Dr. Aimee Eden is living the dream in Kentucky

| Academic & Student Affairs, CFH, Monday Letter, Our Alumni

Aimee Eden, PhD, MPH, is a qualitative researcher at the American Board of Family Medicine in Lexington, KY. Her focus areas include: various aspects of family medicine, including quality of care, patient- and family-centered care, professionalism, inter-professional collaboration, physician experience, and much more.

As the mother of two young children, family medicine hits close to home.

“Understanding how family physicians, as primary care providers, function within the broader health care system during this time of transition is an important piece of improving population health, and in addressing health disparities and inequity in health care,” Dr. Eden said.

Aimee Eden

“Busy and supportive” is one way she describes her time in the College of Public Health.

“I started the program with a 1-year old and graduated with an 8-year old and a 6-year old. It was a long process and I rarely got enough sleep, but with the support of faculty and other students, it was always a pleasure!”

As a student at USF, Dr. Eden was not one to sit idle. She became involved in advocacy, working as a parent member of the Florida Covering Kids and Families Coalition. She also served on the board of directors of The Family Healthcare Foundation (formerly The Kids Healthcare Foundation). In addition, Dr. Eden was an active member of the Hillsborough County Breastfeeding Taskforce.

“These activities supplemented my education as a student of public health, giving me real-world experience and training,” Eden said. The qualitative and mixed methods research skills she learned as a student and research assistant are utilized every day in her role with the ABFM.

“I am so thankful for the opportunities the college provided—SHARP awards, research assistantships, the MCH Traineeship, teaching undergraduate courses, and mentorship from amazing faculty like Drs. Carol Bryant, Martha Coulter, and Carla VandeWeerd.”

Erie, Pennsylvania; Athens, Ohio; and, Washington, DC, are just a few of the places she’s called home. She even spent two years living in Kazakhstan as a Peace Corps volunteer.

In between her travels, Eden managed to complete her undergraduate studies in anthropology and English, as well as a master’s degree in international affairs from Ohio University.

“The dual degree program (PhD in anthropology/MPH) at USF provided me with so many academic, research, and professional opportunities,” Eden shared.  “I got to work with some amazing faculty in both departments and do true interdisciplinary work.”

As for her dream job, “I have it—I get paid to do research all day long!”

When Dr. Eden isn’t living out her research dream, she enjoys spending time with her two children, traveling, and watching documentaries.

In the COPH, the Department of Community and Family Health served as her academic home. The department offers more than 10 concentrations that lead to MPH, MSPH, DrPH, and PhD degrees, as well as dual degrees, special programs, and graduate certificates.

Story by Christi Owiye and Natalie D. Preston, USF College of Public Health. Photo courtesy of Dr. Aimee Eden.