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Monica Taneja, MD, MHS '19

An MHS in environmental science prepared Monica Taneja for the rigors of medical school. After completing med school at the University of Maryland, she was matched to a psychiatry residency at Harvard South Shore.


Where are you working or studying now? 

After graduation, I went to medical school at the University of Maryland. I just completed medical school this year and was matched to a psychiatry residency at Harvard South Shore. As part of my residency, I work at the Boston VA medical system and treat veterans both inpatient and outpatient. Currently, I'm working in a locked psychiatric acute care unit. I'm starting to get involved in research focusing on utilizing brain imaging in mental health disorders. 

How did your degree from EHE prepare you for medical school and beyond? 

EHE provided a great public health foundation to bring to medical school, especially in epidemiology, which came up on board exams and in research. Environmental health is also becoming more and more important in thinking about how climate change affects patients – there is a growing field of “climate mental health”. Also, writing the thesis and presenting the final work was very valuable in preparing me to hit the ground running on projects during medical school. I was able to use that background to gain autonomy and spearhead my own ideas. 

What was your favorite thing about living in Baltimore? 

Baltimore is such a cool city! It's small so you can really ingrain yourself in such a short amount of time and find your niche. It's so unique and really allows for unique people to thrive. Also, the food scene is awesome!  

What would you tell pre-med students who are considering a post-baccalaureate program in environmental science at JHU? 

Do it! No matter when you are applying whether it be during your MHS (like myself) or after, the program is incredibly supportive of your future career. Professors in the department and even in other programs are knowledgeable about the process and I was able to find flexibility to take time off as needed for interviews. The uniqueness of coming into medical school with a master's - specifically one in EHE - was also a huge talking point for me during the application cycle. It’s truly a great program not only for the content but that you become an expert in something relevant and valuable that makes you stand out. 

Environmental Health and Engineering is a cross-divisional department spanning the Bloomberg School of Public Health and the Whiting School of Engineering. This hybrid department is uniquely designed to lead pioneering research and prepare the next generation of scholars to solve critical and complex issues at the interface of public health and engineering. Learn more about our programs.