IPCR Alum Researches Health Impact of Immigration Policy in Arizona

By Purnell T. Cropper | August 31, 2010

By Sarah R. Schwartz ’10

Former International Peace and Conflict Resolution (IPCR) major Julie Tippens ’06M recently relocated to Tuscon, Ariz., to research the impact of immigration policies on the wellbeing of migrant and refugee populations. This research is part of her work at the University of Arizona’s Zuckerman College of Public Health, where she is earning a doctorate in Public Health Policy.

Tippens, who is an Elected Fellow of the Albert Schweitzer Foundation and a member of Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health, initially was drawn to Arcadia’s IPCR program because of the practicum requirements, which she found to be one of the most rewarding aspects of her education. She participated in a field study in Northern Ireland to learn about the conflict from a variety of stakeholders, ranging from academic experts to the local police force.

“It was an invaluable learning experience to supplement classroom knowledge by engaging individuals working on a variety of peace-building activities in a post-conflict setting,” she says.

She also completed an internship with UNICEF’s Roll Back Malaria Campaign in Kenya before graduation. Tippens’ hands-on experience provided her with precious insight, transforming her values and her life. “Seeing the positive impact of policy to promote and safeguard the health of an entire region is what prompted me to pursue a career in public health,” she says.

After graduating from Arcadia, Tippens moved on to earn a Master of Public Health in Community Health at Temple University, where she focused on increasing access to health information and services among migrant populations.

Once she earns her doctorate, Tippens hopes to establish a program that integrates peace-building efforts into health delivery and relief models that displaced populations.

“Most importantly, I hope to mentor young students or professionals. I received amazing mentorship from Alex Otieno, Sociology Instructor, and I understand how important it is as an emerging professional to discuss ideas freely with someone who is established in the field,” she says. “To this day, I can e-mail Alex with questions pertaining to research or my career. It would be an honor to be in a position to pay it forward one day.”