Lauren Finch

“It is my hope that through this experience I will have the opportunity to better understand healthcare inequalities, bridge gaps in service, and grow personally.”

Educational Background: Bachelors of Science in Biochemistry and minor in Healthcare Studies from the University of Richmond (2016)

Host Site: Health & Benefits Advocate at Family Practice and Counseling Network- Abbottsford Falls

Why did you join National Health Corps?
I joined the National Health Corps to help others navigate through our healthcare system. It is my hope that through this experience I will have the opportunity to better understand healthcare inequalities, bridge gaps in service, and grow personally.

What are your plans after AmeriCorps service?
After serving with AmeriCorps, I hope to attend medical school and continue to work with underserved communities.

Tell us about an employment, service, or research experience that was important to you.
As an undergraduate, I worked on a research project that analyzed the heavy metal toxins in children's toys. From our research findings, toys purchased from bargain stores were more likely to be noncompliant with CPSC regulations and bargain stores in the Greater Richmond area were more concentrated in low­ income areas. This offered insight into a potential public health concern in the Richmond community. Children living in low­ income areas may have greater exposure to toxic metals from toys purchased in their community bargain stores. This exposure to toxic metals can effect a child’s developmental, emotional, and intellectual growth. I presented my research both locally and regionally and published my findings in peer­-reviewed journals to bring awareness to this under recognized issue.

What first sparked your interest in community service?
My Quaker elementary education instilled in me the values of giving back and supporting others. From this foundation, I am committed to play an active role in my community and never be a bystander.

What about Philadelphia excites you the most?
From living in Southern New Jersey for the majority of my life, I know how full of culture and history Philadelphia is and I am excited to further explore this city in the coming year.

What is your favorite dessert?
Mac and Cheese

Hometown: Moorestown, NJ