University of Washington School of Public Health
Vy Tran, '16, was driven to study environmental health after seeing how work in a tofu factory took a toll on her mother's mental and physical health. Today she's making an impact as an occupational health worker.
After graduating from the UW last year with a BS in environmental health, Tran took a position as an environmental health and safety consultant in Google X’s Research Safety Team, where she supports projects such as Google’s Driverless Cars and Google Glass. In the future, Tran hopes to study occupational hygiene in graduate school as she continues to work and provide financial support to her family.
The Seattle factory where Tran and her mother once worked has been shut down because of its many safety violations, but the health problems that Tran’s mother developed are lasting. While memories of her past may never disappear, Tran is glad she can apply her ever-growing skillset to improve occupational health.
“Most people spend eight hours a day working,” says Tran. “That’s 33 percent of their day! I can’t think of anything more meaningful than making sure that 33 percent of our precious lives are fulfilling, efficient and without pain.”