The Global Health Student Council, working in partnership with the Center for Innovation in Global Health, is composed of undergraduate and graduate students with diverse backgrounds committed to strengthening the global health community on campus.
The Stanford Global Health Student Council is an interdisciplinary student organization at Stanford University dedicated to strengthening the global health community on campus. Composed of undergraduate and graduate students, the Council works in close partnership with the Stanford University Center for Innovation in Global Health (CIGH), Stanford’s premier global health research, education, and mentorship center.
Blending education with meaningful action, the Global Health Student Council’s mission is three-fold. Seeking to engage students and scholars from all parts of campus on global health issues, the Council seeks to create community among faculty, staff, and students interested in global health. To better inform young leaders, stakeholders, and the public about critical global health challenges, the Council aims to facilitate interdisciplinary learning about global health, both in and out of the classroom. Lastly, to provide needed experience and practical knowledge to future leaders in the field, the Council works to connect students to opportunities focused on underserved communities locally and abroad.
A diverse and interdisciplinary group, the Council is composed of undergraduates and graduates, premedical students, economists, biologists, and engineers — all with a shared interest in and passion for ensuring every single human being, no matter who they are or where they are from, has access to affordable and quality healthcare. We welcome any and all Stanford students to join our team, as we strive to include as many perspectives and voices as possible in our effort to improve health for all.
To get involved, contact one of the GHSC leaders at the emails below:
Shuvi Jha, firstname.lastname@example.org
Abhi Kumar, email@example.comFollow us on Instagram
Shuvi Jha (’24) is a senior studying Computer Science. Her interest in global health stems from her childhood experiences living in India where she witnessed firsthand how the forces of industrialization, globalization, and colonization impact BIPOC populations. Within global health, Shuvi’s interests include disease ecology, integrative medicine, and incorporating intergenerational trauma with notions of health and wellbeing among BIPOC communities. In her free time, Shuvi enjoys writing, thrifting & going on long car rides.
Sofia Pesantez (’24) is a Senior majoring in Human Biology with a concentration on Global Public Health and Anatomy, as well as completing a Coterm in Epidemiology and Clinical Research. She is from Hewlett, New York and her interest in global health and immigrant health advocacy stems from her background, having immigrant parents from Colombia and Ecuador. She volunteers at Cardinal Free Clinics as a Spanish Interpreter, and this past summer she went to Oaxaca on the BOSP Community Health in Oaxaca trip, learning a lot about the healthcare system in Oaxaca, and bringing lessons back to share with her communities at Stanford. She hopes to continue immersing herself in learning experiences that can enrich her knowledge of global health and all of its intersections, so that when she becomes a doctor herself, that she can provide the most culturally competent care possible for her patients.
Auddithio Nag (’25) is a sophomore from Dhaka, Bangladesh. Having grown up in a developing nation all his life, Auddithio plans to leverage tech to improve access to and quality of healthcare systems in resource-constrained settings around the globe.
Tom Quach (he/him) (’24) is a senior at Stanford University pursuing a B.S. in Biology and B.A. in Communication with an honors thesis in Science, Technology, Society. He is passionate in cultivating innovative solutions to enhance community health, at a local and global scale. During his free time, Tom enjoys hanging out with family and friends, building legos and exploring the California coast!
Sarika Lansberg (’25) is a Junior from Palo Alto, California, majoring in Human Biology. On campus, she’s involved in the Stanford Premedical Association as a Health Advocacy Committee President and Financial Officer. Academically, she is particularly interested in refugee and migrant health, child health, and mental health. Off campus, she works as an EMT at a Residential Treatment Center for Addiction. Outside of academics and extracurriculars, she loves to figure skate, crochet, and spend time with friends & family.
Period Equity Committee
Meet Ritwik (’25), a rising junior majoring in Psychology. He is interested in intersectional advocacy and research, specifically on the topics of eco-anxiety and impacts of SES on mental health outcomes. Ritwik serves as a co-leader of the Period Equity Committee, a group dedicated to advocacy aimed at combating period poverty. The concerns around period poverty lie in a lack of access to products, insufficient education, and a lack of facilities — which the group plans to tackle.
Joy Molloy ('25)
Campus Engagement Committee
I (’25) grew up visiting my family on the Caribbean island of Dominica every summer and the older I got, the more I noticed health disparities on the island. My Caribbean background has catapulted my interest in global health and has taught me that adequate healthcare is a right that not all people have access to. In the future, I hope to play an instrumental role in ensuring that people within and outside the United States have efficient healthcare resources readily accessible to them.
Co-Lead for Period Equity Committee
Meet Rithika (’25), a rising junior pursuing Design with a specialization in the Human Behavior + Multi-stakeholder Research track. Her passion lies in the intersection of public health, design, and policy. Within our club, Rithika serves as a co-leader of the Period Equity Committee, a group dedicated to advocacy aimed at combating period poverty. Period poverty, a pressing concern, entails the insufficient access to menstrual hygiene products, proper sanitary facilities, and essential menstrual health education.
Campus Engagement Committee
Dena Kumsa (’26) is a sophomore from San Francisco, CA majoring in Human Biology with a concentration in neurological/behavioral science and a prospective minor in Art History. Her interest in global health traverses the topics of neurological disparity and epigenetic determinants of health within underserved communities, most notably in African/African American populations. Aside from academics, Dena is involved in research that tackles multiple sclerosis from a glial standpoint, volunteers with a local nonprofit in navigating targets for improved growth among Cameroon’s youth, and is a committee officer in Stanford’s Premedical Association. Her free time consists of swimming, thrifting, cafe-hopping, attempting art, and watching horror movies.
Bennett Liu (’24) is a senior at Stanford University studying computer science. Bennett is originally from Denver, CO where he enjoys the outdoors! He is really interested in mental health in global settings and how technology can be leveraged to expand access to mental health resources. In his free time, he enjoys surfing, plays tennis on the club tennis team for Stanford, and can give a pretty good haircut. As part of the council, Bennett hopes think about global health at a local level.Contact Bennett Liu
Natalie Milan (‘24) is a Human Biology major who is committed to reducing global disparities in reproductive healthcare and fighting for education and food systems reform. She is pursuing a career as an OB/GYN and hopes to utilize her medical and Spanish skills to provide compassionate and culturally-conscious care to survivors of human trafficking in Latin America. Natalie is a Research Assistant at the GSE, exploring causes and effects of college non-completion, as well as a Peer Writing Tutor at the Hume Center. She is currently taking a gap year to support the “food as medicine” movement by interning for a medically-tailored meal service, grant-writing for a community garden, and volunteering at a sustainable coffee farm in Costa Rica. In her free time, Natalie enjoys hiking in the redwoods, watercolor painting, and practicing yoga.
Emma Charity, (’25), is an undecided major interested in creating equitable systems. Her interest in global health stems from her work in high school researching racial diversity in genetic prostate cancer studies. She hopes to continue this type of work in fields of tech, global poverty, and researching social determinants of health.
Sarah Sophie Schwarzhappel
Sarah Sophie Schwarzhappel is from Vienna, Austria. She is passionate about neuroscience, literature, and the intersection between social justice, health, and art. Within global health, she is currently interested in reducing health access disparities for immigrant communities and exploring how art can help to appreciate diversity and connect in empathic care. Sarah Sophie speaks German and Spanish. Outside of classes and research, she likes playing the flute or the saxophone, writing poetry or short stories, and exploring theatre and film.
Anna Hudson is majoring in Bioengineering with the long-term goal of working at the intersection of neuroscience, CS, and health to limit the long-term consequences of ACEs. She spends time volunteering with youth education, science outreach, and equity especially for low-income people. She also plays the french horn and loves cooking and drinking coffee.
Tenzin Namgyal (‘24) is a Public Policy and Anthropology double major from Queens, New York. Outside of the classroom, she is a part of Stanford Housing Justice and works at the Women’s Community Center on campus. Within the field of global health, her interests lie in food security, reproductive health, and studying the disparities in the healthcare system. In her free time, Tenzin enjoys thrifting, trying out new restaurants, reading, and spending time with her family and friends.
Jessica Balbin (24′) is a junior majoring in Chemistry and minoring in Global Health. She created and leads Stanford’s Pre-Medical association’s Health Advocacy Committee , is an active volunteer and officer within the Cardinal Free Clinics, and works with Stanford’s El Centro Chicano y Latino to help create space for the chicano and Latinx community. Jessica hopes to bring to light the myriad of social and health issues that disproportionately impact marginalized communities, and above all strives to help empower the voices of these community members.Contact Jessica Balbin
Ishita Verma (’25) is a sophomore from San Jose, California and is a prospective biology major. She love research and has been working at a Helms Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery lab investigating cleft palate repair. She also loves podcasting and is intern for Stanford Medcast, where she plans and edits episodes. Ishita was introduced to global affairs and relations in high school, and since then has developed a particular interest in global health. She loves learning about these issues and has taken several courses taught by the Stanford Global Health department. She’s very excited to translate her learning into action and take steps towards bettering health with this club. In her free time, Ishita is a big reader. She particularly loves novels and memoirs.Contact Ishita Verma
Ella Gray (’23) is a Human Biology major with a concentration in gender, disease, and public health. She is especially interested in alleviating global health disparities exacerbated by inequitable disease spread, morbidity, and mortality. In her free time, she enjoys singing with her a cappella group, The Harmonics, and watching reality TV on Netflix.
Nahome Hagos (‘24) is a freshmen from North Jersey. He was originally born in Ethiopia, but immigrated to the United States with his family at a very young age. He is currently undeclared, but is interested in majoring in either Human Biology or Bioengineering. His interests within Global Health lie in infectious disease immunology and response as well as increasing healthcare accessibility for immigrant, minority and/or low income populations. Outside of classes, he is involved in a research laboratory studying the mechanisms of clinical immunity to malaria. In his free time, he enjoys playing basketball, reading and watching anime.
Dean Tran (‘24) is from Morgan Hill, California. He is interested in Neurobiology and Biocomputation. His passions in Global Health lie in healthcare accessibility and education for marginalized communities. Outside of classes and research, Dean loves spending time with his friends, watching movies, and playing basketball.
Allie Westley is majoring in Human Biology. She is planning on concentrating in Epidemiology and Global Women’s and Children’s Health. Outside of the classroom, she does research on women’s self-help groups and health outcomes in low- and middle-income countries. She is particularly interested in sexual and reproductive health. Other things she is involved in on campus including counseling at the Bridge Peer Counseling Center, counseling at SHPRC (Sexual Health Peer Resource Center), SWIM (Stanford Women in Medicine), and Stanford Women’s Club Soccer!
Shriti Parajuli (’24) is a junior studying Human Biology at Stanford. Living in Kathmandu, Nepal; Hattiesburg, Mississippi; Reno, Nevada; and Yuma, Arizona, and getting to involve herself in her local communities has largely driven her interests in global health and education equity. She is involved with the Cardinal Free Clinics, Little Libraries, and the Asian American Activities Center (A3C). Within global health, her interests are in maternal and children’s health, equity, and epidemiology. Outside of class, she can often be spotted with friends in the Couchroom of the A3C!Contact Shriti Parajuli
Maya Somers (‘24) is an undergraduate from Seattle, Washington and is planning on majoring in Human Biology. Her interests in global health include the immunology and epidemiology of infectious diseases and looking at the social determinants of health to promote equitable health outcomes and access to healthcare. Outside of classes, Maya is involved in research in a translational immunology lab, the Bridge Peer Counseling Center, Stanford in Government, and Stanford Women in Medicine. In her free time, she enjoys hiking, playing tennis, attempting photography, and meeting up friends to drink (lots of) coffee.
Caitlynn Tran, ’25, is a sophomore studying Chemistry, and has gained a particular interest in Asian and Asian American health having grown up in the Bay Area. She is involved with the Join Jade movement through Team HBV, which focuses on bringing awareness to the racial health disparity of hepatitis B in the Asian and Pacific Islander community. She hopes to increase access to quality healthcare and inform others of global health disparities as a volunteer at the Cardinal Free Clinic and a member of the GHSC.Contact Caitlynn Tran
Anoushka (’24) is a junior majoring in Human Biology and minoring in Human Rights. Her interest in global health stems from her passion for medical ethics in the context of refugee and disability rights in underserved communities. She has worked at UCSF’s Health and Human Rights Initiative, where she volunteered at a refugee clinic that provided pro bono forensic medical evaluations to asylum seekers. This coming academic year, she is leading a new student organization called Stanford Association for Medical Ethics (SAME), and will continue volunteering at Ravenswood Clinic in East Palo Alto. Anoushka hopes to use research, outreach, community partnership, and student passion to positively impact the space of global health equity worldwide.Contact Anoushka Rao
Lexy Tran (’25) is a freshman from Morgan Hill, California, majoring in Science, Technology, and Society. On campus, she’s involved in stem cell/organoid/cancer research at the medical school, public health organizations including United Students for Veterans’ Health and Team HBV, and the Intersect Journal of Science, Technology, and Society. She is particularly interested in understanding how social, economic, and policy factors interact and impact global health. Outside of academics and extracurriculars, she loves to cook & bake, watch movies & TV shows, listen to music & curate Spotify playlists, vibe to old school hip hop, spend time with friends & family, and swim/hike/do anything outdoors.Contact Lexy Tran
Gurmenjit Bahia (‘24) is a sophomore studying Biology with a concentration in biochemistry/biophysics from Modesto, CA. She particularly enjoys research revolving around genetic editing technology and healthcare disparities. Additionally, she is involved with the Stanford Premedical Association Health Policy Committee, undergraduate senate, and a group advocating for First-generation and/or low-income students known as FLIP. She aspires to become an Orthopedic surgeon and go into global surgery. Aside from her academics, she loves nature, gardening, and long walks.Contact Gurmenjit Bahia
Harleen Kaur (‘22) majored in Anthropology. Born in New York and raised by immigrant parents in Ohio, Connecticut, India, Illinois, and most recently Indiana, she has seen various ways health is shaped by spaces, both geographical and social, that you inhabit. At Stanford, she was a member of various cultural spaces, including South Asian Society, Sikh Students’ Association, and Stanford Bhangra. She volunteered with SHAR(ED) and a research assistant in the Intimate Partner Violence Lab. Harleen’s global health interests include narratives of addiction and circuits of care within Panjabi communities, intergenerational trauma and its manifestation with health and wellbeing, and gender based violence within immigrant communities.
Originally from Miami, Florida, Abel Gonzalez ’22 studied Biology (Microbes and Immunity) on the pre-med track. He’s interested in understanding the pathophysiology of communicable diseases, reforming mental health frameworks, and developing healthcare safety nets in conflict regions. He was involved in Cardinal Free Clinics, in research with Stanford Med’s Office of Community Engagement, and interns for Genentech and the NIH. Abel loves to try out new restaurants, to explore the Bay and to visit his Berkeley boo. He loves fashion, anime, cooking, plants, drag, skincare, and traveling.
Dawson Sproul (‘22) majored in Human Biology. He was born and raised in a small town of 2,000 people in rural Kansas. At Stanford, he was a member of both Stanford Speaker’s Bureau as well as 5-Sure on Foot. His global health interests include water sanitation, infectious disease, and increasing access to health care for underrepresented communities, which he works to do as a lab assistant for the Pacific Free Clinic. Dawson hopes to educate the Stanford community about the broad field of global health and provide them with an outlet to explore their interests as well as discover new global health passions of his own.