Meet Public Health Genetics Alum Haley Director


Haley Director completed her MPH in public health genetics this spring of 2022 and will begin her PhD in the fall, studying health services research and policy in the Department of Health Policy and Management at Pitt Public Health. 

What does public health genetics mean to you? 

To me, public health genetics is the intersection of genomics research and population health. I’ve benefited from public health genetics through the carrier screening program for Ashkenazi Jews, so I know firsthand the impact and importance of public health genetics.

What areas of public health genetics are of interest to you? 

I’m interested in policy, specifically increasing access to and insurance coverage for genetic testing for medically underserved communities. I’m also interested in eventually helping develop more public health genetics programs.

What will you be doing/have you done as a practicum during the MPH Public Health Genetics Program? 

Last summer, I served as a Medical Policy Intern for the UPMC Health Plan and edited old policies and helped develop new policies. I also researched competitor policies to determine whether they should develop a coverage policy for experimental and investigational technologies. 

Do you have a recommendation for a resource/podcast/book/article for someone who might be interested in learning more about public health genetics? 

Check out the NCC website, which also links to regional genetics networks and shows the projects they’ve been working on! 

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