Beloit College
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Tom McHale

Class of 2007

Project Coordinator
John Snow, Inc. in Boston, Mass., a public health research and consulting firm 

Tom MViolence against women in the Democratic Republic of the Congo is a tough topic, but Tom McHale’07 studied it every day with colleagues at the Harvard School of Public Health. His team there included physicians, geographers, architects, and political scientists acting with the same goal: improving healthcare in Idjwi, a small island on Congo’s Lake Kivu. In interviewing local women, he opened a window on the little-discussed epidemic of violence against women in their own homes, often overshadowed by the public violence instigated by militias.

Tom’s activism may have developed in graduate school, but it began at Beloit. In his Emerging Infectious Diseases class, the Health and Society major explains, “I realized I could be an agent of change. I saw that I could make my impact in global health.”

To work toward that goal, he took advantage of Beloit’s study-abroad opportunities, including the Nicaragua Cities in Transition class. He followed that term by studying in the Republic of Georgia and Kenya, where he learned Swahili. These experiences set the stage for Tom’s post-Beloit path. He returned to Kenya on a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship before enrolling at Harvard, and since completing his master’s degree in Global Health and Population, he has taken a position as project coordinator at John Snow Inc., a public health research and consulting firm.