Regional Steering Committee Member Spotlight: Jeneane McDonald

Jeneane McDonald, MPH

Jeneane has been involved with the Midwestern Public Health Training Center (MPHTC) since at least 2009. In her role, she supports MPH students across the country as they plan and execute their culminating experiences (also known as the Integrative Learning Experience).  These projects are an opportunity for them to demonstrate public health competencies and transition into the public health workforce. She says she feels incredibly rewarded to mentor them as they plan and pivot into their careers. Jeneane also works with an array of public health organizations to host these students and assures that the ILE projects result in meaningful products such as white papers, grant proposals, community health assessments or health improvement plans, data analysis or program evaluations.

She believes that MPHTC has niche expertise and resources that support entire public health systems to be more effective.  From on-demand training to amplifying others’ public health education efforts, “MPHTC is a trusted partner”. It not only fosters robust connections across the public health network in Iowa but within our entire region of Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas.

How does Jeneane envision public health? She says public health practice is a scientific, evidence-based endeavor; however it also requires creativity in that practitioners must connect the sometimes seemingly unconnected. In her words: “I see this inter-play in my cross-sector work and wish to explore this as an area of action research. I see the potential opportunity to equip public health practitioners and our cross-sector partners with the strategic skills to engage in our shared work. If we can bridge our jargon, identify co-wins, bring our respective professional skill sets and develop new skills such as systems-thinking and change management, we can address some of our intractable public health issues and transform Iowa’s public health system.”

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