Dr. Alexandra Marshall, an associate professor at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS), has gifted $50,000 to the the university for the Marshall Scholarship for Sexual Health and Gender Equity in the Fay W. Boozman College of Public Health. The scholarship will be awarded each year to a College of Public Health student with an interest in addressing health disparities related to sexual or reproductive health or gender identity. Recipients will receive funds for up to five concurrent semesters, with the intent to support the students through their entire education.
“I hope this scholarship can help fill a void, a need we have in this state to have more public health leaders who are willing and able to tackle health disparities that affect underrepresented or underserved individuals, and also conduct research that is socially driven to achieve better gender equity,” said Marshall.
Marshall’s research focuses on adolescent and emerging adult sexuality, sexual health and gender disparities, HIV prevention, other sexually transmitted infections and unplanned pregnancy. Her previous work includes conducting statewide focus groups with parents and teens to determine whether sex education should be included in public schools, as well as addressing perceptions about teen pregnancy and pregnancy prevention strategies. She also prioritizes the health care needs of the LGBTQ+ community so they will have access to affirming medical care throughout the state. Marshall also donated $25,000 to establish a dissertation research award for College of Public Health doctoral students. Recipients will receive a one-time $1,000 award to assist with the research costs associated with completing a dissertation.
“I care about the state of Arkansas — about our youth and the public health needs of the state,” said Marshall. “There are myriad ways that people can do something to affect change. I feel like I’m doing what I can to try to help address those needs and priorities.”