|Ms. Jennifer Geiger received her B.S. from the University of Michigan in April 2011, majoring in environmental studies. Throughout her undergraduate career, service trips abroad paired with her experiences working in the hospital in her hometown (Toledo, Ohio) and volunteering weekly at U-M Mott Children's Hospital, gave her a passion for children's health. Coursework introducing the consequences of unregulated or ill-managed hazardous chemicals led Ms. Geiger to intern at an environment NPO called the Ecology Center during the summer of 2010, engaging with Michigan legislature candidates in a campaign to eliminate toxic chemicals in children's products. Committed to helping eliminate the disconnect to the environment that persists in the practice and perspectives of medicine, Ms. Geiger hopes to pursue a dual medical and public health degree upon completion of her Fulbright-Nehru grant.
Hosted by the DNGM Foundation, Ms. Geiger will contribute to an ongoing comprehensive study evaluating the effects of in utero and early-childhood exposure to arsenic. In what remains as one of the world's largest environmental health catastrophes, the chronic toxicity of arsenic-contaminated groundwater was first discovered in West Bengal in 1983. A known carcinogen, arsenic is reported to readily cross the placental barrier and recent attention has shed light on its adverse reproductive health outcomes. An understanding of whether arsenic poisoning significantly impairs child development is important to the unborn generations and future economies of India as well as the world, as arsenic contamination affects over 20 countries globally.