July 5, 2022, 6:30 AM HST
* Updated July 4, 2:30 PM
Sarah Freeman, a food systems specialist with the Department of Research and Development, has been accepted into the 2022 Bloomberg American Health Initiative Fellowship at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the County of Hawaiʻi announced.
Freeman is one of 50 people awarded a full scholarship as a Bloomberg Fellow to pursue a Master of Public Health. The Bloomberg American Health Initiative Fellowship aims to create experts to combat the nation’s five most critical health challenges: addiction and overdose, adolescent health, environmental challenges, obesity and the food system, and violence.
As a food system specialist, she focuses on improving Hawaiʻi’s food systems by working with government and community-initiated projects to foster a sustainable and thriving Hawaiʻi Island.
“We are proud to support Sarah through this incredible opportunity in hopes that she will return home with added skillsets to better serve our community,” Mayor Mitch Roth stated in a news release. “Her excellent work for the County as a collaborative organizer in food systems made her the perfect candidate for the Bloomberg Fellowship. We look forward to her return and wish her the best throughout her fellowship. Food security is a key component of a sustainable community, and we will remain committed to bolstering production islandwide.”
Freeman has a Bachelor of Science in Conservation and Resource Studies from UC Berkeley, concentrating on urban agriculture, conflict resolution, and city repair, the county’s news release stated.
Of the five crucial health challenges facing the nation, Freeman will be focusing on the obesity and food system challenges throughout her master’s program.
Freeman will continue to be supported by the County of Hawaiʻi Department of Research and Development through her studies and will continue to help the community after she receives her degree. In addition, the skills and tools she will gain from her Master of Public Health and focus on obesity and the food system will aid her continued work as a food system specialist for the County of Hawaiʻi.