Students tackle real-world challenges in case competitions

Ohio State teams place 1st, 2nd in National Public Health Week contests

  • Denise Blough
April 15, 2021
Public health students Liberty Sheppard, Sophia Padgett, Uma Mylavarapu, Tatiana Schrader and Gabrielle Tharp earned 1st place in the college's third annual case competition
Public health students Liberty Sheppard, Sophia Padgett, Uma Mylavarapu, Tatiana Schrader and Gabrielle Tharp earned 1st place in the college's third annual case competition

The College of Public Health hosted two virtual student case competitions last week during National Public Health Week: The CPH Student Case Competition and the First-Year Health Care Case Competition.

Ohio State teams placed 1st and 2nd in the respective events.

CPH Student Case Competition

Six teams of graduate and undergraduate students from Ohio State and Case Western Reserve universities competed in the college’s third annual case competition on April 7.

With a focus on Ohio’s COVID-19 response in county jails, the teams analyzed statewide strategies, successes and shortcomings addressing the pandemic within jails and presented policy recommendations. The top teams from each university then competed in a final round, scored by judges including experts from ACLU Ohio, Geauga Public Health and the Ohio Department of Health.

The Ohio State team took first place by one point. Students on the winning team included:

  • Uma Mylavarapu, third-year BSPH student
  • Sophia Padgett, first-year MPH student
  • Liberty Sheppard, first-year MPH student
  • Tatiana Schrader, first-year MPH student
  • Gabrielle Tharp, first-year MPH student

The event was sponsored by the college, the College of Public Health Alumni Society, ACLU Ohio and the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine MPH program.

First-Year Health Care Case Competition

Graduate students from health administration programs across the country competed virtually on April 8 and 9 at Ohio State’s 10th First-Year Health Care Case Competition.

The 24 student teams presented creative management solutions pertaining to John Hopkins Medicine’s infusion services in the Washington, D.C. area. The top six teams advanced to the final round, which included a live Q&A and was judged by executives from John Hopkins Medicine.

The University of Alabama at Birmingham took 1st place, followed by teams from Ohio State and the University of Michigan. Other finalists included the University of Southern California, the University of Washington and Texas State University. Ohio State was represented by MHA students Quinn Fike, Holly Heffer and Morgan Knies. 

Run by the student organization Association for Future Health Care Executives, “the First-Year Case Competition is a hallmark of our Master of Health Administration program that continues to set us apart,” said Julie Robbins, clinical associate professor of health services management and policy, director of the MHA program and faculty advisor to the competition. 

The event was held in conjunction with the 18th annual Leadership Development Symposium, which featured Lisa Ishii, senior vice president of operations at Johns Hopkins Medicine.


About The Ohio State University College of Public Health

The Ohio State University College of Public Health is a leader in educating students, creating new knowledge through research, and improving the livelihoods and well-being of people in Ohio and beyond.  The College's divisions include biostatistics, environmental health sciences, epidemiology, health behavior and health promotion, and health services management and policy.   It is ranked 19th among all colleges of public health in the U.S. by U.S. News and World Report, and also includes the top 7-ranked MHA degree program.  The College provides leadership and expertise for Ohio and the world through its Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Evaluation Studies (HOPES) and Center for Public Health Practice (CPHP).