The public health academic staff welcomes you!
Julia R. Varnes, PhD, MPH, MCHES is the director of the Master of Public Health Program for the College of Public Health and Health Professions, and a Clinical Associate Professor with the Department of Health Services Research, Management, and Policy as well as faculty within the Social and Behavioral Sciences concentration. Dr. Varnes received her PhD in health behavior, with a minor in research and evaluation methodology, from the University of Florida. Dr. Varnes holds two masters degrees, one in health education (from UF), and one in public health (University of Maryland, College Park).
Dr. Varnes has worked in college health at UF for nearly 15 years, first as a public health practitioner with UF’s Area Health Education Program (AHEC) and later with GatorWell Health Promotion Services. She joined UF as faculty in 2014, and joined the College of PHHP in 2021. Dr. Varnes is a Master Certified Health Education Specialist (MCHES), and also a member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT).
Focusing on psychosocial health, Dr. Varnes’s research and academic interests are specific to interpersonal violence, objectification, and gender role expectations; inclusivity and accessibility for persons with disabilities; and professional preparation. In her teaching, advising, and mentoring, she aims to instill concepts of empowerment, compassion, acceptance, and cultural competency/humility in future professionals.
Telisha is a triple Gator with bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the UF Department of Health Education and Behavior as well as a Master’s of Arts from the UF Department of Sociology. She has been with the MPH program since October 2011 and currently serves as the Academic Advisor for both campus and online MPH students. She advises MPH students on their plans of study for completion of the MPH and other curriculum and program related requirements.
Aubrey is the Admissions Coordinator for the MPH Program. She processes applications for students interested in the Masters of Public Health or Graduate Certificate in Public Health. In addition to serving as the link between applicants and the program’s concentration coordinators, she also is a point-of-contact for students interested in our curriculum.
In addition, Aubrey also offers administrative support to Dr. Cindy Prins, Assistant Dean for Educational Affairs and Dr. Julia Varnes, MPH Program Director.
Emma K Hunniford MPH
Emma is the Internship & Outreach Coordinator for the Master of Public Health (MPH) program at UF. She oversees and facilitates PHC 6941, Applied Practice Experience. Emma serves as the liaison between the MPH program and the internship sites.
Emma was a 2021 graduate from the MPH program at UF and presented her capstone project on the cultural sensitivity and applicability of Western-world developed early childhood assessments to rural communities in low- to middle-income countries.