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GEMS (Graduate Epidemiologists & Biostaticians at MSU)

(Left to Right Yasi Zamani-Hank & Alyssa Vanderziel Co-Presidents, Mounira Ozoor, Vice President, Sarah Brewer, Secretary/Treasurer)

Graduate Epidemiologists and Biostaticians at Michigan State Organization (GEMS) is the primary organization of epidemiology and biostatistics graduate students at Michigan State University.

GEMS is excited to announce the start of the Department of Epidemiology Book Club!

The purpose of this Book Club is to provide an enjoyable, friendly environment for graduate students, faculty, staff, and any others interested, to read and discuss current issues of importance in epidemiology, population health, and public health. This Book Club also presents an opportunity to connect and tune our Department in to important work ongoing at our university, our local communities, and around the state.

To kickstart our first Book Club series, we will be reading the recently published “Philosophy of Population Health: Philosophy for a New Public Health Era” (2018) by Dr. Sean Valles, an Associate Professor and fellow colleague in the Department of Philosophy and the Lyman Briggs College. As our departmental curriculum touches upon important philosophical and theoretical issues in epidemiology and public health, we are excited to introduce this book to the department, and we believe it will be highly relevant to our diverse research interests.

If you are interested in participating in Book Club, please fill out the following doodle poll to schedule our first meeting: https://doodle.com/poll/urccu9i4b46c653h . If you cannot attend in person, we will have zoom set up, but please fill out the poll anyway.

Our first meeting in February will be a planning meeting to discuss logistics. We will hold our first official meeting after the Spring Break, in March.

Please let us know if you have any questions.

We look forward to seeing you at Book Club!!

Best, GEMS E-Board


Graduate Epidemiologists at Michigan State (GEMS), a student organization within the Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics, organized and led an event at Haven House of East Lansing. Haven House is a homeless shelter providing emergency housing and support services for both one- and two-parent families with children, emphasizing safe shelter, healthy food, and clothing. The shelter provides families with programs that offer assistance with attaining housing within a realistic budget (Rapid Rehousing), in addition to classes and activities for parent and children (Family Life).

On April 17th, 2019, GEMS organized an Easter craft experience with the children of Haven House. Nine children of various ages were given the opportunity to join in this creative experience. The event allowed the children to forget about their difficult situation for a precious few hours.

Purpose of GEMS:

1. Discussion forum for epidemiology and biostatistics graduate students
2. Advocate actions that enhance the science and practice of epidemiology and biostatistics among students
3. Promote professional student development through educational activities
4. Hold social events to encourage a friendly environment for networking and fun

Mission and History of GEMS

GEMS is the primary organization of epidemiology graduate students at Michigan State University. GEMS is dedicated to the promotion of a high quality epidemiology graduate education and research environment at MSU and to the promotion of public's health, in Michigan, elsewhere in the United States, and overseas.

GEMS was formally created in 1999 as an organization that serves the interest of the member-students: (a) through sponsorship of scientific meetings and journal clubs, (b) by providing a forum for discussions on any topic that concerns GEMS members and their educational and research activities, (c) recognizing outstanding contributions to the field, and (d) advocacy for issues pertinent to GEMS.


President of GEMS Responsibilities:

Responsibilities include: for month-to-month and semester-to-semester policy and programmatic decisions and for convening GEMS meetings; representing GEMS in negotiations with the department chair and other unit administrators pertinent to GEMS.

Vice President of GEMS Responsibilities

Responsibilities include: operational logistics for the bimonthly GEMS meetings and attendance at departmental graduate committee meetings, as scheduled. Assists the president in the planning of seminars and journal club activities regarding the applications of epidemiology, as well as social events.

GEMS Bylaws