Meet our Fellows: Interview with Graduated Fellow Maria Rodriguez

Current Job Titles and Institutions:

  • Assistant Professor, ObGyn, Oregon Health & Science University
  • Medical Director, Title X and BCCP program,  Oregon Health Authority
  • Consultant, WHO, Department of Reproductive Health & Research

Fellowship Site: UCSF

Graduation Year: 2010

Fellowship Research Topic: I conducted a cost benefit analysis of a Medicaid policy restricting access to postpartum contraception for recent immigrants.

Global Health Placement Location: After graduating from fellowship, I completed the two year post fellowship post at the World Health Organization. I worked both there, and at OHSU until last month, when I transitioned back to a full time academic position.


  1.        Why did you join the Fellowship in Family Planning?

I joined the fellowship in family planning because of my interest in the intersection between medicine, policy and economics on reproductive health outcomes and disparities. I wanted to become a leader in generating research to drive evidence based reproductive health policy in the US and globally.

  1.        What did you find most valuable about the Fellowship?

It is really hard to pick just one thing- there were so many different aspects of the fellowship that really helped me.  For me personally though, probably the most valuable part was the guidance and assistance in developing a research career. The many different types of resources offered to help support fellows in conducting family planning research were invaluable. From the mentoring both at my fellowship site and from mentors throughout the FP community, the ability to obtain an MPH, and the funds to conduct different projects, the opportunity to do the post fellowship WHO position, the fellowship really helped launch my research career.

  1.        What do you like most about your current job?

 I love that in my current job I have the privilege of  providing direct clinical services for a diverse population of women and the opportunity to work with the state of Oregon in evaluating their family planning program and helping shape policy.

  1.        What would you tell someone who is considering whether or not they should apply to the Fellowship?

The fellowship can help prepare you for many different types of careers within family planning, from clinical work to research to policy and advocacy at the domestic or international level. The possibilities are limitless!