Alumna helped to coordinate Penn State’s COVID-19 mitigation efforts
In the midst of the COVID-19 outbreak, alumna Shelley Haffner left retirement to assist with Penn State’s pandemic response. Building on her expertise and degree — the public health preparedness option of the Penn State Intercollege Master of Professional Studies in Homeland Security — Haffner helped with coronavirus mitigation efforts at Penn State Altoona.
Prior to retiring, Haffner was the infectious disease manager for Penn State’s University Health Services. During the pandemic, she assisted with contact tracing, case management and reporting requirements at Penn State Altoona Sheetz Health and Wellness Center. She credits her degree with equipping her with the expertise needed to curb the spread of the disease on campus and throughout the community.
“My studies helped me to understand the bigger picture of how an infectious disease outbreak on a university campus impacts the surrounding communities,” she said.
Haffner noted that establishing lines of communication and coordinating with stakeholders were crucial lessons echoed throughout the master’s program.
Penn State’s online Intercollege Master of Professional Studies in Homeland Security with an option in Public Health Preparedness is offered in partnership with Penn State College of Medicine’s Department of Public Health Sciences.
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