and opportunities of different integrated models to increase the range, quality and use of SRH and HIV services among PLWHA and youth in urban slums; and on translating and communicating research findings to policy and program decision makers through involvement of and dissemination to key stakeholders. Eliud is mentored by Harriet Birungi and Ian Askew in the Reproductive Health program at the Population Council's Nairobi office. Eliud is a citizen of Kenya.
Weber Beringui Feitosa completed his Ph.D. in animal reproduction at the University of São Paulo in 2010. He is a citizen of Brazil and, during his doctoral studies, he spent a year as a visiting scholar at the Veterinary and Animal Science Department, University of Massachusetts-Amherst. Weber's fellowship is situated within the Reproductive Health program at the Population Council's Center for Biomedical Research. He is mentored by Patricia Morris to study the role of post-translational changes in the sperm proteome. The focus of his project is to determine the particular head and midpiece sperm molecules that are modified by protein modifiers called SUMO and perform the initial characterization of the functional consequences of such protein modifications on sperm structure and spindle formation during fertilization. Weber's project relating to fertility regulation will also allow him to participate in the discovery of novel strategies for development of safe and reversible male contraceptives.
Update: Dr. Feitosa will complete his fellowship 1 May 2013
Pearl Kyei completed her Ph.D. in demography from the University of Pennsylvania in 2010. She is being mentored by Barbara Mensch in the Poverty, Gender, and Youth program at the Population Council's New York headquarters. During her fellowship, Pearl will study the relationship between schooling progress and adolescent outcomes in rural Malawi. Her research will analyze the effects of lagging behind grade for age on achievement, educational attainment and adolescent behavior and will assess the impact of school quality and household characteristics on grade progression using data from the Council's Malawi Schooling and Adolescent Study (MSAS). She will also extend her dissertation research on the pathways through which female headship positively affects adolescent schooling outcomes in sub-Saharan Africa. Pearl is a citizen of Ghana and her research interests lie in family demography, educational assessment in developing countries, and gender inequality in the labor market. Update: Dr. Kyei will complete her fellowship 18 September 2013
A. Louise Ouattara obtained her Ph.D. in biology and virology in 2010 at the Claude Bernard University and BioMerieux Emerging Pathogens Laboratory in Lyon, France. While enrolled for her Msc. in health and drug engineering at Joseph Fourier University in Grenoble (2004–2006), she also obtained a Magisterium in biotechnology, health, and the creation of enterprises from the Higher Trade School of Grenoble, allowing her to acquire technical knowledge as well as economic and management skills. Louise is a citizen of Côte d'Ivoire, and her fellowship is situated within the HIV and AIDS program at the Population Council's Center for Biomedical Research. She is mentored by Natalia Teleshova to study impact of zinc in the mucosa during vaginal HIV/SIV transmission. Understanding how the body responds to viral exposure to allow infection is essential to designing successful prevention strategies, and Louise's project can help inform microbicide development to curb the spread of HIV worldwide.
Update: Dr. Ouattara will complete her fellowship 1 May 2013
Edouard N. Akono obtained his Ph.D. in biochemistry (male reproductive toxicology and pharmacology) at the University of Yaoundé I in 2009 and is a citizen of Cameroon. Edouard's fellowship is within the Reproductive Health program at the Population Council’s Center for Biomedical Research. He is mentored by Patricia Morris to study the reproductive toxicity of prevalent environmental chemicals. His studies use Sertoli cells, which are isolated from the testis of experimental rats, and his research shows that the chemical bisphenol A (BPA)—a globally prevalent chemical that is commonly found in many plastic items—has a potent disrupting influence on these cells. Edouard’s study will bring important new information on the effects of such estrogen-like environmental chemicals to the field of global reproductive health.
Update: Dr. Nantia Akono completed his fellowship 26 June 2012
Cecilia Calderon holds a Ph.D. in demography from the University of Pennsylvania (2009), a master's in economics from the Universidad Nacional de La Plata in Argentina (2003), and an undergraduate degree in economics from the Universidad Catolica de La Plata (2000). Cecilia is a citizen of Argentina, and her fellowship is currently situated at the Population Council’s headquarters in New York. She is mentored by Kelly Hallman within the Poverty, Gender, and Youth program. Cecilia's fellowship is focused on running an impact evaluation of the Siyakha Nentsha ("Building with Young People") program in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, a longitudinal study that works with young males and females in 10th and 11th grades. Her research will explore how, and to what extent, HIV risk behaviors interact with financial literacy, sexual behaviors, and gender attitudes. She also will analyze the relationship between cognitive abilities and two sets of outcomes: educational trajectory and sexual behaviors.
Update: Dr. Calderon completed her fellowship 6 June 2012
Satvika Chalasani completed her Ph.D. in demography and sociology from The Pennsylvania State University in 2010. She is currently based at the Population Council’s headquarters in New York, working with Barbara Mensch and Mark Montgomery. During her fellowship, Satvika will examine multiple dimensions of the lives of adolescents utilizing longitudinal data from the Population Council’s Malawi Schooling and Adolescent Study. With Mensch’s guidance, she is exploring the links between adolescent labor force participation, schooling, and sexual health in Malawi. With Montgomery, she is studying migration among young girls in developing countries, especially labor- and education-related mobility in Malawi. She also has an interest in evidence-based programming for adolescents in Africa. Satvika is a citizen of India.
Update: Dr. Chalasani completed her fellowship 30 November 2012
Yongmei Huang obtained her M.D. in 2000 from Tongji Medical College of Huazhong University of Science & Technology in China, her home country. She completed her Ph.D. in obstetrics and gynecology in 2008 from the Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine. Before joining the Population Council, she worked at the International Peace Maternal & Child Health Hospital and the Shanghai Institute of Family Planning Technique Instruction. Yongmei's research interests focus on reproductive health and unintended pregnancy prevention, especially for vulnerable populations. Yongmei's fellowship is situated within the Reproductive Health program at the Population Council's Center for Biomedical Research. She is mentored by Ruth Merkatz and Régine Sitruk-Ware and is involved in the clinical trial of the Council's contraceptive vaginal ring. Currently, Yongmei's fellowship research is focused on the microbiological safety of the Nestorone®/ethinyl estradiol contraceptive vaginal ring (NES/EE CVR) used for one year to evaluate whether the presence of the NES/EE CVR increases the risk of vaginal infection; and on the acceptability of the progesterone vaginal ring (PVR) in India, which includes an acceptability interview among users enrolled in the Phase 3 clinical trial, a willingness-to-participate study among potential users, and a health care providers' knowledge and attitudes study.
Update: Dr. Huang completed her fellowship 23 September 2012
Shagun Sabarwal completed her Sc.D. in public health with a specialization in social epidemiology at Harvard University in 2010. During her fellowship, Shagun is examining marital violence among adolescent girls and young women in India, her home country, as well as the determinants and correlates of perpetration of such violence from men's perspectives. One key focus of her research is to advance the literature around the relationships between women's autonomy in rural India and risk of sexual and physical violence within marriage. In addition, Shagun is exploring the correlates of sexual and reproductive health needs of youth in India. The goal of her research is to generate insights into the risks and vulnerabilities faced by young married women in India to help programs develop the best strategies for dealing with violence and other adverse health conditions faced by young women within marriage. She is working under the mentorship of K.G. Santhya at the Population Council’s New Delhi office within the Poverty, Gender, and Youth program.
Update: Dr. Sabarwal completed her fellowship 15 November 2012
Sayed Bakry completed his Ph.D. in experimental embryology at Al-Azhar University in Cairo in 2005 and is a citizen of Egypt. Currently, he is the director of the Center for Genetic Engineering at Al-Azhar University. He is collaborating with Narender Kumar and Régine Sitruk-Ware at the Population Council's Center for Biomedical Research, and his fellowship is situated within the Reproductive Health program. Sayed's fellowship research is based on evaluating the developmental and reproductive toxicity effects of progestins on fetal abnormalities in rats, and on developing an injectable method of contraception using Nestorone®. The goal of this study is to improve the safety of injectable methods of contraception widely used in many areas of the world, especially when used during early pregnancy.
Update: Dr. Bakry completed his fellowship 6 September 2011
Terence Henares completed his Ph.D. in chemistry in 2008 from the University of Hyogo in Japan and is a citizen of the Philippines. Before joining the Population Council, he was a postdoctoral researcher at the Graduate School of Engineering at Osaka Prefecture University in Japan. Terence's fellowship is situated within the HIV and AIDS program at the Population Council's Center for Biomedical Research. He is mentored by Thomas Zydowsky and Melissa Robbiani to contribute to advancing the Council's microbicide research. Terence’s research is focused on the development of novel gel and extended-release products that contain MIV-150 or related non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs), carrageenan, and/or Zn2+; and on the development and validation of bioanalytical methods for the quantitative measurement of MIV-150, MIV-160, and MIV-170 and their metabolites/degradation products in different formulations.
Update: Dr. Henares completed his fellowship 24 June 2011
Y. Abisola Noah obtained her M.D. in 2008 from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and her Ph.D. and M.H.S. from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in 2009. With a multi-disciplinary background in medicine, health systems, health finance, evaluation, refugee/disaster health, and women’s health, she has worked in a variety of settings in Namibia, Nigeria, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Focusing on women’s health issues in the developing world, her research on traditional practices that may affect the health of women and girls has included an examination of acute obstetric complications, men’s and women’s attitudes, and women’s autonomy as related to female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C) in sub-Saharan countries. She is being mentored by Placide Tapsoba and is situated within the Reproductive Health program at the Population Council's Accra office. Continuing her dissertation work, Abisola is generating and disseminating new information on FGM/C that may be useful in stemming the practice (Burkina Faso, Nigeria). She also is performing an analysis of data obtained from a USAID-funded FRONTIERS project on gender-based violence in South Africa. Expanding her reproductive health portfolio, Abisola is evaluating an intervention designed to integrate family planning into other sexual and reproductive health services at the health-provider level in Ghana. And, in collaboration with the Ghana Health Service/Ministry of Health and UNFPA, she is facilitating the development of a national action plan on female condom programming.
Update: Dr. Noah completed her fellowship 30 November 2011
Lung Vu obtained his M.D. in 2001 from Hanoi Medical School in Vietnam. He completed his Ph.D. in international health and development at the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine at Tulane University. Lung's public health career began in his home country of Vietnam, focusing on reproductive health and HIV and AIDS prevention, care, and treatment, especially for vulnerable populations. He is continuing his training with involvement in the implementation and evaluation of sound HIV prevention programs, especially for MSM (men who have sex with men) communities and other vulnerable populations. Lung's fellowship is situated within the HIV and AIDS program, with a focus on the Population Council's MSM portfolio in sub-Saharan Africa. His mentor is Waimar Tun at the Council's office in Washington, DC.
Update: Dr. Vu completed his fellowship 31 August 2011
Ashish Bajracharya completed his Ph.D. in policy analysis and management at Cornell University in 2008. During his fellowship, Ashish is examining early marriage among adolescent girls in Nepal, particularly by exploring its correlates and determinants as well as contemporary trends. One key focus of his research is adolescent livelihoods and their potential influence on the timing of marriages. This research is aimed at advancing the literature on early marriage in Nepal, Ashish’s home country, and also at informing program and policy strategies as Nepal transitions out of a decade-long conflict and undergoes significant social and political changes. He is working under the mentorship of Sajeda Amin at the Population Council’s headquarters in New York under the Poverty, Gender, and Youth program.
Update: Dr. Bajracharya completed his fellowship 13 October 2010.
Erica Soler-Hampejsek completed her Ph.D. in demography at the University of Pennsylvania in 2008. Erica has experience working in Mexico, her home country, as well as in Guatemala and Malawi. She is mentored by Barbara Mensch and Kelly Hallman within the Poverty, Gender, and Youth Program at the Population Council's headquarters in New York. Erica is studying how schooling experience relates to the timing of sexual initiation, marriage, and childbearing, as well as the differences observed in the transition through schooling by gender and ethnicity. Under the mentorship of Barbara Mensch, Erica is examining the effects of several dimensions of schooling in Malawi on a selection of critical adolescent transitions. She is expanding her research on gender differences in the schooling experience to differences between indigenous and nonindigenous populations in Latin America, with guidance from Kelly Hallman, focusing on the effects of availability of bilingual education (Spanish and indigenous) in Mexico.
Update: Dr. Soler-Hampejsek completed her fellowship 24 August 2010.
S. Chandrasekhar completed his Ph.D. in economics from The Pennsylvania State University in 2004 and is a citizen of India. Currently, he is on leave from the Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research in Mumbai, India, where he is an assistant professor. He is working with Mark Montgomery at the Population Council’s headquarters in New York under the Poverty, Gender, and Youth program. Chandrasekhar analyzes data sets collected by National Sample Survey Organisation, India, in order to focus on the following issues: multiple dimensions of urban poverty, migration and urbanization, construction of urban poverty lines and measures of urban poverty, the relationship between asset indexes and consumption expenditure, and intra-city and inter-city differences in utilization of health care.
Update: Dr. Chandrasekhar completed his fellowship 30 June 2009.
Asmaa Elbadawy completed her Ph.D. in economics from McMaster University, Canada, in March 2009. Her research interests lie in the area of economics of education and the economics of gender, marriage, and the family, with a geographic focus on the Middle East, specifically Egypt, her home country. She holds a master's degree in economics from the University of Waterloo in Canada, and has done extensive research in the area of education in Egypt, particularly on tutoring. Asmaa was mentored by Ragui Assaad in the Population Council’s WANA office in Cairo under the Poverty, Gender, and Youth program. Currently she is mentored by Rania Roushdy, and her fellowship is situated within the Data Analysis and Economic Development Unit in the Cairo office. While at the Council, her research has focused on estimating the effects of migration and remittances on child schooling and work, and on women’s status in Egypt. She also is involved in evaluating the impact of Ishraq, a second-chance program for out-of-school girls in Upper Egypt.
Update: Dr. Elbadawy completed her fellowship 14 August 2009.
Francis Obare Onyango finished his Ph.D. in demography at the University of Pennsylvania in 2007. Francis previously was a research trainee at the African Population and Health Research Center in Nairobi, Kenya, where he worked on a number of research projects, including the Adolescent Safe Motherhood Study in South Nyanza, the Nairobi Urban Health Equity Gauge, and the Nairobi Urban Demographic Surveillance System. He returned to his home country to work in the Population Council’s Nairobi office, where he is being mentored by Jill Keesbury and Harriet Birungi. Francis’s research interests include health and morbidity in sub-Saharan Africa with specific focus on inequalities in access to maternal and child health care services, adolescent sexual and reproductive health, and HIV and AIDS, including the response to and the role of voluntary HIV/AIDS counseling and testing. He is working with Jill Keesbury on a Kenyan study on emergency contraception as a bridge to voluntary counseling and testing services and with Harriet Birungi on the Council’s family planning studies in Uganda. He is situated within the Council's Reproductive Health program.
Update: Dr. Obare Onyango completed his fellowship 30 September 2009.
Yunhui Zhang obtained her Ph.D. in 2004 from Fudan University in Shanghai. She has a background in public health, and her research interests focus on environmental health science in China, where she is a citizen. Currently Yunhui is on leave from her position as an associate professor at the School of Public Health at Fudan University. Yunhui’s research at the Population Council is based on evaluating the male reproductive toxicity of di (2-ethylhexyl) phthalate (DEHP), which is commonly found in medical devices and used in flexible plastics. She is mentored by Renshan Ge at the Council's Center for Biomedical Research in New York, conducting both animal and human-based studies to estimate the antiandrogenic effects of DEHP during prenatal and sexual maturation. This work is situated within the Reproductive Health program.
Update: Dr. Zhang completed her fellowship 15 June 2009.