Almost 4 years ago, I landed at CDC in the Injury Center in an unconventional way. I’ve always loved science, and specifically the interplay between the brain and human behavior. Luckily for me, I learned early on that the best scientists are often those who don’t limit their interests to a narrow field of research, but rather look for multiple approaches in areas to work in. So I left academia, switched from neuroscience to public health, and became a disease detective in CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service program. The EIS program allowed me to travel the globe to work on preventing the leading causes of injury and to detect disease outbreaks and stop their spread. I helped in a surveillance of fatal motor vehicle crashes in Thailand, a country that ranks second highest for rates of road traffic injury deaths in the world. I also worked on a surveillance of Zika virus infection among pregnant women, opioid overdose, marijuana impaired driving, and now traumatic brain injury. By assisting other countries and states, I help keep Americans safe and healthy, a CDC goal. I’m grateful that it’s never a dull day at work and I love my job! I’m Alexis Peterson and I am CDC!
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